The higher education team presented two posters at the renowned European Association for International Education EAIE Conference, which took place virtually from 14 to 16 October 2020. This was an opportunity for Movetia to communicate the challenges of the Swiss-European Mobility Programme and highlight the good practice at Swiss universities regarding greener mobility.

An internationally renowned event, the EAIE Conference is a not-to-be-missed occasion for players in international higher education. The contents and communication tools were therefore reworked this year to facilitate a stimulating and enriching online dialogue. Participants were thus able to take part in presentations and group discussions and to gain information through podcasts at this special edition entitled “EAIE 2020 : Community Exchange”.

The poster exhibition area, normally on site, was maintained by creating a virtual viewing space. Movetia had the opportunity to set out two topics that are close to its heart.

Challenges of the Swiss-European Mobility Programme

Switzerland stands out with the Swiss-European Mobility Programme (SEMP) that has been set up to preserve mobility between Switzerland and Europe. Switzerland has in fact no longer been part of the European programme Erasmus+ since 2014 and needs to confront the impact of this withdrawal. The challenges entailed by this specific status include a limited development potential, substantial outlay to maintain interinstitutional agreements and an increasingly wider gap between Switzerland and Europe within the framework of collaborative projects.

Greener mobility – the example of Swiss universities

Several higher education institutions in Switzerland stand out with their regulations on trips abroad which, although sometimes restrictive, are enshrined in a policy that clearly supports sustainable development. The poster showcases the initiatives of five Swiss institutions: ETH Zurich with its tracking system of air flights to reduce its carbon footprint, the University of Basel and its strategy for reducing CO2 emissions, the University of Neuchâtel and its tax on flight tickets, the University of Geneva and its restrictive policy with regard to air flights, and finally EPFL with its awareness project for promoting rail travel.