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The LEAD project, coordinated by Vrije Universiteit Brussel and started in October 2015, is coming to an end with a final conference at the VUB campus from 10 to 13 September 2018. The project – a so-called ERASMUS+ KA2 Capacity Building Project – aims to enhance the capacity of higher education institutions related to governance and academic leadership in the context of innovation and internationalisation of higher education. Supported by the European Commission, it has succesfully brought together experts and stakeholders in university governance and academic leadership from EU and China.
The LEAD project organised already two dissemination conferences in China, one in Beijing and one in Kunming, with the specific purpose of disseminating the outcomes of several LEAD project workshops to a targeted audience of Chinese academic leaders.
The first LEAD Dissemination Conference was held on 10 July at the National Academy of Education Administration (NAEA) in Beijing. The conference was attended by more than 100 participants, the majority of which were from Chinese universities.
Chinese middle level academic leaders receiving training at NAEA also joined the conference. The LEAD conference offered a good opportunity for the participants to be updated with the LEAD project results as well as the objectives and opportunities of Erasmus+, and more specifically KA2 capacity building in higher education (CBHE) projects.
The dissemination events introduced the LEAD project results, findings, and two concrete deliverables of the LEAD project: the LEAD Book and LEAD MOOC. Moreover, partner universities presented their own strategies and actions for implementing the project and disseminating LEAD project results within and outside their own institution.
During the closing session of LEAD Dissemination Conference at NAEA, the Executive President of NAEA, Prof. Ma Junjie and Prof. Chang Zhu from VUB- on behalf of the Chinese and European partners respectively- inaugurated the China Office of LEAD Project at NAEA. Leveraging on expertise of NAEA in training (Chinese) academic leaders and its broad network of higher education institutions, the LEAD China Office will build on LEAD outcomes and it will try to design programs offering training and exchange opportunities to Europeans and Chinese beneficiaries.
The second LEAD Dissemination conference was hosted by Yunnan Normal University (YNNU) on 12 and 13 July. Prof. Liu Jian, Vice president of YNNU opened the conference and a keynote speech on ‘Academic leadership for continuous change’ was delivered by Prof. Yasar Kondakci, from Middle East Technical University (METU). The LEAD project output and outcomes, and in particular, the LEAD Book and LEAD MOOC were presented. The partner universities further exchanged views on implementation actions and dissemination strategies of LEAD project results within and beyond their institutions.
The second day of the conference was dedicated to discussions on the LEAD MOOC and presentations on MOOC platforms’ features and functionalities were delivered by Prof. Kursat Cagiltay from METU and Prof. Chang Zhu from VUB.