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On the occasion of the Hungarian Presidency of the Visegrad Group and as a follow-up of Hungary’s HEInnovate activities, especially the joint OECD-European Commission report on Supporting Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Higher Education in Hungary, the Hungarian Ministry of Human Capacities and Tempus Public Foundation (TPF) in collaboration with AmCham Hungary, organised an international conference on May 10, 2018. The conference brought together stakeholders of innovation networks to discuss and present best practices and new forms of cooperation between higher education institutions (HEIs), local governments, businesses and professional organisations.
Andrea-Rosalinde Hofer, Policy Analyst of the OECD and lead expert of the country review of Hungary, presented the most important learning models from the HEInnovate reviews conducted in five EU countries, including two Visegrad group members, Poland and Hungary. Set up by the European Commission (EC) and the OECD, HEInnovate as a tool and as an international network of universities and stakeholders promotes knowledge exchange and entrepreneurship as key elements of HEIs’ third mission.
“Third mission activities are one of the key elements in Hungary’s Higher Education Strategy” said Mr. István Szabó, Head of Department of the Hungarian Ministry of Human Capacities. He added that, in parallel with the EC-OECD HEInnovate country review recommendations, a national HEInnovate Expertise Platform was launched, and after stakeholder consultation, the ministry outlined an action plan for HEIs to develop their third mission activities. He emphasised that the innovation ecosystem and intellectual property management, as well as cooperation between universities and cities - in particular the smart city developments - are two areas where the Visegrad countries have similar challenges and opportunities. To this end, he initiated the establishment of a V4 level HEInnovate expert network. The first step of this initiative was the V4 for 3rd mission conference, which was a good opportunity to get acquainted with each other's good practices and challenges, so that V4 players can boost regional co-operation and get connected to the international network. This was ensured by keynote speeches and best practice presentations in the break-up thematic sessions as well as by networking in the social part of the programme.