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  • 2017-11-20

    Södertörn University signs exciting new partnership agreements

    Through CBEES, Södertörn University has signed partnership agreements with the Swedish Institute of International Affairs and with Färgfabriken.

    Third stream activities are an increasingly important area of higher education institutions' activities and Södertörn University is actively working to find new partnerships and new forms for these. Professor Mark Bassin at CBEES and Södertörn University’s committee for strategic third stream activities have developed two new partnership agreements, recently signed by the university.

    One is an agreement with the Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI). Together with the Russia and Eurasia Programme at UI, the university wishes to create partnerships, organise lectures and apply for funding for joint research projects.

    Mark BassinMark Bassin, associate research fellow at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs

    “There are several aims,” says Mark Bassin. “Through our partnership, we can make Södertörn University’s research into the Baltic region and Eastern Europe more widely known and, with them, further raise the quality of our research. We can also cooperate as regards mobility – I will be working at their office some of the time.” Mark was formally appointed an Associate Research Fellow at UI in July 2017.

    To launch the partnership, UI and CBEES are jointly sponsoring a keynote lecture by Anna Westerholm, the Ambassador of Sweden for the Eastern Partnership, which will be delivered at the CBEES’ annual conference on 30 November.

    “The Swedish Institute of International Affairs also feels that this is a good situation and they are happy to benefit from our research and expertise,” he continues. “Sharing knowledge and learning from each other – that’s how the agreement can be summarised.”

    New perspectives from Färgfabriken

    The other partnership agreement has been signed with Färgfabriken. The association between a university and an art gallery may appear unusual, but Mark is enthusiastic in his description of how Södertörn University can use this cooperation to twist and turn perspectives and really see reality from different viewpoints.

    Färgfabriken describes itsFärgfabrikenelf as an art gallery and a “contemporary laboratory", an exhibition site for art and architecture that aims to challenge and involve, and which will “investigate and attempt to understand the complexity of our changing world.” CBEES has already started its cooperation with Färgfabriken – through a recent event about the Russian Revolution and Russian art in which Färgfabriken, Södertörn University and Moderna museet participated – and new projects are being planned. One of the organisers of this conference is Ekaterina Kalinina, a former doctoral student at CBEES and currently a postdoc at Södertörn University, who will also work on developing the collaboration between Södertörn University and Färgfabriken.

    “We have discussed developing a collaborative project on Swedish perceptions of the Baltic region and what this means for our present Swedish, Nordic and European identities. Researchers at Södertörn University can contribute their academic expertise and Färgfabriken has experience of creating societally relevant exhibitions,” says Mark. “We will have a more definite idea of how this will take shape after Christmas, and we are sure to be returning to describe more interesting partnerships in the future!”