Preferential Partnerships

Whereas the Regional Platforms and the International Thematic Networks respectively focus on the cooperation with a certain region in the world or on a single interdisciplinary theme, the Preferential Partnerships as the Structural International Partnerships focus on the university-wide cooperation with one or more preferential partners around the globe. 

Overview Preferential Partnerships

Countries Partner Institution(s) Coordinator Focus
Australia University of Queensland Kim Verbeken Antibiotics
Art and Architecture
Entrepreneurship & Innovation
Fire Safety Science and Engineering
Freshwater and Marine Systems
Knowledge Exchange
Materials, Metallurgy and Recycling
Spinal pain

Canada University of Toronto Andrew Bricker Health equity & impact
Sustainable systems
Twenty-first century citizenship



Gijs Coucke

Climate action
Digital revolution and Impact of digitalization
Energy transition and Circular economy
Health and well-being

South Africa
3C-Partnership (Tri-Continental) University of Missouri
University of the Western Cape
Strengthening valorisation of joint research
United Kingdom
3i University Network

Université de Lille
University of Kent

Climate and Energy
Communities and Well-being
Health and Nutrition
Marine and Maritime Challenges


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  1. Multidimensional character, not bound to a single faculty or thematic focus
  2. Top-down and bottom-up balance 
  3. Sustainable cooperation across various projects and initiatives
  4. Added value aimed at strengthening the individual position of the partners
  5. Mutual recognition and investment


The goals for Ghent University’s international cooperation are:

  • to strengthen the link between research, education and services to society, within an international context;
  • to enhance visibility and impact of Ghent University by coordinating long-term partnerships to consolidate the leading role of Ghent University;
  • to seize opportunities (networking, funding...) within the international environment to enhance the impact of Ghent University.

Special emphasis is put on collaborations that:

  • focus on networking with high level and/or high potential partners;
  • focus on networking with countries, regions or around themes of strategic importance for Ghent University;
  • focus on human capacity building with partners in the South;
  • align themselves with the overall strategic goals of Ghent University in sustainable development and internationalization.