Internationalization objectives and strategies
Strategies, objectives and actions to develop the international vocation of the University of Milan.
Programming documents elaborated by the pro-rectors for internationalization and by the University governance are dedicated to internationalization strategies and actions.
Since October 2018, Antonella Baldi, professor of Animal Nutrition and Feed Technology, Dept. Veterinary Science for animal health and production and food security "Carlo Cantoni" (VESPA) fills the role of Pro-rector for internationalization.
The Pro-rector is also president of the Commission for International Programmes and Mobility.
The function of the commission is to implement internationalization strategies in the field of research and education.
The internationalization strategies of a large university must aim to promote the free circulation of persons (students, teachers, staff) and ideas for the dissemination of knowledge.
In line with this general objective, the actions to undertake will be aimed at valorising and implementing international two-way mobility programmes and elaborating new strategies for research and teaching that promote interaction and collaboration with strategic international partners and qualitative growth of the university.
To improve incoming mobility and attract foreign students we will:
increase courses in foreign languages
improve international visibility of courses through the university website and other sites and networks
create a catalogue of courses taught in English to supplement the courses in foreign languages of degree programmes offered by La Statale
increase administrative and logistic support related to orientation and hospitality
include company courses, which may rely on agreements with associations of firms in the framework of traineeship projects for foreign students.
For outgoing students we will:
improve and revise procedures
solve critical aspects that can affect internationalization indicators to meet study programme quality requirements (number of credits, observation of ministerial indicators, recognition of foreign credits, other course credits, etc.)
inform students promptly and clearly of the different opportunities available under the Erasmus and University programmes (thesis possibilities overseas, fellowships, etc.)
For teaching staff, strategies will be implemented to increase international mobility to qualify the programmes offered and for promotion and communication purposes.
Outgoing mobility of teaching staff will be promoted. Besides generating reciprocity, staff can become effective promoters and communicators for the University of Milan. Opportunities to host teaching staff of international standing will also be incentivised through specific university funding (Calls for visiting professors).
Staff mobility programmes for technical and administrative personnel, envisaged by the Erasmus + Staff Mobility for Training programme, financed by the European Commission, that offer opportunities to spend training periods in European institutions, will be promoted.
Any internationalization process must necessarily consider doctoral programmes. The third level of education is certainly the one most suited to internationalization, especially in view of the importance of internationalization indicators in defining the accreditation of doctoral careers.
The development of research training programmes and strategic partnerships, financed by Erasmus+, must be valorised and supported.
Internationalization should also include the many international agreements signed by the departments. This is fundamental for the definition of ranking and for improvement of the collection and mapping of accurate information, highlighting the many not always evident activities of the University.
An internationalization policy of this kind is also important locally and for relations of the university with companies and associations, who need to be informed of international initiatives promoted by the university, so as to offer students programmes useful for the international labour market.
Training for high-level research is essential to increase the international attraction of a university, as outlined in many documents of the Conference of Italian University Rectors.
For good reasons, the information on the sites of various universities aimed at foreign students refers to the international ranking of the home institution. It is therefore important to maintain dialogue with the 23 universities belonging to the League of European Research Universities (LERU), a prestigious network of which our university is a founding member and the only Italian university.
To do so it is necessary to increase the formation of networks with other large European universities with the long-term aim of overcoming obstacles and designing a new integrated model of university education: in January 2019, the University of Milan joined a large network that includes the Sorbonne, Charles University of Prague and the Universities of Heidelberg, Copenhagen and Warsaw, in which new methods of mobility and teaching will be tested.
The process of internationalization must become an integral part of the life of our university and requires the definition and adoption of streamlined procedures, an effective targeted communications plan, transverse measures and support activities and incentives. For an effective internationalization strategy, the departments are fundamental and they need to be involved to a greater degree, not only in agreeing on strategies but also as active parties who propose programmes and models suited to their specific requirements.