The European Dual Studies University


A successful first edition of the EU4Dual Conference was held in Malta

Paola, Malta – April 19, 2024

The Malta College of Arts, Science, and Technology (MCAST) hosted the 1st edition of the European Dual Higher Education Conference (EU4Dual) on campus in Paola from 8 April to 11 April, which had nearly 250 attendees.

The conference’s main objective was to delve into the ever-evolving landscape of work and educational policies, offering a platform for visionary discussions and practical solutions. Two main themes were discussed during the conference: the ‘Future of Work’, where issues such as technological disruptions, remote working dynamics, and skills needed for industry 5.0 were discussed, and ‘Dual Higher Education’, with discussions focusing on policy tasks that help shape the future of education.

The conference was inaugurated with keynote addresses from a distinguished panel of speakers, including MCAST Principal and CEO Professor Joachim James Calleja, former Minister Evarist Bartolo, Academic Vice-Rector and Coordinator at EU4Dual Prof Jon Altuna, and World Association for Co-operative & Work-integrated Education (WACE) Dr Norah McRae, industry representative Dr Markus Tomaschitzeach, each bringing their unique perspectives to the event.

In a video address, the European Commissioner of Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth Iliana Ivanova said, “I am impressed by the work you have initiated in just one year preparing five specialised inter-disciplinary dual Masters and developing a quality framework for dual studies. Your ambition for academic mobility between institutions shows you have set a high standard. At European level, we are committed to supporting this project under the European University initiative.”

Key international guest speakers on the second day of the conference included Dr Oonagh McGirr, the Strategic Leader for International Tertiary Education at FRSA Educational Foundation; Dr John Edwards, the Secretary General of the European Association of Institutions in Higher Education (EURASHE); and the Executive and Global Strategy Council Member of the World Association for Cooperative and Work-Integrated Education (WACE).

Several local and international academic thought leaders, educators, researchers, and industry professionals participated in work package meetings organised during the initiative. These presentations enabled participants to delve into practical strategies, emerging trends, and collaborative approaches, fostering a transformative impact on dual education.

The alliance announced that Mondragon University in the Basque Region in Spain and Ecole Superieure des Technologies Industrielles Avancees in France will jointly lead the next conference.

Read more in The Malta Independent and Malta Today, or watch the best highlights below.