Empowering the Margins of Europe through Regional and Global Engagement

Putting the margins at the heart of Europe

Our Identity

EMERGE (Empowering the Margins of Europe through Regional and Global Engagement) brings together nine universities, united by the conviction that by working together we can better serve our students, territories and communities.

emerge members
emerge members

University of Limerick / Ollscoil
Luimnigh /Ireland


Universidade da Coruña /Spain

Université Rennes 2 /France

Université Bretagne Sud /France

Inland Norway University of
Applied Sciences /Norway

Univerzita Mateja Bela v Banskej Bystrici /Slovakia

Europa-Universität Flensburg /Germany

Neapolis University Pafos /Cyprus

Democritus University of Thrace /Greece

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Our vision

The priorities of the territories and communities we serve and the locations in which we operate define a clear and ambitious vision as a European University, closely aligned with European values.

EMERGE will empower our marginalised territories and communities to help build a more equitable,sustainable and prosperous Europe for all.

This vision, in turn, has important implications for each of our universities. It implies a shift in the way we conceive the relative importance of our missions and in particular of the so-called “third mission” of universities. It requires a transition towards a more socially and environmentally conscious approach to teaching and research.

The “third mission”, encapsulating a wide range of activities from technology transfer to societal outreach, is usually conceptualised as a consequence of the first two: research and education enable universities to fulfil their third mission. However, such an approach tends to reinforce classical hierarchical models in which research trends are defined by research intensive universities in major metropolitan centres and their impact is meant to slowly trickle down towards marginal 3 communities and territories.

This is why EMERGE proposes a radical shift, which reverses the classical order of three university missions.

Societal engagement is at the heart of our identity, it is the First Mission of EMERGE. Although thethree missions constantly interact and shape each other, it is our societal and territorial mission that drives our approach in research and education and defines the way we operate as universities.

The Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and
respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities.
These values are common to the Member States in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail.
– Common Provisions, Article 2

Our Values & Principles


INCLUSION: EMERGE takes a strong commitment towards Minorities which are frequently overlooked or underserved, particularly marginalised groups who often experience a lack of tailored engagement and personalised services. Additionally, EMERGE is dedicated to providing equal access to opportunities and ensuring that minority groups and disadvantaged groups receive the support they require.

While we emphasise our strong dedication to these Minorities, it is important to highlight that inclusivity, in our view, concerns everyone, not only those defined as Minorities. In addition to this strong commitment, EMERGE celebrates its strong links to local businesses and the industrial sector, with whom we contribute to providing a prosperous Europe for all.


RESILIENCE: In an ever-evolving world where challenges are constant, we must adapt, persevere, and overcome obstacles to continue fulfilling our missions. Resilience is not only about withstanding adversity but also about thriving in the face of it. It empowers us to navigate budget constraints, global crises, and shifts in educational paradigms without compromising our commitment to community engagement, education and research. Moreover, it instils resilience in students, equipping them with the strength and adaptability needed to thrive in an ever-changing landscape.


MULTILINGUALISM AND CULTURAL DIVERSITY: Multilingualism and cultural diversity are at the heart of Europe, as consistently reaffirmed by the Council of the European Union in its conclusions on the centrality of language competences in enhancing mobility dating back to Barcelona in 2002, but they are particularly important in regions, like ours, that are characterised by the presence of minority languages, many of which are at risk of being lost forever. The fate of these languages and our capacity to ensure that they can thrive in the future is embedded in the identity and pride of our territories and communities. Multilingualism and Cultural diversity is about making sure that people can participate, be treated equally and embrace democratic principles and European values.


SOLIDARITY: At EMERGE, solidarity stands as one of our core values, especially in our dedication to our local community and our commitment to uplift Minorities within our territory. We believe that true strength and progress emerge when we stand together, supporting one another in our collective pursuit of knowledge and social betterment. Solidarity fosters an environment where diverse voices are not only welcomed but celebrated. It underscores our commitment to empathy, understanding, and collaboration, empowering our students and faculty to not only excel in their respective fields but also to contribute positively to society by working together for a brighter, more equitable future.

SUSTAINABILITY: We aim to serve as role models for responsible stewardship of resources, actively contribute to solving some of the most pressing global challenges whilst also supporting a socio¬environmental transition of our universities. Embracing sustainability is our declaration of commitment to future generations, demonstrating that the pursuit of knowledge and progress must be in harmony with the well-being of our planet and all its inhabitants. It’s a recognition that a sustainable world is not an option but an imperative, and EMERGE will play a pivotal role in nurturing the values and skills necessary for creating a more sustainable and equitable future.


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Our mission

This project was created with the purpose of giving our students and staff the opportunity to experience all that Europe has to offer in terms of know-how, expertise, talent, perspective and energy. And through this to help them realize what they, their territory and their country can gain by opening up and cooperating at the continental level.


Combined, our nine institutions have over 125,000 students. While we each have varying cultures, languages and educational programs, our aim is to build a new long-term joint strategy with a bottom-up approach which will impact and support all of our areas of activities, from teaching and learning to research and innovation, whilst encouraging new forms of student and staff mobility. In short, we aim to create systemic changes in how we cooperate and operate to the benefit of our communities and local stakeholders.