2021 June - Stakeholders meeting to enhance international collaborations

One of the main priorities of HURBE project is to strengthen academic and non-academic collaboration and raise international accessibility. International stakeholders can play a fundamental role in supporting the links with global and regional labour market and social needs

On 9th June 2021, the University of Zagreb organised a stakeholders" meeting with Croatian stakeholders from the non-profit and the labour market sector. The meeting was led by HURBE’s assistant project coordinator Mohamed El Edeisy; he presented the project"s vision and highlighted potential areas of collaboration with international stakeholders. He also presented the trailer to the massive open online courses created by the academic staff members of the six universities.

The stakeholders also provided presentations of their activity and areas of interest. There was a representative of Cluster for Energy Efficiency and Sustainability in Buildings (nZEB.hr), it is a non-profit legal entity registered with the City Office for General Administration of the City of Zagreb and entered in the Register of Associations of the Republic of Croatia. The goals of the association are to connect science, innovation, and the economy, i.e. all stakeholders in the construction and renovation of buildings according to the criteria of low-energy buildings, near-zero energy buildings (nZEB) as well as green and sustainable buildings. The event included the representative of an international company specialized in roof windows, blinds, flat roof windows with a dome, and light tunnels. He highlighted the company"s focus on providing natural daylight and fresh air in buildings that enhance the indoor quality, health, and wellbeing of users. He also underlined the company"s interest to collaborate with project partner universities to enhance the university teaching curricula and the new courses on HURBE with the needs of the regional and international labor market.

After the presentations, an open discussion was initiated. Members from each partner university participated in a constructive debate to evaluate the potential areas of collaboration. The Bosnian universities welcomed the initiative and suggested participation in student activities and HURBE courses. The local coordinator of UNZE, Samir Lemes, proposed the collaboration through the courses of next semester. UNZE’s team also highlighted their activity of internships and the use of equipment that can be shared with the stakeholders. UNMO’s local coordinator, Maja Popovac, demonstrated the intention for collaboration through the activities that focus on the health of indoor and outdoor spaces. She highlighted that it would be beneficial to collaborate next semester  and evaluate the possibilities including students from various backgrounds, also students from interior design. WP4 leader, Milena Tasheva proposed to collaborate through student diploma work and Ph.D. activity through a strategic long-term plan. Elena Dimitrova, the scientific and steering committee member, highlighted that  UACG has a strong research experience through horizon2020 projects that focused on multifamily houses and collective applications for refurbishment. It is possible to create a collaboration with the stakeholders in that area to enhance collective active action in the area of environmental awareness and healthy sustainable cities. Vesna Mikic, WP3 leader provided final remarks about the importance of proceeding with concrete agreements where the stakeholders can participate in HURBE Network, where the newly installed laboratories can provide services for (and in collaboration with) the stakeholders.

At the end of the meeting, the team concluded by defining the following areas of collaboration with the stakeholders:
- Join HURBE Network Agreement (WP3)
- Seminars by Cluster in Bosnian courses next semester (WP4)
- Collaboration through diploma and Ph.D. (WP4)
- Initiate Collaborative efforts to enhance collective efforts to promote healthy and high performing energy buildings (WP6)
- Cluster will participate in the patronage of the project"s final conference (WP7)
The collaboration will continue in the next phase in order to put into action the initial agreements.