In partnership against climate change

Kent was delighted to support the 11th annual joint symposium organised by our close partners Kobe University in Japan, through its Brussels European Centre, and the Vrije Universiteit Brussels (VUB), Belgium.

The Brussels-based event took place on 20th October in the build up to COP26. To complement the focus of COP26, this year’s symposium took a cross-disciplinary approach to driving action against climate change. Experts from across the humanities, social sciences and hard sciences as well as leading industry representatives shared the latest innovation and technology in the global battle against the effects of climate change.

The symposium attracted high profile support from Ambassador Yasushi Masaki, Ambassador of Japan to the EU and Ms. Signe Ratso, Deputy Director-General, DG Research and Innovation at the European Commission reflecting the sustained action of EU-Japan cooperation programmes.

This is the first year that Kent has been involved as a full partner in the joint symposium. Kobe and the VUB invited Kent to take part in recognition of longstanding institutional collaboration. Kent has been privileged to work with Kobe University and the VUB for many years now, through exchange and research collaboration, and as neighbours with our Brussels School of International Studies (BSIS).

BSIS students were able to attend the sessions alongside distinguished guests, researchers and business representatives. From Kent’s School of Architecture and Planning, Professor Marialena Nikolopoulou and Dr Giridharan Renganathan delivered presentations and, from the School of Economics, Dr Adelina Gschwandtner.

Professor Jeremy Carrette, Kent’s Dean for Europe, was invited to give closing remarks to the event, remarking that:

Success in tackling climate change and the common challenges our world faces can only be achieved through partnership. Universities have a crucial role in the forming and driving of partnerships that make research have impact; with business and industry, Governments, and of course within higher education.

Prof. Marialena Nikolopoulou, Kent School of Architecture and Planning and
Patrick Vittet-Phillipe, Advisor to Kobe University Brussels European Centre


For more information about the University’s international partnerships, please email