Slovenian Madam Ambassador Visits UNIRI
Friday, Jun 02 2017


The Republic of Slovenia  Ambassador to the Republic of Croatia, H.E. Smiljana Knez, Ph.D., was on her first inaugural to the University of Rijeka on June 2nd, 2017. She met with the University of Rijeka Rector, Prof. Snježana Prijić-Samaržija, Ph.D. The Ambassador was accompanied by mag. Jakob Štunf, the Authorized Minister and Economic Advisor to the Embassy and Madam Rector was accompanied by the Vice-Dean for International Relations of the UNIRI Academy of Applied Arts and the Director of the Center for Advanced Studies - Southeast Europe (CAS-SEE), Assistant Professor Sanja Bojanić, Ph.D. and the Head of the International Relations Office, Ms. Iva Tijan.

Starting from the cultural, geographical and linguistic closeness of our two nations, Madam Ambassador Knez noted already established cooperation between Slovenian universities and the University of Rijeka and intends to personally engage in achieving further collaborations.

Expressing a welcome to Madam Ambassador H.E. Knez, Madam Rector Prijić-Samaržija reviewed the many years of fruitful cooperation of the members of the Rijeka University with the Slovenian higher education institutions within the CEEPUS and Erasmus mobility programmes and she mentioned the plans for cooperation under the Horizon 2020 programme, noting that now, at a more prominent departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union, their higher education institutions will therefore no longer be a part of the LLPs such as Erasmus and Horizon 2020. The representatives of the British Council in the Republic of Croatia have recently discussed in agreement with Madam Rector Prijić-Samaržija the possibilities of alternative ways of cooperation between the higher education institutions of the United Kingdom and the Republic of Croatia. The Rector added that a joint cooperation has been envisaged between Croatian and Slovenian higher education institutions, both during and after the Brexit period, with which the Slovenian Madam Ambassador agreed.

Madam Rector Prijić-Samaržija, introduced our distinguished guests with the basic information about the University of Rijeka and presented it as the Open University of the 3rd Generation, which is related to the cultural, economic and social aspects of the local community, with further presentation of the university development strategy as a part of its orientation to its transformation into a University of scientific-research profile. She described in detail the strengthening of the research capacity within the framework of realization of the project Development of the Research Infrastructure on the University of Rijeka Campus, which refers to equipping the Center for High Resistance Technology in Biomedicine, the Center for Micro and Nano Sciences and Technologies, the Center for Advanced Computing and Modelling and the Faculty of Civil Engineering laboratories (Hydrotechnical laboratory, Geotechnical Laboratory, Transportation Laboratory, Laboratory for Materials and Construction Laboratory). Mag. Jakob Štunf, the Authorized Minister and Economic Advisor to the Embassy presented a concrete opportunity to develop cooperation in the sense of joining the project Research Infrastructure Development Strategy of the University of Rijeka with the Slovenian economy sector through participation at the Celje Entrepreneurship Fair which is organized in the period from September 12 to 17, 2017. in Celje, Slovenia. Numerous presenters (over 1500) from the domain of new methodologies and technologies in inter and multidisciplinary areas are represented, which is a great opportunity for the UNIRI to present its equipment (among other things the supercomputer), to show potential in cooperation with Croatian economists who also take part in this fair and to make contacts, with which the Rector agrees.

Madam Ambassador Knez wrote in the Book of Honorary Guests and the meeting was concluded with a principal proposal for the possibility of establishing a Slovenian Lectorship at the University of Rijeka, which will be further looked into and discussed with
the Dean of the UNIRI Faculty of Humanities and Social Studies, Professor Ines Srdoč Konestra, Ph.D.

After the meeting at the Rectorate, our distinguished guests visited the University of Rijeka Campus - the student housing and restaurant buildings and the laboratories of the Department of Biotechnology where they were welcomed by the head of the Department Prof. Anđelka Radojčić Badovinac, Ph.D., the Vice-Head of the Department Prof. Krešimir Pavelić, Ph.D., and the Earlier University of Rijeka Rector, Academician Daniel Rukavina. It was concluded that achieving excellence in development, innovation and research opens up additional opportunities for strengthening the cooperation with Slovenian institutions and economists.

 




Translator: Erna Halilović, International Office Intern                                                                                                                                                                                      
English Language Editor for UNIRI: Iva Tijan, Head of International Office