Erasmus Policy Statement

Erasmus Policy Statement

Central European University (CEU) is an English speaking research-intensive university established in 1991, offering masters and doctoral programs in the social sciences, humanities, law, management, and public policy. CEU recruits students from over 150 countries and hires academic and administrative staff from over 40 countries. It has a dual citizenship, American and Hungarian; it was established through a law adopted by the Hungarian Parliament, and has a charter granted by the New York State Education Department. CEU is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (U.S.) and by the Hungarian Accreditation Committee.

CEU's mission is to actively promote the values of an open society through high-level research, research-based teaching, and civic engagement. Its distinctive educational program builds on the most valuable Central European intellectual traditions; on the research tradition of the great American universities; on the international diversity of its faculty, students and staff; on its commitment to social service; and on its own history of academic and policy achievements in transforming the closed communist inheritance. CEU aims at excellence in the mastery of established knowledge, in the creation of new knowledge, and in the practical applications of both, in particular through their policy implications.

In its first decade of existence CEU endeavored and indeed succeeded in making a contribution to promoting open society and democracy in Central and Eastern Europe. It sought to contribute to progressive higher education, innovative academic research, and the development of democracy, primarily in the former socialist countries of the region. As the University has gradually become more global in its identity and outreach, it has begun to educate new generations of intellectuals and practitioners from around the world. CEU's distinctive transnational character, with no dominant nationality and a hybrid intellectual tradition has made it an emerging new model for international education.

CEU enthusiastically supports the European modernization and internationalization agenda in higher education. It embraced the Bologna Process from the very beginning, as well as the project of the European Research Area, actively partaking in the modernization of higher education across Europe, while also cultivating ties with universities in other parts of the world.
Participating in the Erasmus Programme has been an integral part of CEU's institutional strategy. Erasmus has helped to enhance the mobility of staff and students at CEU, as well as the participation in European and international cooperation projects, with excellent results. CEU has also participated in Erasmus Mundus Joint Masters, Jean Monnet and Multi-Lateral Erasmus projects. Bilateral academic cooperation holds an important role in the life of the CEU. Our departments have over 100 valid Erasmus agreements with counterparts from all European countries. Given the fact that CEU has no bachelor programs, the target groups for mobility are students in the second and third cycles, as well as the academic and administrative staff. To create a flexible framework for students from around the world moving from bachelor to the master level, CEU offers both one-year and two-year masters programs. CEU is coordinator of an Erasmus Mundus Masters Programme consortium in public policy (Mundus MAPP, 2007-20017); partner in the EMMAs in Environmental Sciences, Policy and Management (MESPOM, 2006-2016) and in Women's and Gender Studies (GEMMA, 2007-2017). All EMMA courses lead to joint degrees accredited in Hungary; all three have been renewed for a second cycle of funding.

CEU's degree-giving units have participated in eight Marie Curie networks for joint doctoral and post doctoral research training, which offer single degrees with joint diploma supplement. The CEU Summer University coordinated a Marie Curie Early-Stage Training Network which was involved in training post-doctoral researchers over several years in the field of Roma integration.

Several CEU researchers have benefited from the Marie Curie Intra-European fellowships as well as Career Integration Grants, which is especially important for our mobile faculty. Incoming Marie Curie research fellows are valued members of CEU academic community.

One of CEU's main areas of interest is public policy. We promote policy debates and exchanges between the academic world and policy makers, with EU policy priorities as a major focus, as well as educational and research activities that provide students, researchers, and practitioners with analytical tools needed to understand the special nature of the multi-level policy making and implementation in the EU. CEU's Centers for European Union Research and for EU Enlargement Studies are led by a Jean Monnet Chair and Jean Monnet ad personam Chair respectively.

CEU faculty engages in research projects in collaboration with universities in the United States and Canada within the framework of National Science Foundation and Social Science Research Council Projects. CEU is an active member of the European University Association and of the Council of Graduate Schools in the US.

In order to enhance the diversity of its students and faculty and as a means to promote high academic standards, CEU cooperates with other universities and higher education organizations. CEU has participated in more than a hundred collaborative research projects funded by the Framework Programmes and other EU schemes, and it also pursues collaboration without EU support. For example, with the participation of EHESS and EPHE of Sorbonne, Humboldt Universty, and the Istituto Italiano di Scienze Umane, a joint European doctoral program is offered focusing on Europe and the Invention of Modernity; Europe and Religion; Europe in its Global Context; a dual LLM degree will be offered with Case Western University from 2014. CEU faculty engages in research projects in collaboration with universities in the United States and Canada within the framework of National Science Foundation and Social Science Research Council Projects. CEU is an active member of the European University Association and of the Council of Graduate Schools in the US.

Receiving visiting lecturers (including under Erasmus) adds to the international character of our education. Opportunities provided to our own academics to visit universities around and outside Europe directly lead to enhanced cooperation in joint teaching programs and multi-lateral research activities. CEU's administrative staff also benefits from international cooperation activities.

CEU has a dedicated Academic Cooperation and Research Support Office (ACRO), which is responsible for coordinating international co-operation and providing administrative support for CEU research activities and projects. ACRO assists CEU staff and students to seek and secure partnerships and support for their academic mobility, cooperation and research. The Erasmus Coordinator is a member of ACRO's staff and activities related to the Erasmus and other collaborative efforts are also managed centrally by this office.

Over 80% of CEU's students come from countries outside Hungary. As a densely international university, CEU offers educational opportunities for students from all around Europe and brings them together with students from other parts of the world. CEU's dual accreditation and flexible degree structure provides an opportunity for students with highly diverse educational backgrounds to participate in graduate education that answers to the best academic standards. Given its highly international student body, CEU is an ideal host to students participating in Erasmus mobility schemes. CEU's generous financial aid program benefits over 85% percent of its masters students and 100% of its doctoral students. The program has enabled CEU to attract students from lower-income areas of Europe. CEU hosts more Erasmus students than it has the means to send; it provides financial support to incoming students by waiving their fees. CEU co-finances its faculty members' and administrators' Erasmus teaching and study mobility.

CEU has launched major initiatives aiming at increased participation of Roma students in post-graduate education, such as the Roma English Language Program and the Roma Graduate School Preparation Program. Through our planned participation in Erasmus Multi-lateral Projects we hope to be able to enhance the scope of these activities.

The CEU Institutional Assessment and Quality Assurance Policy helps achieve excellence in research, education and outreach activities. CEU is committed to enhance the link between theory and practice in teaching and learning and to promote creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship by offering relevant learning opportunities. For example, the recently launched InnovationsLab, an initiative of the CEU Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation aims to create economic opportunity in Hungary and the CEE region by nurturing a culture of entrepreneurship and linking academia and business.

CEU is a small private university which relies largely on funding from private sources, which includes its own endowment that contributes 70% of its current budget. Contributions for research and educational schemes from competitive external funding and fundraising are very important. The University is working to increase the size of such funding and its financial autonomy so that it can develop as a dynamic and intellectually agile institution, ready to take risks, launch new programs and support emerging disciplines.