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The “AC21 International Forum 2016” is About to Begin


More than 100 international guests will take part in the “AC21 International Forum 2016” from April 30 through May 3 at the TU Chemnitz – the theme is “Networks of Innovation for the Transformation of Society through Science”

In just a few days, the 8th “AC21 International Forum” is set to begin, which is the largest and most important event put on by the “Academic Consortium for the 21st Century (AC21)” network. Host to this year’s event will be the Technische Universität Chemnitz.

The forum will take place during the course of the Festival Week celebrating the 180th anniversary of the university’s founding. More than 100 guests from AC21 member institutions and partner institutions as well as participants from the university’s external research partners, politics and the economic sector will be entertained with a diverse program. This will include lectures, round table discussions, workshops and other accompanying activities.

A Network for the 21st Century

The “Academic Consortium for the 21st Century (AC21)” was founded in 2002 as an international network during the International Forum hosted by Nagoya University in Japan. AC21’s vision is to enhance cooperation in education and research among members, serve as a bridge between societies all over the world, and enable all people to exchange and understand each other’s values, knowledge and culture.

At this time, 19 universities from 11 countries belong to the network: University of Adelaide (Australia), Jilin University, Nanjing University, Northeastern University, Peking University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Tongji University Shanghai (all China), Technische Universität Chemnitz, Universität Freiburg (both Germany),University of Strasbourg (France), Gadjah Mada University (Indonesia), Nagoya University (Japan), National University of Laos (Laos), University of Canterbury (New Zealand), Stellenbosch University (South Africa), Chulalongkorn University, Kasetsart University (both Thailand), North Carolina State University and University of Minnesota (both USA).

The International Forum 2016 is Focused on Networks

The official program of the “AC21 International Forum 2016” will begin on April 30, 2016, when the AC21 Steering Committee convenes. The committee is responsible for strategic decisions regarding the further development of AC21. The official opening of the International Forum will follow that same evening during the Spring Gala under the patronage of the Saxon State Minister for Higher Education, Research and the Arts, Dr. Eva-Maria Stange. On Sunday, May 1, 2016, participants will be offered the opportunity to attend a social and cultural program.

On Monday, May 2, the conference program will begin with a ceremony reflecting on 180 years of history since the TU Chemnitz’s founding. Among those to address the audience will be the AC21 General Secretariat Director, Prof. Dr. Yoshihito Watanabe (Trustee and Vice-President of Nagoya University), the President of the German Academic Exchange Service, Prof. Dr. Margret Wintermantel, and the Head of Predevelopment of Car Concept at AUDI AG Dr. Michael Korte. The Federal Minister for Education and Research, Prof. Dr. Johanna Wanka, will also speak to the assembly via video message.

Following the ceremony, the sessions will begin, which will deal with aspects of the overarching theme of the forum: “Networks of innovation for the transformation of society through science”. There will be round table discussions and workshops, for instance about best practices to ensure excellence in research and technology transfer. Additionally, participants will be introduced to the TU Chemnitz’s established Federal Cluster of Excellence “Merge Technologies for Multifunctional Lightweight Structures”.

At the beginning of the following conference day, Tuesday, May 3, 2016, the guests will be introduced to the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft’s initiatives regarding research and technology transfer. Afterwards, three parallel sessions will take place on the topics of “Identifying key innovation drivers and creating appropriate framework conditions and infrastructures”, “Developing a network for policy exchange on renewable energy among policy leaders in Germany and Minnesota”, and “Creating comprehensive networks across academia, culture and society”.

In the afternoon, the AC21 General Assembly will come together to make decisions about the development of the AC21 Network for the coming years. That evening, this year’s International Forum will be closed with the formal handover of the symbol of the AC21 Presidency from the TU Chemnitz to Jilin University Changchun, who will host the next AC21 International Forum in 2018.

Premium-Sponsor of the Festival Week and the “AC 21 International Forum” is the AUDI AG.

More Information about the “AC21 International Forum 2016” Program:

Information about other events during the TU Chemnitz’s 180th Anniversary Festival Week:

Notice for the media: You can download a printable graphic related to the event from our Online Press Photo Archive folder “Internationales”: Beginning on May 1, 2016, photos from the “AC21 International Forum” will also be available there to download free of charge.

Katharina Thehos | Technische Universität Chemnitz

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