Dr Charlotta Sirén from Switzerland: KTU has the potential to be the MIT of the Baltic region

Important | 2020-03-10

One of the European Union goals is to invest in research and innovation as it is Europe’s future. KTU together with partners from Switzerland, Germany and the United Kingdom initiated a project KEEN that aims to help Lithuania become a future European leader in innovation and to support entrepreneurial capacity building at KTU. The project is funded by the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation “Horizon 2020”.

According to Dr Charlotta Sirén, Assistant Professor at the University of St Gallen’s Global Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, KTU has the potential to be the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) of the Baltic region.

“Lithuania’s KTU has the potential to be the MIT of the Baltic region”, said Dr Charlotta Sirén, in the Swisscore Swiss Contact Office for Research and Higher Education article.

Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) with Cranfield University (United Kingdom), Bergische Universität Wuppertal (Germany), and Universität St. Gallen (Switzerland), created a network named Knowledge-Empowered Entrepreneurship Network (KEEN). The objective is to strengthen KTU at the forefront of European research in entrepreneurship as its Lithuanian consortium leader.

The project was launched in September 2018 and aims to improve KTU‘s capacities to exploit and disseminate its research outputs and enhance its ability to engage the public in its research and entrepreneurship awareness, understanding, and acceptance. The KEEN project is crucial to the university’s research activities.

“This shows KTU researchers potential and the capacity of social science researchers to win Horizon 2020 programme grants. Engaging young researchers to tackle innovative challenges of the knowledge economy. Citizens’ involvement in research”, says Dr Leonas Balaševičius, Vice-Rector for Research and Innovations at KTU.

Implementing the project, a knowledge-based network of companies and enterprises was created. It helped to strengthen the position of KTU in the context of EU research and enterprise and continues doing so.

KEEN partners from other universities say that global challenges that enable them to work are driving engagement in similar activities. According to foreign researchers, the engine of activity is sustainable development, therefore, it is focused on the global goals by UNESCO. The project will run until August 2021. During the period left, the consortium will focus on strengthening cooperation at the PhD level by institutionalising existing programmes.