Hague campus to become international academic centre
Within the next five years, Leiden University wants its campus in The Hague to become a leading international academic centre with research and teaching that correspond with the city’s profile. All of the faculties will help achieve this, and the University has also signed a partnership agreement with the municipality of The Hague.
Four new themes
The University has selected four themes on which its research and teaching in The Hague will focus:
- international justice, peace and security
- politics and public administration
- urban issues
- health and health care (in close collaboration with the LUMC)
These four research themes correspond with the profile of the city of The Hague and will help promote the health and welfare of its more than half million inhabitants. All faculties will pursue activities in The Hague, and the facilities (teaching, research, library) for students and staff on the campus there will be expanded.
Academic teaching centre
The University plans to drastically increase its teaching and research activities in The Hague in the coming years to become an academic centre offering a total of 15 full-time degree programmes. The plans focus on a number of new English-taught bachelor’s and master’s programmes that correspond with the four themes. In addition, it will develop new programmes in The Hague for professionals covering such areas as policing, governance, security and leadership, and increase the international summer schools that it has to offer.
New Student Centre
The University expects the number of students following its programmes in The Hague to have grown to 4,500 by 2020. One plan for these students is to realise a Student Centre where they can also meet in their free time for social and cultural activities. The teaching and research will be concentrated in the three main locations of the University: the University College at Anna van Buerenplein, the Schouwburgstraat and the Wijnhaven Complex, which will be completed this autumn.
Vibrant student and knowledge city
The municipality of The Hague is also providing financial backing for the University’s plans. Alderwoman Ingrid van Engelshoven (Knowledge Economy, International Affairs, Youth and Education) says, ‘We are pleased with the plans of Leiden University. The University is focusing its teaching and research ambitions in The Hague on clusters that link closely to our city’s profile. This will help the knowledge economy to develop and will bolster the profile of The Hague as International City of Peace and Justice. We also want our city to become a vibrant student city with all the associated facilities.’
New opportunities, also for research
Rector Magnificus and President of the Executive Board of the University, Carel Stolker, says about the partnership, ‘Since 1998, our University has been a university in two cities: Leiden and The Hague. The Hague is a very different city from Leiden, with important organisations and tribunals, and a much larger population of a different composition. This means new questions for our teaching and research. The University wants to tackle the themes that characterise the city, such as international justice, peace and security. In addition, The Hague is the national centre of politics and public administration. A city like this obviously needs an academic presence.’
Big questions facing society
‘A clear focus on the issues that the city and society are facing will make it possible for our academics to help solve the big problems facing society. This could mean research into big data at our Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, or cybersecurity, international arbitration – by the Faculty of Law – or governance issues at the Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs and the Faculty of Social Sciences. And then, since only recently we have the LUMC’s medical research and GP training. We also want to conduct research into current urban issues relating to care and youth care, the growing diversity of groups in the population, behavioural problems in young people, radicalisation and social tensions in neighbourhoods. Our Leiden-Delft-Erasmus knowledge alliance will make an even greater contribution to the teaching and research in the municipality of The Hague. For instance, in the coming years Delft University of Technology will offer a master’s programme at our university, and we hope that this will lead to more collaboration between the partners.’
Relationship with Leiden
‘There are new developments in The Hague, but we also experienced significant growth in Leiden in recent years. Leiden will always be the city where we began, with our Academy Building and Executive Board. The growth of our university in The Hague will therefore not be at the expense of Leiden, but will strengthen it instead. More research and teaching opportunities in The Hague will consolidate the position of the University as a whole. This will benefit both branches of the University. The Hague gives us new opportunities in an increasingly international world where decisions are made that affect the whole world. After New York and Geneva, The Hague is the third UN city in the world!'