LEAD Academic Network Facilitates Networking Meeting with Members and E-Teach Partners

On the afternoon of February 1, 2024, the LEAD Academic Network hosted a pivotal meeting with its members and collaborators from the E-Teach project, marking a significant stride in fostering academic networking and collaboration. Esteemed guest, Mr. Tao MA, Minister Counsellor for Education at the Mission of China to the EU, graced the meeting with his presence, alongside nearly 30 experts and academics from 11 distinguished institutions.

The session commenced with an insightful introduction by Prof. dr. Chang Zhu, Director of the LEAD Academic Network and the EU-China Higher Education Center. Prof. Zhu presented an overview of the LEAD Academic Network and outlined its objectives for the year 2024 to all attendees. Emphasizing the network's role as a vibrant academic community, she encouraged participants to seek out and engage with the network’s activities, aiming to enhance academic collaboration through the framework of LEAD Academic Network.

The meeting then transitioned into a dynamic networking roundtable. Representatives from eight institutions showcased their entities, detailing the main focuses and interests of their respective research groups or projects, fostering an environment ripe for collaborative opportunities.

A panel discussion on digital academic leadership followed, featuring Prof. Melita Kovačević from the University of Zagreb, Prof. Tianhong Luo from Renmin University, Prof. Hong Zhang from the National Academy of Education Administration, Prof. Hasan Arslan from Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University, Prof. Danga Rutkauskienė from BETI, and Laura Salo from the University of Helsinki. Moderated by Prof. dr. Chang Zhu, the panel delved into critical inquiries concerning the essence of digital leadership, the mindset it entails, the skillsets it requires, and its implication in the academic realm. The discussion illuminated the swift advancement of technology, its varied applications in education, and the pivotal role of student-centric approaches in digitalization assessments. The consensus highlighted the necessity for a shift in leadership perspectives and organizational cultures to adeptly navigate the digital transformation in higher education institutions (HEIs).

Concluding the meeting, Mr. Tao MA, Minister Counsellor for Education at the Mission of China to the EU, delivered closing remarks that underscored the LEAD Academic Network's vital contribution to fostering people-to-people dialogues and exchanges. He applauded the network's efforts and encouraged further collaboration among institutions to collectively achieve academic excellence and innovation.