Today, 20 June, the Accreditation Council for Entrepreneurial and Engaged Universities (ACEEU) awarded the University of Tartu international entrepreneurial university accreditation.
In recent years the University of Tartu (UT) has made a conscious effort to advance entrepreneurship studies and establish partnerships with companies and other organisations in order to promote a knowledge-based and innovative society.
Erik Puura, UT Vice-Rector for Development, said that ACEEU accreditation serves as a guarantee for every classical university such as the University of Tartu, confirming that the objectives established and activities launched in order to support entrepreneurship correspond to global best practice. "The recommendations of the ACEEU experts will certainly help us devise new strategies and plans,” he said. “The whole accreditation process was a pleasant intellectual exercise which produced a trustworthy result, and the university is happy and honoured to be among the recipients of the first ACEEU accreditations."
The University of Tartu initiated the accreditation process in 2017. "We began by sending the committee a self-analysis report, describing how the university promotes entrepreneurship,” explained Kristel Reim, Head of UT Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. “The experts on the committee then visited us in June 2018 and met with almost 50 members of the university."
Puura added that attestation was not an end in itself. "The University of Tartu has set itself a clear target to increase coherence with society and works to ensure that our researchers' inventions and discoveries actually contribute to economic development and improve people's lives,” he said. “That principle was highlighted at the strategy conference on 17 May, and it serves to underpin the university's new development plan, discussions on which will conclude this autumn. We’ve also made great progress in terms of integrating entrepreneurship studies in our curricula."
The University of Tartu Delta Centre, which is to open its doors to researchers, students and companies interested in research cooperation early next year, will provide further impetus for entrepreneurship cooperation.
The accreditation certificate was awarded to the University of Tartu today, 20 June, during a ceremony at the University-Industry Interaction Conference in Helsinki in front of more than 500 participants. It was accepted by Aivar Pere, Entrepreneurship Adviser at the UT Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation.
The Accreditation Council for Entrepreneurial and Engaged Universities (ACEEU) (www.aceeu.org) was established in 2016 by the University Industry Innovation Network (UIIN) and is comprised of international engagement and entrepreneurship experts. Only four other universities were awarded the accreditation prior to the University of Tartu: the University of Adelaide in Australia in 2017; the Universidad Ean in Colombia in 2018; and the Management and Science University in Malaysia and Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden in 2019. Aside from the University of Tartu, 13 other universities applied for accreditation, including the University of Turku and the University of Warsaw in our region, which are considered among the world's best universities.