Global study on the pandemic’s impact on university staff and student wellbeing

An international consortium of WUN member universities along with WUN+ partners is examining the experiences of staff members and students at universities around the world, seeking to reveal the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on their mental health and wellbeing. Click through to learn about the project and to access their global survey for academic staff members.

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Making hospitals safer for health workers: Grant recipients working on remote care system

With health care workers across the world taking on extreme risks during the COVID-19 pandemic, WUN is supporting a team of engineers and scientists to make treating patients safer for hospital staff. Read more here about the collaboration between members Zhejiang University and The University of Sheffield to develop a robot that will reduce the risk of infection on isolation wards.

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WUN Webinar on 'Restarting Research During the Pandemic' to be held on 10 September - Register Now

On 10 September, we will explore what strategies have emerged from both an institutional and researcher perspective, and in response to challenges presented by different disciplines, to restarting research during the pandemic.  We will discuss what we’ve learned from both success and failure, and how the diversity of experiences from around the network can help inform the way we restart of research in this new landscape.  Click through for more information and to register.

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Launch of the WUN 2020 Research Development Fund: Sustainable Recovery

WUN is pleased to announce that the Research Development Fund (RDF) 2020 round, focused on the theme of Sustainable Recovery, is now open.

As the world approaches investment in recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, increasing attention is being paid to doing this in ways that will be sustainable, which is aligned with WUN’s strategic goals and focus on sustainable development. This presents the network with a unique opportunity to initiate projects that anticipate the major investments that will be made over the coming years, and enlarge the impact and global recognition of WUN.  

Click through for full details.

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Restoring the invisible: new network to explore Indigenous epistemologies

The ways of thinking and knowing developed in Indigenous cultures have long been marginalised within the academy and in public life, including in approaches to the environment, migration, and justice. Dr June Bam-Hutchison (University of Cape Town) is leading a collaborative network that aims to restore understandings of Indigenous concepts, enrich existing scholarship, and help to develop new approaches to todays global challenges.

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Maintaining student engagement and attention online: insights from the latest WUN webinar

In the second of the WUN webinars on challenges universities are facing during the COVID-19 pandemic, teaching and learning experts shared their experiences and techniques for helping students stay engaged with their courses during online delivery.  Every university in the Network has been disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and has had to adapt at pace. However, these common challenges have taken diverse forms and prompted distinctive solutions, with each university responding to a specific and locally grounded set of dynamics.  

Click through for a summary of the discussion and to watch a video of the webinar in its entirety.

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Cheap, consistent, clean? Changing the models for sustainable electricity access

In Ghana, the term “dumsor” (literally meaning “off-on”) is a term that was born to describe the periods of electricity blackouts in 2015 when the country experienced persistent and intermittent power outages. Though access to electricity is widespread, communities in different regions confront challenges of reliability, cost, and safety.

Click through to read about how the WUN-funded research group SEN-Africa is working on new models that incorporate the range of stakeholder priorities.  

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Awards Announcement: Addressing Research Needs Triggered by the Pandemic

WUN is pleased to announce the results of its 2020 special initiative to address research needs triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eight awards were made to support time-sensitive research projects whose value depends on being able to collect or analyse data obtained during the pandemic, and on which the collaboration of WUN partners confers real advantage. Awarded project teams are comprised of researchers from across 19 WUN member universities.  

Peter Lennie, Executive Director of WUN, said “We had an overwhelming response to this special call, and received many strong and exciting proposals. The eight successful projects take special advantage of member universities’ cultural and geographical diversity in tackling urgent and important problems that have arisen from the pandemic.”

Click through to learn more about the awarded projects.

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Maintaining Student Engagement and Attention During Remote Course Delivery

WUN is hosting a series of webinars to help member universities benefit from each other's experience in addressing some of the unprecedented pandemic-related challenges facing them.  The next in our series, to be held on Thursday 23 July will discuss the challenge of maintaining student engagement and attention during remote course delivery.

Universities around the network have deployed various approaches, reflecting the different geographical and cultural contexts in which they work, to help keep students engaged as classes have shifted from the classroom to computer screen.  In this webinar we will explore what successful strategies have emerged, what we’ve learned from failures, and how the diversity of experiences from around the network can help inform each of us as we continue to teach remotely.

Click through to learn more and register for the webinar.

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University of Lausanne joins WUN

We are delighted to announce that the University of Lausanne (UNIL) has become the newest member of WUN.

Rector Nouria Hernandez noted that “UNIL is very excited to join WUN and to contribute to its development. We are particularly enthusiastic about the focus of the network on research activities and collaboration, and above all the fact that it addresses major contemporary challenges. These issues are also high on UNIL's agenda.”

WUN Executive Director Peter Lennie added, "The distinctive strength of the network lies in its capacity to bring together major research universities from different parts of the world to collaborate on solving global challenges—particularly those related to sustainable development. In joining WUN, the University of Lausanne adds significantly to our strengths, and to our effectiveness in addressing research challenges."     Click through to read the full story.

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Sustainable Oceans Series: Highlighting Sustainable Development Goal 14 - Life Below Water

(22 June series update)

Following World Oceans Day, WUN is pleased to share a presentation of a series of articles in which United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI) presents ocean science from WUN member the University of Bergen, UNAI's Hub institution for SDG 14: Life below water in the Sustainable Ocean Series. 

We will be sharing four features from this project, a new article to be published each Monday, and also highlight what WUN research teams are doing to address the future of our oceans.  Click through for more.

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Mental health and COVID-19: How WUN universities are supporting their students

Before COVID-19 there were transnational trends in student mental health as well as local particularities, as students face adjustment challenges, the demands of a competitive environment and external pressures like finances and employability.

As the pandemic and related containment measures take hold, click through to learn about how WUN universities are supporting students’ mental health.

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