EDUCATION: ‘The future of UK-Cyprus collaboration post-Brexit’ report made public

The British Council’s report on ‘The future of UK-Cyprus collaboration post-Brexit’ that pinpoints concerns and solutions after Britain leaves the EU was launched this week.

The report was developed to identify concerns and solutions as well as to provide information on the future of transnational education between the UK and Cyprus, following the first Higher Education and Research Forum held in Nicosia in February.

Main findings of the report were highlighted by the Director Cyprus British Council James Martin who also stated how important it is to continue this discussion in order to close any gaps in provision of transnational education and optimise collaboration.

House speaker Demetris Syllouris said the forum in February provided a unique and much needed opportunity for a vibrant and fruitful exchange of views between UK and Cyprus higher education policy makers and actors, in the backdrop of Brexit developments.

He assured his commitment and work, towards maintaining the higher education links among the UK and Cyprus while emphasizing the importance of this issue.

Cyprus, as member of both the EU and the Commonwealth, is in a unique position to seize opportunities arising after Brexit, for targeted collaborations with UK universities and institutions, to the benefit of both our countries, said Syllouris.

He noted that the House Standing Committee on Education and Culture in close collaboration with all parties, including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Education, has acted swiftly in amending the relevant legislation, governing TNE and cross-border collaborative arrangements (franchises) with foreign universities, so as to avoid the creation of legal gaps and prevent vagueness or uneasiness as the UK prepares to leave the EU.

British High Commissioner Stephen Lillie also affirmed the importance given to maintain the strong links among Cyprus and the UK after Brexit and ensured that these will remain as bilateral links as well as through the Commonwealth networks.

This report demonstrates the opportunity to respond to the needs of the Cypriot economy through higher education and transnational education; and British education can respond to that need in Cyprus.

The importance given to higher education by the Ministry of Education and Culture, was emphasized by Dr. Athena Michaelidou-Evripidou, former Acting Permanent Secretary of the Ministry.

Specific measures are planned to upgrade the sector and cope with the challenges we face. Uncertainties due to Brexit exist, however we will work in order to remain major collaborators with the UK for education opportunities, funding opportunities and research.

The report’s key findings were:

Strong people-to-people links have ensured that UK higher education is front-of-mind among Cypriots. There is a desire for this to remain the case

Cyprus’s ambition to become a regional higher education hub provides much scope for TNE collaboration

There are numerous non-EU research funding opportunities within Europe that can be taken advantage of

Despite the high level of uncertainty, there are opportunities for TNE in Cyprus post-Brexit. ?here is heightened interest from UK higher education institutions and demand is likely to increase from both local and international students. There will be a renewed focus on partnerships that deliver better graduate outcomes

The future of UK-Cyprus collaboration post-Brexit report can be found at: https://www.britishcouncil.com.cy/study-uk/HERForumCY .

Source: The Financial Mirror