Sorbonne University announces 4EU+ alliance secretary general

13 Jan 2020 | Network Updates | Update from Sorbonne University
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On 2 January 2020, Volker Balli became the 4EU+ Alliance Secretary General. He will be heading the Alliance office in Paris and will be leading a cross-institutional team comprised of staff at all six 4EU+ member universities.

Mr Balli was appointed by the 4EU+ Alliance Rectors Board in December 2019, following a multi-stage recruitment and selection process. He will drive and oversee the implementation of all activities of the Alliance, including the European University Initiative. He will also contribute to the overall development of the vision, mission and strategy of the Alliance and foster external contacts with 4EU+.

Volker Balli, PhD, was previously Academic Director of the Studium Individuale at Leuphana University Lüneburg, Germany, a state-of-the-art, personalised and interdisciplinary programme of study. He was responsible for strategic development, including fostering global partnerships. He initiated and directed the Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership CREATES.

Previously, he was a founding team member in charge of the interdisciplinary major in Governance at the University College Freiburg. His earlier posts include Post-Doctoral Researcher positions at the Universities of Bremen and Trento. Volker Balli, a trained social scientist, received a first degree in European Studies from the London School of Economics and King’s College London, an MA from the College of Europe, Bruges and his PhD from the European University Institute, Florence.

Asked about 4EU+, he said, "Supporting six strong public research universities to develop deep, sustainable and truly innovative forms of cooperation is a very engaging project." He is particularly attracted by the ambition of 4EU+ to offer meaningful mobility to all stakeholders at university.

Drawing on his previous work, the aim of 4EU+ to develop and implement challenge-based, personalised programmes that provide students with the competence and skills they need is a highly promising goal of 4EU+.

"Above all, 4EU+ has the potential to demonstrate and reaffirm the real value of universities in society. I share the conviction that this can best be achieved through intensive cooperation between like-minded European partners - as are the members of 4EU+."

About the 4EU+ Alliance

4EU + brings together six public research-intensive universities: Charles (Czech Republic), Heidelberg (Germany), Sorbonne (Paris), Warsaw (Poland), Milan (Italy) and Copenhagen (Denmark). The Alliance has the ambition to create an integrated European university system, capable of empowering students, researchers and society as a whole to take on the challenges facing Europe. For more information, please visit:

This article was first published 9 January 2020 by Sorbonne University.

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