Closed on 14th July 2014. To see the project's summary statistics please click here.
Activities and Accomplishment of the EXPERTS I Project Objectives:
A total of 122 mobilities (out of 126 mobilities as originally planned) have been successfully accomplished, which equates to 27 Undergraduate mobilities, 35 Master mobilities, 19 Doctorate mobilities, 15 Post-Doctorate mobilities, and 26 Staff mobilities. Additionally, the EXPERTS Project has awarded scholarships to students, researchers, and staff from 10 different countries, and cultivated international academic cooperation between 17 different countries in total.
The EXPERTS Project has successfully addressed the thematic needs of the partners within the targeted Third Countries. Most importantly, these thematic areas are in line with the development priorities of the Third Countries, such as Agriculture Sciences (12 mobilities); Education, Teacher Training (3 mobilities); Engineering and Technology (22 mobilities); Geography and Geology (7 mobilities); Medical Science, including Public Health (3 mobilities); Natural Sciences, including Microbiology and Biotechnology (28 mobilities); and Social Sciences, including Development Studies and International Relation (14 mobilities).
The project has likewise contributed to upgrading and enhancing educational qualifications, as well as teaching and research skills, through the effective implementation of student, researcher and teaching staff exchanges from South and South East Asia to Europe. More specifically, 8 Administrative Staff (out of 26 Staff mobilities in total) were trained under the EXPERTS scholarship with regard to the internationalisation processes of the respective universities, and thereby learnt and acquired new techniques regarding management and administration with reference to the international realm.
Another particular accomplishment of the EXPERTS Project has been its implementation and fulfilment of the project objectives, with special emphasis here on its consideration of cross-cutting issues such as gender balance, brain drain, and the inclusion of vulnerable groups in this mobility programme. In terms of respecting a gender balance, 37.7% of the grantee proportion was female which, given the context in certain countries, could be considered as a particular and very welcome achievement. Moreover, in approximately 55% of the partner institutions a good gender balance was achieved (with a total of 45% females or more).
With regards to encouraging and ensuring the participation of TG2 and TG3 candidates in this programme, the project received applicants from both TG2 and TG3 candidates. Overall we can infer that equal opportunities have been promoted and ensured to the best of the Consortium’s ability, and that the encouraging numbers of applicants is largely attributable to the project’s good and successful promotional strategy, which has focused on covering every geographical, gender-related and background-related aspect and ensured that all academically-worthy candidates have been given the best opportunity to develop both personally and professionally by means of this scholarship.
Provisions have been made to cultivate and guarantee long-term relationships, sustainability, recognition and synergies between partners. According to the opinion of several local coordinators, the EXPERTS Project has contributed to positively strengthening cooperation between EU and SSEA HEIs, which is evident in the number of collaborations and cooperations which have occurred as a result of the project. Numerous bilateral agreements and Memorandums of Understanding have been signed, and several joint research projects and programmes have been initiated among the Consortium partners. These cooperations have not only been established between the partners within the Consortium, but also with partners from the targeted region, namely Europe and SSEA. This is deemed to be a particularly significant achievement of the EXPERTS Project, and one which it is hoped will lead to even more long-lasting international success in the future of academic cooperations.
The EXPERTS Project planned an Asia Regional Meeting for November 2014 which took place at Kasetsart University in Thailand, during which the lessons learned and best practices were shared not only amongst the Consortium partners but also with other partners and coordinators of Erasmus Mundus Action 2 projects in the region.