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Policy seminar and debate on establishment and development of the third mission at Serbian universities held in Palace of Serbia


Policy seminar and debate on establishment and development of the third mission at Serbian universities was held in Palace of Serbia, on April 18 and 19, 2016 within the IF4TM project. The policy seminar was jointly organized by University of Kragujevac as project coordinator institution and Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia.

The participants of the seminar were welcomed by the Minister of Education, Science and Technological Development, Dr. Srdjan Verbic, who emphasized that “third mission” of universities should be the first, so we need to show that higher education is relevant and significant for the society at large. “The image of higher education is not good as it once was, neither the trust in academic society is good as it was. We need to show that what academic society does is relevant for the society at large” said Minister Verbic, adding that we need more applied research.

The coordinator of the project, Prof. Dr. Vesna Mandic from Faculty of Engineering University of Kragujevac, pointed out that universities besides their two basic mission – education and research, also need to carry out activities which contribute to the strengthening of university-industry cooperation, as well as society in general. According to Prof. Mandic, the future belongs to young people and they need to lead the country, which is why it is important to develop creativity and entrepreneurial spirit among them, starting with primary and secondary, to higher education, with the aim to improve their employability.

Miroslav Miletic, the vice president of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce, pointed out that the Chamber of Commerce as the largest association of Serbian industry works on strengthening the links between science and industry and supports knowledge-based business. Miletic also emphasized that we could not have innovative society if we did not have innovative industry and that Chamber of Commerce recognized the significance of innovativeness for the promotion of the technology development level of Serbian industry.

The EU project partners from universities in Krems, Lisbon, Bari, Brighton and Maribor presented to the participants the experiences from Austria, Portugal, UK, Italy and Slovenia in the development of third mission and the support provided by the government of these countries, national and regional institutions as well as activities that universities themselves are conducting within the third mission.

Besides the partners on the IF4TM project, the seminar was attended by the representatives of Ministry of Education, Science and Technological development, Ministry of Economy, Ministry of Defense, Serbian Chamber of Commerce, Intellectual Property Office, Innovation Fund, Rectorates of both state and private Serbian universities, business incubators and other representatives of academic and business public in Serbia.