As one of the world’s most innovative universities, the University of Zurich promotes collaboration across traditional boundaries.To promote international cooperation in teaching, research and other fields of mutual interest, UZH has signed formal agreements with numerous universities and other educational and research institutions around the world. There are different types of agreements which create opportunities that are mutually beneficial to those involved.
Table of contents
1. Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
These cooperation agreements are recommended for initial or general partnerships without financial implications. An MoU states the interest between UZH and a comparable international institution to cooperate in teaching and research activities of mutual interest and is used to anchor a research collaboration more officially.
Agreements at the level of the institute or faculty are usually initiated by the institute or the faculty. Agreements at the university level are negotiated by the International Relations Office in cooperation with the faculties.
UZH provides a template for MoUs (see box). The content can be adapted depending on the project and the negotiations. The International Relations Office serves as the main contact for units initiating an MoU, provides support in drafting and concluding MoUs and maintains a database and an archive of the original documents.
Any MoU must be approved by the International Relations Office (content aspects) in consultation with UZH Legal Services (legal aspects). The International Relations Office coordinates the obtaining of the signatures. On the part of UZH, two signatories are required; one signatory must be a member of the Executive Board of the University.
2. Exchange Agreements
Exchange agreements establish the structure for UZH students to enroll full time at a comparable international institution, while an equal number of students from the counterpart enroll full time at UZH. An MoU is generally executed before the process of negotiating and developing an exchange agreement. The Global Student Experience team is coordinating all exchange agreements for UZH (firstname.lastname@example.org).
3. Joint Teaching Agreements
Joint teaching agreements establish an academic structure to apply shared coursework to two degrees from two universities. Based on this agreement each institution will grant a separate academic award.
4. Research Project Agreements
For most research projects, no agreement is needed. To anchor the research collaboration more officially, the appropriate form of agreement is the MoU.
For approval of legal aspects of an agreement, the International Relations Office works in consultuation with UZH Legal Services. If intellectual property and patent laws and rights are involved, the research agreement must also be approved by Unitectra.
Research agreements in the context of the Framework Programs of the European Union and other research agreements are checked by EU Grants Access.
Signature authority policy at UZH
(Reglement über die Unterzeichnung von nicht-finanzwirksamen Verträgen an der UZH, 23.05.2013):
- University-level agreements: University-level agreements must be signed by two members of the Executive Board of the University or one member of the Executive Board of the University and the Secretary General.
- Faculty-level agreements: Faculty-level agreements must be signed on behalf of the Faculty by one member of the Executive Board of the University and the Dean or Assistant Dean.
- Institute-level agreements: Institute-level agreements must be signed by the Dean or Assistant Dean and the Director of the Institute or a Professor of the Institute.