I-MAT project events in Vilnius

Two parallel events of the Erasmus+ Capacity Building project “Innovative Mobility Attracting Tools for Latin America” (I-MAT) were hosted by Vilnius Gediminas Technical University in Vilnius (Lithuania) on 15-17 November 2023. In total, 27 project partner university representatives (managers of university international activities, academics, and researchers) from 9 universities in 6 countries (Brazil, Colombia, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal, and Peru) met together to discuss the project progress, discuss, and raise awareness on different views and strategies of international mobility, present achieved results as well as plan future activities. During the project management meeting, current deliverables were presented: project website and promotional materials, draft Catalogue of Tools of the best practices to attract students, academic and non-academic staff for International Mobility, Survey on the obstacles to students and staff international mobility in LA countries. The Survey results revealed substantial differences in each country; as well as, specific reasons discouraging both target groups from being more actively involved in international mobility. An outstanding number of respondents participated in the survey (i.e. nearly 4000 students and over 1000 academic and non-academic staff members), and most of them provided valuable information by responding to open questions. Insufficient financial resources, as well as difficulties in finding accommodation, represent one of the main obstacles to the international mobility of students and the lack of information on mobility opportunities for academic and non-academic staff. In addition, project partners shared their best practices in project financial management as well as discussed the future project activities: the development of the International Mobility Interactive App “I-MOB”, the implementation of the training programs in May 2024, as well as the orientation and scope of the Catalogue of Tools. Project workshop activities focused on getting insights into the challenges of international mobility of staff and students and discussing possible solutions. The discussions were organized around five main topics, representing the core structure of the Catalogue of Tools:

  1. Management of Internationalization and Technology.
  2. Internationalization of the Curriculum.
  3. Student Mobility.
  4. Academic and Non-Academic Staff Mobility.
  5. Internationalization and Communication.
Workshop participants provided valuable insights and recommendations for further development of the internationalization activities at universities. The I-MAT project aims to increase the capacity of Latin American HEIs to foster international mobility of students and staff through digital and innovative approaches.