CIVICA members discuss inclusion best practices


A two-day workshop organized by Bocconi with representatives of universities of the alliance focusing on topics of disability and on multiculturalism and discrimination.

Great participation and engagement for the first CIVICA Inclusion Workshop, held at Bocconi University in mid-November, which saw participants from the member universities coming together to discuss how to best further develop inclusion across the campuses of the alliance.

The two-day event was organised by Bocconi as part of the activities promoted by CIVICA Work Package (WP) 7, coordinated by CEU, which aims to respond to the challenge of building a more inclusive society and giving underrepresented groups access to excellence in higher education. Several civic engagement activities organised by the CIVICA partner institutions like the Tours d’Europe Public Lecture Series, the CIVICA for all online platform, the High-School Activities and the Peer-to-Peer videos aim to reinforce inclusion within the CIVICA community and reach out to a broader public with a focus for groups such as refugees and secondary school students. Besides these activities, CIVICA WP7 develops and fosters networks with local NGOs as well as collects best practices that ultimately lead to a more inclusive and equitable society.

“The inclusion workshop conducted by Bocconi helps to foster a more inclusive and equitable society by promoting understanding, empathy, and respect for all individuals, regardless of their background, identity, or ability. Opening societies for all and promoting democracy by doing so, is exactly what we aim to do with the work of CIVICA WP7,” says Anna Maria Hirtenfelder, Director of Strategic Outreach at CEU and WP7 Manager of CIVICA.

The Workshop focused on the topics of Neurodiversity/Disability and Multiculturalism/Bias and also saw the participation, through the NAWA Grant managed by SGH Warsaw School of Economics, of representatives of various Ukrainian universities. The Grant in fact aims to keep Ukrainian institutions involved in higher education initiatives.

“We organised the event keeping well in mind the objective of CIVICA of improving inclusiveness, equity and diversity across the network and building a more socially sensitive CIVICA community,” says Aida Riolo, Inclusion Service Manager at Bocconi. “The event had a complete and well-rounded program that saw a mix of seminars and meetings, with a more academic side, and then the added value of practical experiential activities. So from raising the awareness of diversity through to the real practice of inclusion.”

Participants took part in fact in a series of activities that were part of Bocconi’s own Inclusion Week event – including seminars on Neurodiversity and on Biases in a Multicultural Environments and the chance to experience paralympic sports at the Bocconi sports centre. Whilst day 2 of the Workshop saw the CIVICA participants gather together to share and discuss best practices on campuses regarding disability and multiculturalism/discrimination.

Written by Tomaso Eridani (Bocconi university). 

Photo credits: Bocconi university