Insubria University in Serbia with the Lombardy Region: agreements signed with the country's three most important universities

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The new international mission of the University of Insubria alongside the Lombardy Region in the Republic of Serbia ended successfully on 5 December. The rector's delegate for internationalisation, Professor Giorgio Maria Zamperetti, travelled to Belgrade with the governor Attilio Fontana and the undersecretary for international relations Raffaele Cattaneo, to take part in the Innovation Forum, organised by the Italian Embassy in order to promote and strengthen relations between the Italian and Serbian innovation ecosystems.

The fulcrum of the mission took place with the signing ceremony by Professor Zamperetti of the memorandums of understanding with the rectors of the country's three most important universities, in the presence of the institutional offices of the Lombardy Region, the Italian Ambassador to Belgrade Luca Gori, and the Serbian Minister of Science, Technological Development and Innovation Jelena Begović.

The first of these agreements was signed with the University of Belgrade, the oldest and most important university in Serbia: founded in 1808, it ranks 384th among the best universities in the world according to the Cwur index and is recognised as the second best university in Eastern Europe. It has around 90,000 students and 4,200 lecturers and researchers in 31 faculties, 11 research centres and 7 university clusters.

The second, with the University of Novi Sad, located about an hour north of the capital, the second largest university in Serbia; founded in 1960, it has around 50,000 students, 3,800 lecturers and researchers, 14 faculties on four different campuses offering 320 first, second and third cycle study programmes. As a ranking, it ranks among the top 1,000 universities in the world according to the Arwu index.

The latest protocol was signed with the University of Niš, located about two hours south of Belgrade; it was founded in 1965, has about 20,000 students and 1,500 lecturers and researchers in 14 faculties, most of which offer some courses in English for exchange students.

"Serbia," emphasises Prof. Zamperetti, "is a country of great interest, close to Italy not only geographically but also culturally, and from an academic point of view it is already integrated with Europe, since it adheres to the Erasmus programme, which allows the free exchange of lecturers and students to and from European universities.

These new agreements will make it possible to increase the growing flow of international students to our university: a strategy that not only responds to the objective of raising the quality of our classes with expertise from all over the world, but is also destined to cope with the demographic decline that will affect the courses at our university, as at all Italian universities. I would like to thank the Lombardy Region, President Fontana and Undersecretary Cattaneo for supporting us in this fundamental process'."I am delighted with this new success for the University of Insubria," concluded President Attilio Fontana. "With the great work done in recent years, the Insubria university is becoming increasingly internationalised and better, and is certainly one of the flagships of the Lombardy university system.

As part of the mission, Prof. Zamperetti and the rest of the delegation had the opportunity to be received by Serbia's highest institutional officials, including the Prime Minister Ana Brnabić and the President of the Parliamentary Assembly Vladimir Orlić.

(Pictured from left: Rector Antic, Professor Zamperetti, Rector Djokic and Rector Madic in the front row; Ambassador Gori, Undersecretary Cattaneo, President Fontana, Minister Begovic and Minister Jovanovic in the back row)