Our April Fool joke “Will make K2 international” was quite successful. Many thought the joke was funny, others reported that the idea was actually very good and wanted to join. Therefore, we will now consider the proposal – seriously this time. I can reassure everyone that the visit to an “elite university” in Hawaii is not included in the plan, but the department management will during 2016 visit UoBs new office in Brussels.
The head of the office, that is a collaboration with NTNU and SINTEF, is newly employed and his name is Kristof Vlaeminck. Vlaeminck has experience from both research and research funding and is currently national contact point for FP7 and Horizon 2020 and the Belgian delegate to the Horizon 2020’s program committee for the discipline “Secure Societies”.
The EU office has ambitions to keep UoB updated on the research developments in the EU, as well as being of concrete assistance to researchers who want to build networks or establish consortiums. They also have meeting rooms that can be used by researchers from UoB. The next few weeks Vlaeminck will visit UoB, and hopefully also our department, so that we can get “firsthand” knowledge of how best to utilize this opportunity.
The research department at UoB prioritises international networking and will provide support to researchers who want to establish contacts and write applications. Concretely K2 sent a COST action application this April, and the research department played a very central role in the writing process.
K2 is doing well in the international arena already, partly visible through numerous publications in very highly rated journals like the New England Journal of Medicine, Nature and Science in recent years. This illustrates the importance of international networks and how we can use these to become internationally leading.
Finally, we will use the leeway to employ a new research advisor, not to travel to Hawaii …
Good luck with network building!