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Regional strategies can help universities, conference hears

With universities facing a “perfect storm” of challenges, including a need to adapt to social changes despite budget squeezes, adopting an institutional “smart specialisation” strategy for their local region can help them prove their worth to citizens and governments.

That was one of the messages that Ellen Hazelkorn (pictured), director of the Higher Education Policy Research Unit at the Dublin Institute of Technology, gave attendees at the 2018 annual conference of the European Association of Institutions in Higher Education in Tallinn, Estonia, on 19 April.

In her keynote speech, Hazelkorn said that universities must take heed of the particular economic and social requirements of their region through placed-based plans and activities that engage with local people.

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