Birmingham Professional Event Recap: International Relations – Who we are and how you can get involved

Event date: Thursday 13th September 2018, 11:00 - 12:30

Event date: Thursday 23rd August 2018, 12:30 - 13:30

This Birmingham Professional talk, introduced by Andrea Edwards, Director of International Development & Mobility/Deputy Director of International Relations, provided colleagues with an overview of the main areas International Relations work in, including:

  • Andrea Edwards – Introduction & IDM
  • Luke Wales (Director of International Strategic Engagement) – China
  • Richard Brunt (International Partnerships Co-ordinator) – Brazil
  • Catherine Lemon (International Development Manager) – North America
  • Wenwei Wu (International Development Manager) – India & BISS (Birmingham International Summer School)
  • Allan McKinley (International Development Officer) – BIEF (Birmingham International Engagement Fund), Agreements & Erasmus Staff Mobility

The talks provided introductions to the core locations International Relations focuses on in each country, how they work to raise the university’s profile overseas, and make links and opportunities for academic staff to utilise including joint funding and partnerships with academics overseas. Attendees also learnt how they recruit PhD students and put on international cultural events.

Of particular interest to professional services staff, the team spoke of the exciting overseas opportunities available to them through the BIEF & Erasmus staff mobility scheme, through which they could potentially arrange to visit another university to gain valuable insight into best practices. They also welcomed everyone to get in touch with ideas on how they could work together in the future.

To close the session, the floor was opened to questions, with a notable area of concern for staff being how Brexit may potentially affect the university. The International Relations team responded that in previous years Europe has not been a focus for them as those links have formed naturally on their own. However, in light of Brexit being on the horizon, they recognise that these links need to be formally reinforced and that the university’s European partners need reassurance of their commitment. In light of this, International Relations will be focusing much more on Europe going forward.  

Quotes from participants

“The individual presentations were really interesting and gave a great insight into international relations strategies.”

“I had no prior knowledge of International Relations so the brief info on all areas was helpful.”

“Informative presentation on the work we do/impact we make on other parts of the world.”

“I developed an understanding of academic connections in Europe and wider world with the College.”

Further resources

More about the Birmingham Professional

Be sure to check out all forthcoming Birmingham Professional events from the College of Social Sciences.

  • Follow CoSS Birmingham Professional on Twitter at @CoSS_BP.
  • Find out about more courses on offer to support Professional Services staff from POD.

Would you like to see more Birmingham Professional sessions like this on offer, or do you have ideas for sessions that would be beneficial to staff? If so please let us know via email.