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New project seeks solutions to brain drain

IMC Krems is heading a major European research project that will try to find solutions to the problem of brain drain from areas where universities are located. The goal is to develop concepts that will increase students’ ability to become entrepreneurs.

IMC Krems is heading a major European research project that will try to find solutions to the problem of brain drain from areas where universities are located.

IMC Krems is collaborating with universities in Sweden, Germany, Poland, Greece and Latvia on the ERASMUS+ ENDORSE (Enhancing development of entrepreneurial strategies at university locations affected by brain drain) project, which starts in 2022 and runs until 2025.

Encourage students to stay

“We want to strengthen the links between universities, businesses and municipalities, which are essential for the creation of regional innovation networks. Areas affected by brain drain must ensure that cooperation between universities and local stakeholders helps to create an entrepreneurial environment for students, entrepreneurs and academics to work in. Increased knowledge and regionally adapted models for such collaboration will improve conditions and encourage students to remain,” says Professor Alina Schoenberg of IMC University of Applied Sciences Krems, who is also the ENDORSE project leader.

The project will classify areas affected by brain drain and the kinds of business model that can be successful for each type of area, as well as developing study materials and courses to strengthen students’ entrepreneurial potential. In particular, researchers will study the conditions faced by women and immigrants.
“In order to be able to live and work where you want to, you need to be able to make a living and there the capacity for entrepreneurship can be crucial, both for the individual and for society. We will develop flexible, digital training modules geared towards different professional categories that will help individuals to develop the right skills based on the needs and conditions of the region where they operate,” explains Yvonne von Friedrichs, Professor of Business Administration and Entrepreneurship at Mid Sweden University and the ENDORSE project coordinator in Sweden.

Researchers will also develop recommendations for policymakers to address strategies designed to increase the strategic role of universities in shaping the local business environment. 

Crucial capacity for entrepreneurship

“Another benefit of the project is, of course, that we are creating a transnational network that strengthens international cooperation. It’s hard to overemphasise the importance in these times of working together across borders to learn from each other and identify similarities and differences between countries’ circumstances,” Alina Schoenberg adds.

The participating universities are: IMC University of Applied Sciences Krems, Austria; Mid Sweden University, Sweden; Hochschule Niederrhein, Germany; University of Lodz, Poland; Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences, Greece; and Ventspils University of Applied Sciences, Latvia.