Former European Commissioner Pierre Moscovici opens CIVICA’s first multicampus course
In this brand-new educational experience, master's students work across borders and universities to examine European policy challenges.
“In these difficult times, education is the core engine for promoting European civic values,” says Pierre Moscovici, former European Commissioner and affiliated professor at Sciences Po, to an audience of master’s students from several European universities, who are listening on-site at Sciences Po or online. Moscovici’s live lecture, which took place on 8 September, marked the launch of the Europeanship multicampus course, a flagship initiative of the eight-member CIVICA alliance of social science universities.
The first edition of the course explores “The Future of Europe.” Master’s students from seven CIVICA universities participate in the innovative educational format, which includes a mix of live online lectures, local activities, and cross-campus teamwork leading to a capstone assignment. To ensure the smooth running of the course at this scale, an IT team of CIVICA and Sciences Po staff launched an internal website and a social platform, where students and instructors can access and share information and materials, and exchange on related topics.
Carlo Altomonte, Associate Professor of Economics of European Integration at Bocconi University and course coordinator, delivered introductory remarks at the course’s first live lecture. "This is quite a unique moment, the first time that six prominent institutions have been together to create such a project,” he said about the joint effort to design and teach the course.
For Altomonte, the added value of the multicampus course is that it creates "a single platform" for faculty and students from different European universities to debate and exchange on European policy challenges. Addressing the students, he encouraged them to bring their different opinions to the "truly European work group."
The thematic modules of the course are structured around crucial contemporary challenges for Europe: globalisation, climate change, digital transformation, and democracy. Guided by the 13 instructors – scholars and practitioners from CIVICA universities, students analyse the EU’s responses, with the aim of developing a hands-on understanding of policymaking.
In the course’s first session, Moscovici drew on his practitioner background in various European institutions to provide an overview of the current crises facing the EU. He noted that a more resilient European Union is only possible through stronger collaboration between member states. In his view, higher education alliances like CIVICA help pave the way to that future. “Such an initiative is essential for Europe and for Europe’s place in the world,” concluded Moscovici.