Another three years for Eva Åkesson

14 November 2017

On 9 November, the Government decided to extend Eva Åkesson’s appointment as Vice-Chancellor for a further three years, until 31 December 2020.

“It feels good. Now it’s just a matter of keeping up the work on our priorities and the many vital issues facing us. Right now, one concern is to make the best possible use of the results from our ‘Quality and Renewal’ research evaluation in 2017 (Q&R17). The report will be out any day now. We’re also in the middle of our dialogue with the disciplinary domain managements, discussing the domains’ strategies and continued development of their work. This autumn, other issues we’re focusing on include skills provision and how to create scope for renewal.”
What are the challenges for the University in the three years ahead?
“We need to carry on with our quality and internationalisation efforts, so that we can continue to be an attractive choice for Swedish and international students and researchers. It’s also important to be active in terms of research and education policy both in Sweden and at EU level. In Sweden, two key public inquiries are under way: one on internationalisation and the other on management and resource allocation. Here, Uppsala University has been extremely clear about what we regard as important. In the EU, we’re collaborating in the Guild university network, to contribute both knowledge and understanding when European research policy is drawn up.”

So there won’t be any new programme statement?
“I’m experiencing solid support for the line we’re taking and want to continue taking, so there’s no plan to change direction. Tenacity and long-termism are important for achieving defined targets and goals.”

Is there anything you’re particularly looking forward to?
“I have a strong commitment to Uppsala University and think every issue is interesting and fun to work on. It’s really a privilege to meet so many deeply committed people every day. Meeting the students in various contexts is especially close to my heart. They’re so wise, and their enthusiasm gives me energy and faith in the future! They make me believe that, in the future as now, we’ll keep on helping to bring about a better world.”

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