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Lots to look forward to

When we became a university 40 years ago, most things revolved around the university precinct in Valla. The concept of ”campus” didn’t emerge until we expanded – to around the Linköping hospital, to Norrköping and, a few years ago, to Lidingö near Stockholm. Today we have four campuses.

We are a programme- and campus-based university.” This is one of the first things I say when I present LiU in various contexts. It means that most instruction takes place in programmes, on campus. Other universities focus more on distance education. Our students come from all over Sweden and many other countries. Many spend all day and many evenings at campus, both timetabled and non-timetabled time, to study and to socialise. Good, well-functioning study environments are a prerequisite for good results. Especially if people are doing group work, which for many is a successful method.

Of course we must continue to be an attractive university, which means that all our campuses should offer environments that look good and serve their purpose well. And not just for our students, but also for our teachers and researchers.

The focus is again on Campus Valla, after a number of projects being completed at our other university areas. So we are delighted by the decision made by the University Board at its February meeting. This week the board of Akademiska Hus has made the same decision. What this means is: We will get a new student building. We will gather University Services under one roof – in the D Building – instead of it being spread across seven buildings. And we can make room in the Zenit Building for the university’s innovation office, which is currently located at Mjärdevi Science Park.

The work to update and improve Campus Valla will start this year and be finished in 2019. This includes dismantling the Origo Building – and an obvious question is, Why? The answer: Its location. The new student building must be centrally located, so all the students on campus have easy access. The fact is that research, especially research from our own university, can provide guidance on whether it is more eco-friendly and financially sustainable to build something new than to renovate. Careful planning is underway, regarding how the materials from the existing building can be reused.

Next year it’s time for a new government bill on research policy. The universities have been invited to submit suggestions and views. At LiU we are guided by our strategy map and a number of proposals that we are already working on, for instance concerning the challenges facing the welfare state. So now it’s time for us to devise proposals for what we think Sweden needs, to be well equipped for the future. It’s a broad-ranging invitation, spanning across education, research and research-related innovation.

And – don’t forget that we’re getting together to celebrate LiU’s 40th anniversary on 28 May!


Helen Dannetun


LiU Leaders

Views on important university issues, information and comments from the university's leadership.

LiU leaders is written primarily for university employees. 

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Last updated: 2015-04-02