Mediterranean Universities Union (UNIMED)
UNIMED, the Mediterranean Universities Union, founded in October 1991, is an association of Universities from the countries of the Mediterranean basin. It counts 103 associated Universities coming from 23 countries of both shores of Mediterranean (data updated to November 2017).
UNIMED’s aim is to develop university research and education in the Euro-Mediterranean area in order to contribute to scientific, cultural, social and economic cooperation. UNIMED acts in different fields: tangible and intangible cultural heritage, economics, energy, environment, management of water resources, transports, health, media, new technologies, history, tourism. The image that better represents our association is that of a University Without Walls.
UNIMED carries out the following activities in favour of the associated Universities:
- Promotion of the international dimension of universities;
- Planning and fund-raising activities: information on call for proposals and opportunities offered by international and European Commission, partnership search, technical assistance, planning; dissemination;
- Promotion of mobility in the Euro-Mediterranean region, for students, researchers and academic staff;
- Technical assistance for the enhancement of quality assurance in university education;
- Creation of thematic Sub-Networks to foster the scientific cooperation within specific fields;
- Organization of meetings, discussions, seminars and round tables both at a national and international level;
- Training for academic and administrative staff of Universities, particularly for the personnel of International Relations Offices.
Through the many initiatives carried out over the two decades, UNIMED has promoted the collaboration between universities of the Mediterranean, becoming a point of reference of the international university cooperation.
During the last few years, UNIMED has also supported the establishment of a second-level network, constituted by sub-Networks focused on specific sectors. The sub-Networks intend to create a database of research centers, university departments, ongoing projects and research line, including existing partnership in the selected fields. The sub-Networks structure allows an intensive exchange of information among the participating actors of the two Mediterranean shores for the creation of partnerships, collaborations and projects. The aim of these projects is to strengthen the economic and social cohesion, in order to promote, on the one side, cross-border, transnational and interregional cooperation and, on the other side, local sustainable development.
Through the sub-Networks activities it is possible to increase the cooperation among the Euro-Mediterranean universities, to promote the development and harmonization of the educational systems in order to encourage, among others, the Bologna Process. The sub-networks on which UNIMED is concentrating its efforts are the following:
- Transports, logistics and multi-modality;
- Renewable energies and environment;
- Intangible cultural heritage;
- Tourism in the Mediterranean;
- Aerospace Technology and Air Transportation System;
- Mediterranean Diet;
A place where to produce detailed information on Mediterranean Region using primary sources, as well as produce original and in-depth analysis written directly by researchers of the UNIMED Think Tank or by university professors, intellectuals and specialists part of the network of UNIMED.
UNION FOR THE MEDITERRANEAN (UfM)
In 2013 UNIMED signed a “Memorandum of Understanding” with the Union for the Mediterranean aimed at establishing cooperation to further develop areas of common interest, particularly in higher education and research.
The agreement aims to establish greater mutual cooperation through the pursuit of regional and international initiatives in order to enhance the impact and increase synergies in higher education and academic mobility by developing educational and scientific cooperation in the Euro-Mediterranean region.
AGREEMENT WITH THE EIB
In May 2007, the European Investment Bank and UNIMED signed a “Memorandum of Understanding”. This cooperation agreement has been established within the framework of the “EIB University Networks”, a Group’s partnership system with the networks of universities aimed at strengthening the particularly notable initiatives, which are in line the EIB international cooperation politics.
The key priorities of the Memorandum are the following:
- Euro-Mediterranean regional integration as well as integration and cooperation between the countries of eastern and southern Mediterranean partners of the EU;
- Environmental protection and sustainable development;
- Protection and strengthening of Euro-Mediterranean cultural heritage;
- Social policy, especially with regard to public health and employment.
PROVENCE-ALPES-COTE D’AZUR REGION
UNIMED signed on October 2015 a “Memorandum of Understanding” with the Regional Council of Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur. The Memorandum of Understanding will seek to realize a cooperation on the Euro-Mediterranean issues and to lead actions such as:
- Strengthening synergies between UNIMED and the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region’s Academic and Scientific staff.
- Launching common lobbying actions at international and European level.
- Sharing information on the activities of the Regional Council of Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur among the Academic staff of UNIMED members.
- Realization of European and International common Projects.
- Promoting and facilitating the international mobility of students and researchers from both shores of the Mediterranean.
ASSOCIATION OF ARAB UNIVERSITIES (AArU)
During the year 2014, UNIMED signed a “Memorandum of Understanding” with the Arab Universities Association which foresees the collaboration between the two partners for the realization of joint activities and in particular:
- Projects and activities;
- Seminars and Workshops’ Organisation;
- Visits of Staff and experts;
- Information exchange.
UN ACADEMIC IMPACT
UNIMED is one of the founder members of Academic Impact, a programme of the Outreach Division of the Department of Public Information of the United Nations, established in 2009 and dedicated to international higher education institutes and research centers.
INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF UNIVERSITY PRESIDENTS (IAUP)
In May 2010 UNIMED signed a Memorandum of Understanding with IAUP, an Association founded in 1964 at Oxford, United Kingdom, gathering university’s presidents and representatives of higher education institutions all over the world.
UNIMED headquarters are in Rome, in Palazzo Baleani. We have other five other branches: one in Palermo, one in Palestine, at the National University “An-Najah” of Nablus, one in Rabat at Mohammed V University, one at the University of Evora and one in Paris at the University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne.