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The European Commission has selected 63 university cooperation and 13 other noteworthy projects to receive funding under the Tempus IV programme. The winning projects were selected out of 530 applications, and involve 600 universities from the partner countries and 300 from the EU member states. All the 28 Tempus partner countries are involved in the fourth phase of the programme. More concretely, the recently selected projects cover a broad range of areas, ranging from sustainable development and chemical engineering, to intellectual property law, biomedical engineering, and up to social work.
Launched in 1990 after the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Tempus scheme now covers 28 countries in the Western Balkans, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, North Africa and the Middle East. The general aim of the programme is to set up an area of cooperation and modernisation in the field of higher education between the European Union and its partner countries, located in the EU neighbourhood. The Tempus programme is complementary, in particular, to the EU Erasmus Mundus programme and its External Cooperation Window launched in 2007, but also to the other EU regional cooperation programmes in higher education with third countries such as ALFA, Asia-Link or Edulink.
The fourth phase of Tempus was launched in January 2008 and spans over the period 2007-2013, encompassing new features, such as the necessity to implement broader projects, with a more visible impact, involving both larger university networks and more non-academic partners and stressing regional cooperation.