InterACTional Innovation Race 2021: Reinventing universities for a sustainable future

Published on February 15, 2021 Updated on April 20, 2021
InterACTional Innovation Race 2021
InterACTional Innovation Race 2021

On Tuesday 9th February 2021, around 60 students from three universities, University of Bergen (Norway), Vilnius University (Lithuania), and iaelyon School of Management – University Jean Moulin Lyon 3 (France) – participated in the first ever European Innovation Race, focused on reinventing universities for a sustainable future.

The European Innovation Race will be an annual event organized by the InterACTional project, a collaboration between the three universities as well as the Knowledge Economy Forum in Lithuania, and aims to “turn up the heat” on students from the three universities by providing a one-day, intensive case study where they are expected to present a solution by the end of the day.

In the 2021 and first ever edition, the three cases that were presented were based on the most pressing issues for universities in the current climate:

  • University Jean Moulin Lyon 3: The integration of international students into universities during the COVID-19 crisis
  • University of Bergen: Organizing international collaboration in a less carbon-intensive way
  • Vilnius University: Fighting against the student drop-out rate due to poor choice of study programs
Students were split into groups of 5-6 to work on their assigned case, which encouraged a collaboration of the different perspectives from the students of the three different universities to explore solutions that could be put in place.

The day ended with presentations by each group with their solutions to their assigned case. The jury was delighted with the quality of the solutions, such as travel apps designed to help you reduce your carbon footprint for Bergen, and a peer system for advice on degrees for Vilnius. The jury from University Jean Moulin Lyon 3 was particularly impressed by the solutions proposed for their question of the integration of international students: a social media app designed for students that is linked to their classes, and an online collaborative credit-award course that can be taken by both national and international students that focuses on intercultural communication.

iaelyon would like to thank the organizers of the InterACTional team for inviting us to participate in the day, and are delighted to found like-minded partners that strive to provide international collaboration for their students despite the restrictions of the current pandemic.

We look forward to the 2022 edition!