Last week came to a tragic end. The festivities surrounding the Inauguration of Professors and the banquet at Uppsala Castle were nearly over when news of the atrocious terrorist attacks in Paris reached us. Our thoughts go out to all those affected. Uppsala University has close ties to France and maintains student exchange programmes with several French universities. Yesterday, the University flew the flag at half mast, and last night, the dome of the Gustavianum was lit with the shades of the Tricolour in condemnation of the incident and in sympathy with France and the victims.

In times like these, the gravity of the University’s tasks are thrown into sharp relief—to educate, research and collaborate. To offer our knowledge in the fight against societal issues, for a better world. One of the tools in this fight is the international collaborations that Uppsala University engages in at every level of the University.

Yesterday, the U4 network came together in Uppsala. That is, Gröningen, Göttingen, Gent and Uppsala. We are four European universities with many similarities, who already enjoy fruitful collaboration in research and in other common issues such as academic leadership and internationalisation. Tonight, I (Eva) will travel to Shanghai to attend a seminar together with researchers from Uppsala University and representatives of five other Swedish universities as part of SACF, the Swedish Academic Collaboration Forum.

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