In the wake of Brexit, LSE strengthens its ties to other European universities

LSE will be joining CIVICA, the European University of Social Sciences as an associated partner. 

On Wednesday 26th June, the European Commission (EC) awarded funding to CIVICA, the European University of Social Sciences. CIVICA is a collaboration between 7 leading European universities focussing on the humanities and social science disciplines. Out of a total of 54 applications received, the EC awarded funds to 17 successful European Universities. 

This follows on from previous efforts of the School to strengthen its ties with other leading European social science institutions, such as the recent introduction of a joint LSE-Bocconi degree programme in collaboration with the University of Bocconi in Milan.

CIVICA is made up of a number of leading social science-focussed universities across Europe. These include:

  • Sciences Po, France (lead institution for the project)
  • Bocconi University, Italy
  • Central European University, Hungary
  • the European University Institute (European Intergovernmental Organisation)
  • the Hertie School of Governance, Germany
  • the Stockholm School of Economics, Sweden

LSE will be an associated partner. 

A first year History student who wishes to remain unnamed commented: “The programme is really exciting, particularly given the worries concerning the UK’s impending exit of the EU. It is really great to see that LSE is still interested in keeping its door open to building ties with other leading European Institutions.”

The programme unites these institutions with the objective of creating an inter-university campus linking teaching and research across Europe’s cultural, linguistic and national borders. The institutions involved share a long-term higher education strategy aiming to promote European values and identity.  

Commenting on the collaboration, Minouche Shafik said: “From combatting climate change to treating global disease and tackling inequality, the social sciences are vital for our wellbeing and prosperity. LSE is looking forward to working closely with CIVICA to enhance the impact of the social sciences and humanities and help demonstrate their enormous value to the world.”

CIVICA hopes to contribute to the continued international competitiveness of European universities and also to tackle the biggest issues facing society. The scheme has had added impetus due to the fears of Brexit and rising populism undermining the EU’s future. The EC hopes that these universities will develop a deep level of integration in the long-run.

Emily Douglas, President of the LSESU Geography and Environment Society commented: “In a time where European cohesion seems to be becoming less of a priority, I think a strong partnership with these institutions will allow us to come together and unify to work on some of the most challenging issues in the current social sciences climate.”

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