Tartu University News

Graduation ceremonies 2019

4 days 2 hours ago
15.05.2019

FACULTY OF ARTS AND HUMANITIES

Sunday, 16 June 13:00

Graduation ceremony of Viljandi Culture Academy

Ugala Theatre (Vaksali 7, Viljandi)

Wednesday, 19 June 12:00

Master’s degree ceremony of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Friday, 21 June 10:00

Bachelor’s degree ceremony of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

FACULTY OF SOCIAL SCIENCES

Monday, 17 June 12:00

Bachelor’s and master’s degree ceremony of Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Tuesday, 18 June 10:00

Bachelor’s and master’s degree ceremony of the Institute of Education

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Tuesday, 18 June 13:00

Professional higher education, bachelor’s and master’s degree ceremony of the Institute of Social Studies

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Tuesday, 18 June 15:00

Bachelor’s degree ceremony of the School of Law in Tallinn

National Library of Estonia, Main Conference Hall, (Tõnismägi 2, Tallinn)

Tuesday, 18 June 16:00

Bachelor’s and master’s degree ceremony of the Institute of Psychology

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Tuesday, 18 June 16:00 

Graduation ceremony of Pärnu College (all levels of study)

Pärnu Concert Hall (Aida 4, Pärnu)

Wednesday, 19 June 15:00

Bachelor’s degree ceremony of the School of Law in Tartu

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Thursday, 20 June 11:00

Master’s degree ceremony of the School of Law

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Friday, 21 June 12:00 

Graduation ceremony of Narva College (all levels of study)

University of Tartu Narva College, Lobby (Raekoja plats 2, Narva)

Friday, 21 June 13:00

Bachelor’s and master’s degree ceremony of the School of Economics and Business Administration

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

FACULTY OF MEDICINE

Monday, 17 June 15:00

Graduation ceremony of the Faculty of Medicine

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Wednesday, 19 June 10:00

Bachelor’s and master’s degree ceremony of the Institute of Sport Sciences and Physiotherapy

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

FACULTY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Thursday, 20 June 14:00

Master’s degree ceremony of the Faculty of Science and Technology

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

Thursday, 20 June 16:00

Bachelor’s degree ceremony of the Faculty of Science and Technology

Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18, Tartu)

 

Webcasts of graduation ceremonies held in the University Assembly Hall can be watched online, in lecture halls 139 and 140 in the main building, and at the University Café (Ülikooli 20, Tartu).

The webcasts and recordings of graduation ceremonies will be available to view on UTTV.

Category: University
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

Central European university rectors: More needs to be said of role of responsibility of universities

4 days 23 hours ago
14.05.2019

At a meeting of the LERU-CE7 network at the University of Tartu on 3 & 4 May the rectors of the Central European universities belonging to the network discussed what needs to be done to increase the financing of research and people’s awareness of the need for scientific investment and to support the spread in society of opinions rooted in fact.

During the meeting the participants agreed that the universities forming part of LERU (the League of European Research Universities) and its partnership programme of seven Central European universities LERU-CE7 must press for increased funding for research from national financiers and from the next Horizon Framework Programme of the European Union. Increased national investment is required, among other things, to bridge the innovation gap between European countries.

“Today we presented survey results that showed that for every euro invested in a research university the economy gets six euros back,” Jean Chambaz, the head of the LERU network and the President of Sorbonne University, told ERR Novaator. “And every job created in a university produces six jobs for society and the economy.”

The European Parliament elections lie ahead, whose results and impact are hard to predict against a backdrop of growing populism. Nevertheless, universities will have to do a lot of explaining to new MEPs and form contacts so that the new parliament supports growth in research investments. The rectors who came together in Tartu agreed that the main criterion in the distribution of research funding in Europe should be scientific quality, not geographic quotas.

The LERU network is preparing an address to the new European Parliament and to the European Commission in which the need for growth in research investments and the importance of universities in a changing society are emphasised once again.

During the meeting the participants also discussed autonomy and academic freedom, ensuring both of which is of growing importance in Europe. The rectors feel that universities need to explain to the public, in layman’s terms, why investment in research is required. In the context of the spread of fake news and false information, universities are centres of scientific and fact-based knowledge. As such, the role of universities and their responsibility in this new situation are much broader than mere academic and research work. It was stressed during the meeting that universities must not fall into the trap of self-censorship but support a plurality of opinions and protect academic freedom in every way.

In addition to the University of Tartu, the LERU-CE7 initiative involves the Belgrade (Serbia), Eötvös Loránd (Hungary), Ljubljana (Slovenia), Prague Charles (Czech Republic), Warsaw (Poland) and Zagreb (Croatia) universities. Representatives of the LERU universities taking part in the meeting were the rectors of the Sorbonne (France), Amsterdam (Netherlands), Heidelberg (Germany) and Helsinki (Finland) universities. The next meeting of the network will take place in Hungary in autumn.

For further information please contact:
Taivo Raud, Director, Grant Centre, University of Tartu, +372 737 6193, +372 5645 6580, taivo.raud [ät] ut.ee

Sandra Sommer Press Officer Tel: +(372) 737 5681
Mob: +(372) 5307 7820 sandra.sommer [ät] ut.ee
www.ut.ee

 

Category: University
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

University of Tartu’s largest ever alumni get-together takes place on 18 May

4 days 23 hours ago
14.05.2019

The participants will not only have joyful reunions, but are also offered tours, concerts, brainstorming sessions, a mass sing-along and a grand alumni party featuring well-known musicians.

The message of the alumni day in the centenary year of Estonia’s national university is getting together and keeping together. On this special day, the whole city of Tartu is there for the university graduates: numerous events take place and special areas are prepared in the city space for the alumni to feel good. The programme of the get-together and the events held in institutes is available on the alumni get-together website.

The easiest way to find former classmates and friends is by means of the university’s alumni network UTalumni. Besides alumni who have spent their student years in Tartu, the university also expects the graduates of the colleges as well as the former and current employees of the university to take part in the reunion.

The day starts at 12 with a gathering in front of the main building of the university, where Rector Toomas Asser welcomes the alumni. Brainstorming sessions are held on Toome Hill and focus on topics such as the university’s future, the uniqueness and advantages of Tartu, and the involvement of alumni in the activities of the city and the University of Tartu. A screening of the newly restored version of “Alma Mater Tartuensis”, a 1932 documentary by Theodor Luts, takes place in the university assembly hall.

At 18 all participants gather in the Town Hall Square to show the feeling of unity between the alma mater and the alumni and join in a mass sing-along. If more than 4300 graduates gather in the square, it will be the world’s largest alumni get-together and a new Guinness world record will be set. The participants will thereafter go to the party held in the University of Tartu Sports Hall. The party starts with speeches, followed by a grand entertainment programme featuring well-known musicians and groups, including Curly Strings, Ultima Thule and Marten Kuningas.

Tickets are available in Piletilevi. The ticket can be exchanged for a wristband, which ensures entrance to all events during the day and discounts in various cafes and museums in Tartu.

More information about the get-together is available on https://www.kokkutulek.utalumni.ee/?lang=en

Further information: Karl Vetemaa, UT Senior Specialist for Marketing, Project Manager, +372 5880 4541, karl.vetemaa [ät] ut.ee

Sandra Sommer Press Officer Tel: +(372) 737 5681
Mob: +(372) 5307 7820 sandra.sommer [ät] ut.ee
www.ut.ee

 

Category: University
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

Research Ethics in the context of Intelligent Decision Support, Autonomous Systems, and Bioinformatics will be discussed in an international workshop

1 week 2 days ago
10.05.2019

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Centre for Ethics, University of Tartu is organizing an international workshop in co-operation with the Institute of Computer Science (University of Tartu) and professor Dietmar Pfahl. The workshop, which is taking place on 10th of May, discusses ethical questions in domains such as Intelligent Decision Support, Autonomous Systems, and Bioinformatics.

The workshop is a part of the H2020 project PRO-RES that focuses on non-medical fields. At this event it is aimed to discuss the role of researchers, research organizations, and funding organizations in promoting ethical research in such fields.

“At this event, stakeholders will exchange on this topic and address what works and what could be improved in conducting ethical research and ethically using research results in the mentioned fields,” explains Kristi Lõuk, project manager at the Centre for Ethics. The problems that this research community faces in science based policymaking (questions about privacy, conflict of interest etc.) are also discussed.

Many experts from Nordic and Baltic countries have been invited to participate in order to share their ideas. Stakeholders from University of Jyväskylä, Chalmers University, University of Bergen, TalTech, Estonian Genome Center, Archimedes, Lund University, Blekinge Institute of Technology, Technical University of Denmark, University of Tartu and PRO-RES representatives are participating. This multi-stakeholder event has brought together high-level speakers, policymakers and experts from the research community

A consortium of 14 scientific institutions from ten countries coordinated by the ESF will undertake an extensive dialogue with relevant stakeholders with the aim to create an Oviedo or Helsinki type framework that could apply to the full range of non-medical sciences drawing upon previous foundational work funded by the EC, and other national and international agencies. Existing codes of conduct, guidelines and principles have been already gathered as a part of the project. Now it is necessary to consult with stakeholders to find common ground and assemble one widely applicable ethical framework for all non-medical fields.

The workshop on 10th of May is one out of eight organized during the project. The discussions held will feed into the work of conceptualizing the framework to be made as a result of PRO-RES. All results will be made public on the project home page for further discussion.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 788352.

See also: Centre for Ethics shares good practises in creating codes of conducts in an inter-disciplinary project

 

Category: Research
Kaja Karo (kajakk)

The World in a Rucksack – UT Natural History Museum Opens Exhibition on Natural Science Expeditions

3 weeks 2 days ago
26.04.2019

The exhibition The World in a Rucksack by the University of Tartu Natural History Museum, is scheduled to open on 26 April at Tallinn Zoo and dedicated to the 100th anniversary of Estonia’s national university. The exhibition will open at UT Natural History Museum on 27 November 2019.

The exhibition observes the development of natural science in Estonia during the last 100 years by looking at the natural science expeditions undertaken by the country’s researchers. The exhibition motto is a quote by Lennart Meri, first President of newly independent Estonia –  Maailm on väärt, et teda enam kui kord avastatakse [the world is worth to be discovered more than once]. The stories selected for exhibition show how the material and knowledge gathered during expeditions help scientists formulate proposals for preserving biodiversity and the natural environment.

“The exhibition focuses on the fields of geology, zoology, botany and mycology, in which the material collected during expeditions is preserved in scientific collections for further research. Visitors can use an interactive screen to learn about the species discovered by researchers from Tartu during the last 100 years and about the circumstances and facts related to these discoveries,” explained Urmas Kõljalg, Director of UT Natural History Museum and of UT Botanical Garden. He added that our researchers have discovered close to 900 species and the locations of the discoveries show that they have undertaken expeditions all around the globe.

Visitors are offered a glimpse of the atmosphere of the historical periods spanned by the exhibition by means of historical footage and photographs. In addition, the exhibition includes a number of objects which were brought back from expeditions and which, in addition to having a scientific value, also come with an interesting story. The exhibition includes hands-on activities for young nature lovers – among other things, they are invited to climb into an expedition tent and to try and lift an expedition rucksack. There is also a programme for the public and educational activities for school students.

The exhibition will open at the Environmental Education Centre of Tallinn Zoo at 4pm on 26 April and will remain open to visitors through 30 October. The exhibition will then be transferred to the UT Natural History Museum, where it will be opened on 27 November 2019. The exhibition is part of the series of events dedicated to the 100th anniversary of Estonia’s national university.

The curators of the exhibition are  Inge Kukk and Andro Truuverk, the designers Silver Vahtre and Margot Sakson. The exhibition’s multimedia solutions were realized by Allan Zirk, Marko Peterson and Timo Piirmann. Expert consultants who contributed to the exhibition are Mare Isakar, Urmas Kõljalg, Kadri Põldmaa, Ülle Reier, Villu Soon, Ave Suija and Kai Vellak. 

The exhibition designs were realized by Salibar. The exhibition was supported by the Estonian Ministry of Culture and the Cultural Endowment of Estonia.

Additional information: Andro Truuverk, curator of the exhibition, +372 514 1268, andro.truuverk [ät] ut.ee

Category: UniversityPress release
Kaja Karo (kajakk)

Take part of planning the future of space missions – everyone has the opportunity!

1 month ago
18.04.2019

The European Space Agency (ESA) invites everyone to share their views about what we should research in space, because planning for the space programme of 2035–2050 has started.

The tasks that will be undertaken are complex and long-term which is why the period of planning is also long. The current programme Cosmic Vision 2015–2025 has created some huge missions. The examples include GAIA, which is working on mapping the Milky Way, and ARIEL, that will be launched in 2028 and is dedicated to measuring the chemical composition and thermal structures of transiting exoplanets, enabling planetary science far beyond the boundaries of the Solar System.

What makes shaping of the new space programme Voyage 2050 extraordinary, is the fact that everyone can share their thoughts instead of only scientists doing so. A survey is open until the end of June. ESA Director of Science Günther Hasinger said that the opinions of ESA's member states are very important, because ESA’s missions are funded by the states – and that means their citizens. The public consultation will encourage a sense of ownership and involvement.

Scientists are expected to participate in two ways. For the communities, fields and, of course, space agencies to join their competences and efforts, there is a Call for White Papers with the deadline of August 5, 2019. Young people are particularly encouraged to share their views, especially in the topical teams. The deadline for receipt of applications for Topical Team membership is May 6, 2019.

Director of the UT Tartu Observatory Anu Reinart and Senior Research Fellow Peeter Tenjes are the Estonian delegates in ESA’s Science Programme Committee.

More information about

Category: EntrepreneurshipResearchPress release
Kairi Janson (kairijan)

The University of Tartu and Estonian Research Council held a networking seminar in Brussels, on sustainable bio-manufacturing solutions

1 month 1 week ago
12.04.2019

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 Waldemar Kütt, who is in charge of leading the European Commission’s bioeconomy R&D Strategy, emphasized that transforming to a sustainable and circular biotechnology industry has become a unavoidable step to achieving the climate change mitigation goals set by the Paris Agreement and UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, but also important for jobs and global competiteveness. These principles are covered also in the renewed EU bioeconomy strategy and the next Horizon Europe. 

The Bio-Based industries joint undertaking between the EC and Industry stakeholders has invested 1,6 billion euros into innovatve biotech solutons during the first 4 years, with 933 beneficiaries from 32 countries. Eleni Zika, Head of Programme for BBI, said that the EU can still do better in terms of mobilizing private investment and funding high-risk demonstration projects for novel production processes.

Mr Toomas Kevvai, deputy Secretary General at the Estnian Ministry of Education and Research, said that Member States are actively developing cross-sectoral bioeconomy strategies, and the biotech funding should be considered when setting Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) priorities. Estonia’s economic potential for bio-innovation lies mostly in wood valorization technologies and re-using as much as biomass as possible, including municipal and agricultural waste products.

Synthetic Biology is seen as one of the most promising biotechnology fields to engineer industrially relevant designer cells, cell factories, and biosensors. Professor Mart Loog, director at the Estonian Centre for Synthetic Biology, exemplified how Europe can gain a competitive advantage in bio-manufacturing by faster commerzialisation and more adaptive, custom-made designer cells, for example deriving substances for high value chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

Graanul Invest, which is Europes biggest producer of pellets, aims to become the continents leading producer of lignocellulosic biomass derived biochemical and biomaterials producer by 2030. Explaining this shift from energy to high-value bio-based products, Peep Pitk, the Estonian-based company’s R&D Manager, explained that both environmental boundaries, global competition and regulatory framework have beed the key drivers for this innovative approach. The company aims to manage the whole value-chain from land ownership, processing and delivery to energy production.

Additional information: Vallo Mulk, Senior Specialist of International R&D Cooperation, +372 5695 0955, vallo.mulk [ät] ut.ee

Category: Entrepreneurship
Kaja Karo (kajakk)

Plasma physicists are developing a technology that will help clean air

1 month 1 week ago
12.04.2019

Even though the importance of solar and wind energy is ever increasing, we are still dependent on burning fuels in the transportation sector as well as in the production of electricity and heat. The main environmental problem associated with the combustion of fuels is related to the exhaust gases produced in the process. This is where plasma technology comes in handy, writes senior research fellow of plasma technology at the University of Tartu, Indrek Jõgi.

In addition to carbon dioxide, which is the most significant greenhouse gas and always in the media spotlight, there are other hazardous compounds in exhaust gases, of which the nitrogen oxides are among the most consequential. When these reach the atmosphere, they form nitric acid, which rains down as acid rain or creates smog.

Inhaling large quantities of nitrogen oxides may cause respiratory diseases, not to mention the damage done to the environment in the form of acidification and eutrophication [enrichment by nutrients – ed]. A price has been calculated for the damage done to health and the environment, which in the European Union is 40–135 billion euros a year.

Due to the hazardousness of nitrogen oxides, limits have been set for their emissions, and the strictness of these limits depends on the source of the exhaust gases.

Many strategies are available for limiting the quantity of nitrogen oxides in exhaust gases. Broadly speaking, it is possible to modify the burning regime or to collect and remove the produced nitrogen oxides before they exit the chimney.

There are many options for removing nitrogen oxides, for example, decomposition into nitrogen and water vapour (reduction) or neutralisation in water. The choice depends on the source of the exhaust gases as well as on the cost of removal.

Incidentally, it is worth pointing out that even though nitrogen oxides are considered to be dangerous compounds in exhaust gases, nitrogen is necessary for plant growth. Plants can use nitrogen for growing only when it is bound to compounds such as ammonia or nitrogen oxide. Therefore, nitrogen oxides are often one of the raw materials of nitrogen fertilizers, so producing them is a significant part of the industry using a lot of energy.

Considering the amount of energy needed for the industrial production of nitrogen oxides and the large quantities of nitrogen oxides created during combustion processes all over the world, it seems like a reasonable idea to collect these oxides from exhaust gases and use them as fertiliser.

One possibility would be to dissolve the nitrogen oxides in liquid. Unfortunately, the nitrogen monoxide NO formed during combustion does not want to dissolve in water. It becomes water-soluble only after further oxidation into nitrogen dioxide NO2, or even better, into dinitrogen pentoxide N2O5.

Oxidation requires suitable compounds such as oxygen radicals or ozone which can be conveniently produced by low-temperature plasma. In such an environment, the temperature remains close to room temperature, while electrons have sufficient energy for breaking the molecular oxygen contained in air into radicals and forming ozone.

Research carried out in the Laboratory of Plasma Physics at the University of Tartu showed that using the ozone formed by plasma is more efficient in binding nitrogen oxides than using plasma directly. This research was carried out under the Estonian Research Council’s personal research funding start-up grant “The role of plasma generated active species in the catalytic processes on metal oxide surfaces”.

The advantage of ozone becomes especially clear with large quantities of nitrogen oxides, which are found in the exhaust gases of diesel engines for example. The ozonators based on plasma technology allow to make rapid adjustments in the output of ozone, which enables to quickly adapt to the changing amounts of exhaust gas.

On the other hand, oxidation by ozone is a relatively slow process and would thus require a very tall chimney, which makes it more expensive. Furthermore, it creates a problem with excess ozone, which cannot be just released into the atmosphere. As always in such cases, a catalyst could be used for accelerating the process.

Usually, precious metals are used as catalysts. The research conducted by the Laboratory of Plasma Physics at the University of Tartu showed, however, that even the simple and cheap catalysts – such as titanium dioxide TiO2 that is used in sunscreens and iron oxide Fe2O3, which is a component of rust – enable to accelerate the removal of nitrogen oxides, and as a bonus, decompose the excess ozone. With the help of such catalysts, the oxidation process can be made so efficient that the efficiency of ozone production becomes the limiting factor instead.

Scientists at the University of Tartu have contributed significantly to the development of this field by developing a comparison method for catalysts and by explaining the processes taking place on the surface of catalysts. The next steps in the research must show that the nitrogen oxide removal process based on plasma technology also works with industrial exhaust gases. The adaption of the technology would also benefit from the reduction of the cost of ozone production.

The translation of this article from Estonian Public Broadcasting science news portal Novaator was funded by the European Regional Development Fund through Estonian Research Council.

Sandra Sommer Press Officer Tel: +(372) 737 5681
Mob: +(372) 5307 7820 sandra.sommer [ät] ut.ee
www.ut.ee

 

Category: Research
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

President of Latvia to deliver a public speech at the University of Tartu

1 month 1 week ago
09.04.2019

On Thursday, 11 April at 14:30, the President of Latvia Raimonds Vējonis will deliver a public speech in the Assembly Hall of the University of Tartu. The event is open to everyone.

Even though the state visit schedule of the Head of Latvia is tight, he wishes to address the public with a speech „Defending our freedoms – the role of knowledge“. Everyone from university students and employees to the citizens of Tartu and other interested parties is welcome to attend.

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The Latvian President will be in Estonia for a state visit from 9 to 11 April. Over three days, President Vējonis will meet the President of Estonia, the Speaker of the Parliament, the Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister and visit the Locked Shields cyber defence exercise.

In Tartu, the Presidents of Latvia and Estonia and their spouses will visit Tartu Town Hall and meet Mayor Urmas Klaas. After the public speech, President Vējonis will pay his respects to the soldiers of the Latvian Riflemen Regiment and Latvian war refugees at Uus-Jaani Cemetery in Raadi. The state visit will conclude with a visit to the Estonian National Museum.

Further information: Sirje Üprus, UT International Cooperation Unit Head of International Protocol, +372 509 7117, +372 737 5615, sirje.uprus [ät] ut.ee

Sandra Sommer Press Officer Tel: +(372) 737 5681
Mob: +(372) 5307 7820 sandra.sommer [ät] ut.ee
www.ut.ee

 

Category: UniversityPress release
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

University of Tartu Idea Lab is transforming entrepreneurship education in Ukraine

1 month 2 weeks ago
02.04.2019

On 19 March, an interactive seminar on innovative learning methods was conducted by the University of Tartu Idea Lab at the Ukrainian Ministry of Education and Science in Kyiv, with the audience comprising nearly 200 lecturers of universities all over Ukraine. The seminar was organised in collaboration with the Ukrainian partner organisation. The opening words were delivered by the Deputy Minister   of education and science Maksim Strikha, who encouraged participants to be more active in using new teaching and learning methods and highlighted the role of Estonia in supporting the development of Ukraine’s education system.

The seminar was the last event targeted to educators in the project "Transforming Estonian Best Practice of Practical Entrepreneurship Studies to Ukrainian Universities” initiated by the UT Idea Lab. The project ended with a reception at the Embassy of Estonia in Kyiv on 20 March. The Ambassador of Estonia Gert Antsu acknowledged the work done in promoting entrepreneurship skills among the Ukrainian youth and establishing the start-up ecosystem.

Among the participants were also young entrepreneurs who had taken their first steps to becoming an entrepreneur in the course of the Yep!Starter business ideas development programme, which was designed by Idea Lab based on their experience with the Starter programme. The young people expressed their gratitude for the knowledge, skills and contacts, which they would not have received in the course of ordinary academic studies.

The best teams were given an opportunity to present their business ideas at the international Startup Day business festival in Tartu. Ihor Levenets, a student at Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv and founder of GiftHub, was excited for the opportunity to meet and talk to Martin Villing, the co-founder of Bolt (formerly Taxify) who he greatly admired.

In 2017–2019, the Idea Lab carried out a project aiming to transform the best practice of practical entrepreneurship studies to Ukrainian universities. The project involved the student-targeted business development programme Yep!Starter and two seminars on active learning and teaching methods to educators. 34 teams from Ukrainian universities completed the programme. According to Idea Lab Manager Maret Ahonen, the students were highly interested in the programme. All in all, more than 500 students participated in the workshops and their eagerness to develop their ideas was impressive. At the end of the workshops, students often gathered around the speaker to ask more questions.

The project would not have been successful without Andriy Zaikin, the leader of the Ukrainian partner organisation,  who managed to involve various stakeholders from universities and businesses in Ukraine. The project started with four universities: Kyiv National Economic University, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, the National Aviation University and Donetsk National Technical University. Today the Yep network involves nearly 30 universities all over Ukraine. Most of them have founded Start-up Clubs that connect people who promote the entrepreneurial mindset at the university.

In collaboration with the partner organisation and the Ukrainian Ministry of Education and Science, two seminars for educators on active learning and teaching methods were organised for nearly 300 participants from different parts of Ukraine. The seminars were supervised by Lecturer of Entrepreneurship Elina Kallas of the University of Tartu School of Economics and Business Administration, and Olga Bogdanova, Vice Director for Academic Affairs of the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies. Kallas focused on creative techniques and their implementation in the study process. Bogdanova introduced innovative methods to activate the learning process. Both seminars were popular among the Ukrainian teachers.

For example, Kristina Babenko from Kharkiv Oblast said she had come to the seminar to update the learning process at her university: “All the activities were useful; I believe I will use more groupwork methods in my classes.“.  

The project  is funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Development and Humanitarian Aid Instruments.

Further information: Piret Arusaar, UT Starter Programme Manager, +372 516 2945, piret.arusaar [ät] ut.ee

Sandra Sommer Press Officer Tel: +(372) 737 5681
Mob: +(372) 5307 7820 sandra.sommer [ät] ut.ee
www.ut.ee

 

Category: Continuing CoursesEntrepreneurship
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

University of Tartu joined the European Cyber Security Organisation

1 month 2 weeks ago
02.04.2019

On 20 March, the board of directors of the European Cyber Security Organisation (ECSO) approved the University of Tartu as a full member of ECSO.

The main objective of ECSO is to support all types of initiatives or projects that aim to develop or promote cybersecurity in Europe. In particular, the organisation deals with the following:

  1. Protecting the growth of the European Digital Single Market from cyber threats;
  2. Developing the cybersecurity market in Europe and the growth of a competitive cybersecurity and ICT industry, with an increased market position;
  3. Developing and implementing cybersecurity solutions for trusted supply chains.

The University of Tartu cybersecurity research groups who join ECSO have the opportunity to participate in the organisation’s working groups and calls for applications. Thereby it is possible to significantly enhance the opportunities to participate in external projects and find new contacts and partners among major industrial enterprises and research institutions of Europe. ECSO members are national, regional and local public administrations, research centres, associations of research institutions and other interested parties.

All research groups of the Universty of Tartu may join ECSO working goups (see list). Currently, the Institute of Computer Science and the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies are connected with the organisation, but researchers of all faculties who are concerned with cybersecurity topics are welcome to participate.

Founded in June 2016, the European Cyber Security Organisation (ECSO) is a non-for-profit organisation representing various interest groups: large companies, startups, research centres, universities, end users etc. ECSO also collaborates with the European Commission in the contractual public-private partnership to strengthen Europe’s cyber resilience and foster a competitive and innovative cybersecurity industry.

More information is available on ECSO website. For information about joining the working groups please contact the Institute of Computer Science.

Further information: Madis Raaper, UT Institute of Computer Science Cyber Security Coordinator, 737 6424, madis.raaper [ät] ut.ee

 

Category: University
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

UT alumni get-together is renowned around the world as a new performer wants to participate: Latvian cult band Brainstorm (April Fool's joke)

1 month 2 weeks ago
01.04.2019

On 18 May, the University of Tartu’s biggest alumni get-together will take place. The get-together is about happy reunions and meetings, excursions, and concerts. The day will end with a large-scale alumni party where famous Estonian artists will perform. 

The new performer contacted the organizers to acknowledge the renowned event and to offer themselves as one of the artists for the evening party. “We are extremely pleased that the news from the big alumni get-together on 18 May has spread beyond Estonia. Latvia is our neighbour and many Latvian students have studied with us. Throughout history, a number of renowned Latvians have studied in Tartu, including folklorist Krišjānis Barons, poet and translator Eduards Veidenbaums, and writer Aleksandrs Grīns,” commented Karl Vetemaa, project manager for the alumni get-together.  

Renārs Kaupers, Brainstorm’s singer and songwriter, contacted the University of Tartu on his own initiative. It wasn’t related to the get-together, though. Kaupers was researching his great-great grandfather’s life story. Kaupers' ancestors were probably Baron Friedrich von Stuart from Courland (1761–1842) and Immanuel Kant's niece Henrietta Kant. The University of Tartu’s archives revealed that Kaupers’ great-great grandfather studied medicine in Tartu. Upon hearing about the forthcoming alumni get-together, Renars Kaupers was happy to perform at the party.

Neighbours from the south can attend the get-together completely free of charge. In addition, free buses from all over Latvia are being organized, and accommodation is also free of charge. Brainstorm's vocalist will spend the third weekend of May in the student lock-up, just as many students did years ago.

“Renārs Kaupers and other members of Brainstorm are not our alumni, but we are very glad to see them in Tartu,” added Vetemaa.

The paid tickets for the alumni get-together can be bought at Piletilevi in Estonia and free tickets at BilesuServiss in Latvia.

Category: University
Karl Vetemaa (karl93)

UT alumni get-together is renowned around the world as a new performer wants to participate: Latvian cult band Brainstorm (April Fool's joke)

1 month 2 weeks ago
01.04.2019

On 18 May, the University of Tartu’s biggest alumni get-together will take place. The get-together is about happy reunions and meetings, excursions, and concerts. The day will end with a large-scale alumni party where famous Estonian artists will perform. 

The new performer contacted the organizers to acknowledge the renowned event and to offer themselves as one of the artists for the evening party. “We are extremely pleased that the news from the big alumni get-together on 18 May has spread beyond Estonia. Latvia is our neighbour and many Latvian students have studied with us. Throughout history, a number of renowned Latvians have studied in Tartu, including folklorist Krišjānis Barons, poet and translator Eduards Veidenbaums, and writer Aleksandrs Grīns,” commented Karl Vetemaa, project manager for the alumni get-together.  

Renārs Kaupers, Brainstorm’s singer and songwriter, contacted the University of Tartu on his own initiative. It wasn’t related to the get-together, though. Kaupers was researching his great-great grandfather’s life story. Kaupers' ancestors were probably Baron Friedrich von Stuart from Courland (1761–1842) and Immanuel Kant's niece Henrietta Kant. The University of Tartu’s archives revealed that Kaupers’ great-great grandfather studied medicine in Tartu. Upon hearing about the forthcoming alumni get-together, Renars Kaupers was happy to perform at the party.

Neighbours from the south can attend the get-together completely free of charge. In addition, free buses from all over Latvia are being organized, and accommodation is also free of charge. Brainstorm's vocalist will spend the third weekend of May in the student lock-up, just as many students did years ago.

“Renārs Kaupers and other members of Brainstorm are not our alumni, but we are very glad to see them in Tartu,” added Vetemaa.

The paid tickets for the alumni get-together can be bought at Piletilevi in Estonia and free tickets at BilesuServiss in Latvia.

Category: University
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

Assembling a living machine

1 month 3 weeks ago
28.03.2019

The scientific journal Nature Communications published an article by researchers at the University of Tartu in collaboration with colleagues from Chicago, which helps determine a bottleneck in synthetic biology. Their work shows where to look for the mistake and what to fix in order to assemble a well-functioning ribosome in a lab.

A ribosome is also called a biological or living machine. It is the smallest organelle in a cell with a very important task: “using” the “guidelines” written on DNA, the ribosome assembles the molecules of a protein. Proteins are some of the most important compounds in our organism, and our every thought, emotion and movement depends on them.

This vital molecular machine – ribosome – was discovered by an American scientist G. Palade, who won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1974. At the same time, the hero of our story, Jaanus Remme, was studying biology and genetics at the University of Tartu.

Before delving into the new discovery made by Remme and his colleagues, it should be noted that it was during the 1970s when biology labs all over the world started playing around with, or to be more exact, started manipulating the hereditary material found in cells. This was the time synthetic biology started to appear.

Secrets of synthetic biology

Today, synthetic biology affects everyone’s lives and all of the sectors in world economy. It might be said that the genetic reprogramming of life is possible thanks to this research direction.

This means that living cells are programmed to behave as currently required. Among other things, it is hoped that this might help beat cancer. For example, a cell might be created that seeks out and destroys cancer cells in the organism.

However, it is also synthetic biology when students produce plastic using sugar instead of petroleum. Furthermore, this field includes the recent news about researchers adding two new letters to DNA thus enabling the creation of many new life forms. DNA with such an “extended repertoire” can be used to direct the synthesis of novel molecules encoded by living organisms.

“Synthetic biology entails the modification of biological machines in a desired direction,” explained professor Remme. “At the University of Tartu, we work on the fundamentals of synthetic biology, i.e., we develop tools. These could be used for various purposes, including better diagnosis and treatment of diseases.”

“However, to synthesise novel proteins capable of doing something that current proteins cannot, we need to learn how to insert unnatural components, i.e. amino acids into proteins,” said Remme’s colleague Margus Leppik. “This requires, among other things, the remodelling of ribosomes.”

Unfortunately, scientists still do not have sufficient knowledge on ribosomes for “rebuilding” them. They do not know how a ribosome should be modified exactly in order for it to synthesise the necessary protein.

“It would be somewhat easier to choose ribosomes possessing the suitable characteristics from among randomly modified ribosomes,” said Remme.

Cooperation with scientist from the USA

Researchers from the University of Illinois in the USA have mastered the recommendations on how to find ribosomes with the desired characteristics from among the randomly modified ribosomes. For this, under the leadership of Alexander Mankin, they have created artificial ribosomes with their two subunits joined in such a way that they cannot break apart.

Just to remind those who may have forgotten – ribosomes are always composed of two separate subunits, which need to bind into one functional whole in order to produce proteins. One subunit of the ribosome is responsible for reading the information in the genes, and the other for linking amino acids into a protein.

Scientists, however, were surprised that even though the “joined” ribosomes of the American researchers can substitute wild-type ribosomes and synthesise all the necessary proteins, synthesis is very slow.

Here, Mankin was joined by scientists from the molecular biology laboratory of the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology at the University of Tartu.

Assembly of ribosomes in bacterial cells has been studied in this lab for quite a long time. Now, Margus Leppik and Jaanus Remme, working at the lab, showed with tests that the main reason why the “joined” ribosomes do not ensure a sufficiently fast synthesis of the proteins necessary for bacteria lies in the assembly of the ribosomes themselves.

Sewing workshop for proteins

Namely, assembling the “joined” ribosomes in cells is several times slower than producing ordinary, two-part ribosomes. A complete ribosome consists of about 60 different molecules and the regularities of the assembly of such a complicated system in living cells is still largely undiscovered.

The discovery of the researchers can be compared to a sewing workshop where new sewing machines are being used but output is very low. Where does the problem lie? In the workers, machines, leaders, or a bit in all of them?

“In our case, the answer is a bit unexpected: only a small part of the machines is operational because most of them are assembled incorrectly,” exemplified Remme. “We need an engineer who would put the machines together correctly, then we could get production going. The protagonists of our discovery are ribosomes or the molecular machines producing proteins.”

“Now that we know why “joined” ribosomes are so difficult to assemble efficiently, we can make them better by using our knowledge on the synthesis of ribosomes in bacteria,” said Leppik and Remme.

So, artificially created ribosomes are like sewing machines, which could be used to produce unprecedented clothes, such as those partly composed of fabric and partly of metal, glass or something even more unusual. “Ordinary machines cannot join fabric with tin. Our research shows where to look for the error and what should be fixed. In order to make a novel machine, it also needs to be assembled in a new way,” said Remme.

The translation of this article from Estonian Public Broadcasting science news portal Novaator was funded by the European Regional Development Fund through Estonian Research Council. Source: http://researchinestonia.eu/

Sandra Sommer Press Officer tel +372 737 5681
mob +372 5307 7820 sandra.sommer [ät] ut.ee
www.ut.ee/en Category: Research
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

University of Tartu IdeaLab sends the best teams to USA

1 month 4 weeks ago
21.03.2019

UT IdeaLab invites teams with early-stage startup ideas to apply for the NGAL®international business development programme taking place from 2–14 June in Tartu, Tallinn and Charleston, USA. Application deadline is 24 March.

Two members of the two teams selected by IdeaLab will take part in a week-long training programme in Estonia, followed by a trip to the United States of America where they develop their idea further with the help of business mentors and take part in a business ideas competition. The teams of all five organising universities will compete for the 3000-dollar first prize.

Last year the University of Tartu team ResDec won the second place in this competition. "The victory was a pleasant surprise," said the founding members, doctoral students Taavi Vanaveski (Neurosciences) and Mikk Puustusmaa (Gene Technology). Vanaveski added that it probably helped that ResDec’s ambition – rooting out antibiotic resistance – was  also a topical issue in US healthcare. Mikk Puustusmaa is grateful to organisers both in Estonia and in the USA, "During the programme we received invaluable contacts, experiences, and advice from mentors". He encourages everyone to participate in the NGAL® programme because it is a great oppurtunity to network and get a lifetime’s worth of experience.

Two members of the teams selected from the University of Tartu will get the trip to America, incl. accommodation and meals, free of charge. All teams whose tech-based startup ideas are not yet fully developed are welcome to apply. More information and application on IdeaLab webpage.

The project is supported by Harry and Reba Huge Foundation.

Further information: Andres Vaher, UT IdeaLab marketing and communication specialist, +372 5558 7359, andres.vaher [ät] ut.ee

Sandra Sommer Press Officer tel +372 737 5681
mob +372 5307 7820 sandra.sommer [ät] ut.ee
www.ut.ee/en Category: Entrepreneurship
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

Diagnosing congenital metabolic disorders in newborns improved in Estonia

2 months 1 week ago
08.03.2019

A new diagnostic method that is most suitable for Estonia was developed at the University of Tartu, which helps detect congenital metabolic disorders earlier and more effectively than before. The new method also helps discover more diseases in newborns with one screening.

The newborn screening for congenital metabolic diseases in Estonia was outdated and the 20-year-old system needed updating.

In most of the western European countries and in the United States of America, a screening method that allows to identify about 30 different metabolic disorders with one screening has already been used for a long time. At the same time, Estonia was still using a method that allowed to identify only one disease at a time, and two different methods had to be applied for diagnosing two diseases.

This situation was solved by Karit Reinson who defended her doctoral thesis at the University of Tartu Institute of Clinical Medicine. She developed and implemented an expanded newborn screening method most suitable for Estonia. This single analysis cycle helps identify 19 different congenital metabolic disorders.

Expanded screening

Hereditary metabolic diseases are disorders of the biochemical balance in the organism caused by variations or errors in one gene. As a result of such diseases, many vital functions in the body may be impaired and cause acute or chronic organ failure, severe mental retardation, life-threatening conditions and premature death.

“Even though it is a congenital disease, the symptoms indicating metabolic disorders are not evident in most children at birth”, said Karit Reinson.

During pregnancy, the mother’s organism compensates for any deficiencies in the foetus’s metabolism via the placenta, and therefore, symptoms characteristic to the disorder gradually start appearing only after birth. These are often irreversible and cause significant mental retardation and shorten life expectancy.

“That’s why it is very important to diagnose treatable hereditary metabolic diseases early. That way, it is possible to provide early relevant counselling for the family and treatment for the child,” added Reinson.

“Also, it is possible to avoid the birth of any new children carrying the disease into the family, because with the right diagnosis, we can offer prenatal diagnostics. The risk for repeating hereditary metabolic disorders in the family is often 25%, despite both of the parents being completely healthy and having no known chronic diseases with childhood onset in the family.”

The newly graduated doctor explained that newborn screening programmes have been continually altered and developed to be able to discover treatable metabolic disorders when no symptoms are visible yet. This is what Karit Reinson did together with her supervisor, professor Katrin Õunap, and on 1 January 2014, expanded newborn screening began in Estonia.

“For the first 12 months, it was conducted as a pilot project, during which we screened 13,643 newborns. During this period, the parents of 49 (i.e., 0.36%) children declined the screening,” said Reinson.

Since 2015, the expanded newborn screening is in the list of services financed by the Estonian Health Insurance Fund. With the help of her colleagues, Reinson has screened 54,899 newborns in four years (2014–2017).

For this, all newborns had capillary blood drawn from the heel onto a filter paper between the 3rd and 5th day of life, which was dried and sent to the only laboratory in Estonia conducting the expanded newborn screening. This lab is located at the Tartu University Hospital Unified Centre of Laboratories Department of Clinical Genetics.

Most common metabolic disorders

“During four years, we have identified a congenital metabolic disorder in 29 newborns. Therefore, the prevalence of the studied disorders in Estonia is 1:1,893,” said Reinson sharing new knowledge. “By now, all of the children have received necessary treatment, lack complaints referring to congenital metabolic disorders and their development is age appropriate.”

The most commonly diagnosed condition in newborns was vitamin B12 deficiency with a prevalence of 1:2,959. “This was unexpected, as vitamin B12 deficiency has never been diagnosed to this extent in newborns. There are few related international publications and the results described in them are rather modest.”

Vitamin B12 is a simple compound, which plays an important part in haemotopoiesis, in the cell renewal process, as well as in the development of the nervous system. Vitamin B12 deficiency is often expressed in the newborn as restlessness, sleep disorders, excessive increase or decrease in muscle tone, developmental delay and, in the worst-case scenario, as a seizure disorder.

Vitamin B12 deficiency in newborns is often caused by low levels of vitamin B12 in the mother’s organism, which indicates insufficient intake of meat during pregnancy and/or B12 malabsorption. Thus, the newborn does not get a sufficient vitamin stock for the first six months of life until they start eating meat themselves. Breast milk does not contain enough vitamin B12 necessary for the growth and development of a newborn either. Thus, in the first months of life, the B12 deficiency gets worse and symptoms indicating the deficiency start appearing.

“That’s why we have always emphasised to family physicians and paediatricians that if they suspect vitamin B12 deficiency in a newborn, it should always be checked with a blood test because treatment is simple and available and the child’s development may gain great advantage from it,” said Reinson. “As mentioned, a blood spot is taken between the 3rd and 5th day of life for screening, but this does not guarantee that the child’s vitamin B12 stores will not start declining at one month and that a deficiency with accompanying complaints will not develop by the third month.”

The second most prevalent group was composed of patients with hyperphenylalaninemia. Considering previous studies involving the Estonian population, this result was predictable for the researchers.

Hyperphenylalaninemias are hereditary metabolic disorders, which disable the body’s ability to break down phenylalanine – an amino acid that is a normal component of a natural protein. Its accumulation in the organism often causes severe mental retardation, but with early diagnosis, these diseases are treatable and the child’s development is normal.

In treated cases, patients with phenylketonuria attend normal schools and study under normal study programmes, and even graduate from higher education institutions if they wish. They have no restrictions in life but to avoid eating excessive natural proteins every day (incl. meat, eggs, milk and fish) and replace them with a special protein mix.

Karit Reinson defended her doctoral degree at the University of Tartu with her thesis “New Diagnostic Methods for Early Detection of Inborn Errors of Metabolism in Estonia” on 18 December 2018. She was supervised by a professor of clinical genetics at the UT, Katrin Õunap; her opponent was professor Kari Pulkki from Turku University Hospital.

The translation of this article from Estonian Public Broadcasting science news portal Novaator was funded by the European Regional Development Fund through Estonian Research Council. Source: http://researchinestonia.eu/

Sandra Sommer Press Officer tel +372 737 5681
mob +372 5307 7820 sandra.sommer [ät] ut.ee
www.ut.ee/en

 

Category: Research
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

UT IdeaLab’s spring semester starts with Idea Hackathon

2 months 1 week ago
07.03.2019

On 28 February, UT IdeaLab organised an Idea Hackathon at Spark Hub to mark the start of a new semester of the Starter business ideas incubation programme. All students and recent graduates of all schools were welcome to pitch their business or project ideas and join other teams.

The teams will be working on their business ideas in the course of a semester-long programme that offers hands-on workshops and ends with Kaleidoskoop, the biggest business ideas competition in South Estonia, on 17 May at the Delta Business Conference. The Kaleidoskoop winner will get a chance to pitch at the University Startup World Cup in Copenhagen.

Last semester’s Kaleidoskoop winning team was TRIT, whose goal is to make the ordering of translation services easier and more convenient. The Starter programme gave the team confidence that their service is necessary and their idea feasible. “For the TRIT team, the Starter programme meant many “firsts” – the first time to share our idea with strangers, the first mentor meeting, the first contest, etc. Starter gave us a push to expand our comfort zone and boosted us to enter the entrepreneurship world,” said the TRIT team leader Eha Mäesalu, adding that although they needed to go on independently now, the IdeaLab and Starter people would always be there to help and advise.

Besides Starter, the IdeaLab will start a new E-Boat Accelerator programme, which aims to find e-solutions for healthcare. Entrepreneurial-minded teams can validate and pitch their ideas at the Cruise Hackathon in five Baltic Sea cities: Gdansk, Klaipeda, Riga, Stockholm and Tallinn. Application deadline is 13 March.

This spring is the fifth year for the international summer programme Network Globally, Act Locally (NGAL®), which also invites student teams to apply. Two teams from each participating university will be offered an opportunity to develop their ideas in an international setting, meet with mentors in Estonia and in the USA and at the end of the programme, take part in a pitching competition to win $3000. NGAL® is organised in cooperation with Tallinn University of Technology, College of Charleston, The Citadel and Nebraska Wesleyan University.

The Starter programme is funded by the European Social Fund, the E-Boat Accelerator programme is funded by EIT Health, and NGAL® is funded by Harry and Reba Huge Foundation.

Further information: Riin Lisett Rei, UT IdeaLab Marketing and Communications Manager, +372 5908 6451, riin.lisett.rei [ät] ut.ee

Category: Entrepreneurship
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

Retired U.S. Army Lieutenant General Ben Hodges to give lecture on contemporary security challenges in Europe

2 months 1 week ago
06.03.2019

On Thursday, 7 March, retired Lieutenant General Ben Hodges, former Commander of the U.S. Army in Europe, will give a lecture „The Contemporary Security Challenges Facing Europe” in the main building of University of Tartu.

Retired Lieutenant General Hodges will give the lecture as a part of the course "Power in International Politics" of the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies. Eoin Micheál McNamara, the lecturer in charge of the course, believes that Hodges, who only recently retired from active military service, offers valuable input for further strengthening the Estonian defence system and for making cooperation with NATO allies even stronger. “Hodges has been one of the main policy makers in NATO – he was the Commander of the U.S. Army in Europe from 2014 to 2017,” said McNamara.

Security issues concerning both Estonia and Europe will be addressed in the lecture and Hodges will elaborate on the current European security environment. He will focus on the ways NATO has adapted to the changed situation, for example whether and how NATO training or military cooperation and NATO presence in member states should be rethought or improved. The Baltic States and Eastern Europe will be in special spotlight.

Hodges is the former Commander of the U.S. Army in Europe and a strategic expert at The Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA). He recently joined the International Centre for Defence and Security (ICDS) as a Non-Resident Research Fellow. At ICDS, Hodges focuses on analysing the possibilities for strengthening military activities in NATO's eastern flank. In addition to holding several positions in Europe, Hodges has served in Iraq, Afghanistan and Korea. In 2015, Hodges was awarded the 2nd class Order of the Cross of the Eagle by the President of the Republic of Estonia.

UT will host the General Lieutenant in cooperation with the Baltic Defence College. The lecture will be held at 10:00–12:00 in room 140 of the main building of University of Tartu (Ülikooli 18).

Further information: Olga Bogdanova, UT Programme Director of the European Union and Russia Studies MA curriculum, 737 6375, olga.bogdanova [ät] ut.ee

Category: Continuing CoursesUniversityPress release
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

Business and management and education programmes at University of Tartu place high in international rankings

2 months 2 weeks ago
05.03.2019

16 subjects taught at University of Tartu have made it to the international university rankings published in late February. This year two new University of Tartu subjects have entered the rankings of consulting firm Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) – education ranked in the top 251–300 and business and management in the top 401–450.

In QS World University Rankings by subject, the highest ranking subject at University of Tartu (UT) was political sciences and international studies (101–150). Linguistics, philosophy, geography and agriculture and forestry follow, all ranking in the top 151–200.

According to the head of UT's Institute of Education Äli Leijen, their researchers cooperate with international partners, participating in numerous research and development projects that often lead to publishing well-cited high quality articles. Educational researchers at UT actively contribute to international research communities and hold leading positions in both professional organisations and editorial teams of scientific journals. Leijen noted that these activities might be the reason why the institute has received international recognition.

"The strategic advantage of the School of Economics and Business Administration is offering integrated studies. We hope to work together with computer scientists, mathematicians and statisticians to implement this vision in the future as well," head of the School Kadri Ukrainski explained.

For several years now, Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies has been prioritising increasing quality of studies and research through internationalisation. "It has been a long process and we are now beginning to reap the benefits," head of institute Mihkel Solvak says. "QS ratings really incorporate so-called academic reputation within disciplines. Our high ranking shows that the political sciences and international relations programmes at UT are highly valued. We can really offer international and highly competitive education."

Besides political sciences and international studies that have arisen to the top, biology has also improved in ranking (301–350 in 2018, 251–300 in 2019).

Other top subjects at UT include agriculture and forestry, geography, communication and media studies, linguistics, philosophy (151–200), law, modern languages, English language and literature (251–300), computer sciences, medicine (351–400), chemistry (451–500), physics and astronomy (551–600).

QS that comprises some of the most well-known international university rankings has also been ranking universities by subject (altogether 48 subjects) since 2011. The number of ranked universities per subject varies between 50 (e.g. dentistry, library management and veterinary) and 600 (e.g. chemistry, physics and computer sciences).

When ranking universities, QS considers reputation among researchers and employers as well as bibliometrics from the Scopus database. The percentual importance of the indicators vary across subjects – e.g. in arts and design only reputation is considered but in case of natural sciences with large publication volumes, bibliometrics matter more.

In 2019 students can apply for 27 English programmes, including two BA, one integrated and 24 MA programmes in University of Tartu. All info on English programmes is available on the UT website. Please turn to the admissions office for any follow-up questions.

Further information:
Äli Leijen, UT Head of the Institute of Education, +372 737 6441, ali.leijen [ät] ut.ee   
Kadri Ukrainski, UT Head of the School of Economics and Business Administration, +372 737 6360, kadri.ukrainski [ät] ut.ee
Mihkel Solvak, UT Head of Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies, 737 6372, mihkel.solvak [ät] ut.ee

Category: University
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)

The Academy of Security Sciences and the University of Tartu enter into a joint contract for construction of a study and accommodation building in Narva

2 months 2 weeks ago
01.03.2019

On Thursday, February 28, 2019, the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences and the University of Tartu signed a contract with the construction company Nordecon for the construction of a Narva Learning Center. Besides the cadets, also the staff of the Police and Border Guard Board, as well as the students of Narva College of the University of Tartu, will start using the study, training and accommodation building.  In addition, the construction will include a sports complex with a swimming pool, which is also open to the public.

The Narva Learning Center of the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences will be managed by the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences together with the Police and Border Guard Board and the University of Tartu. Accommodation facilities and shared lounges for cadets and officers of the Police and Border Guard Board, study classes and a shooting range have been planned for the building.

Toomas Asser, the Rector of the University of Tartu, confirmed that the university had waited several years for the construction of a new building in Narva.  “By establishing a new student home, we will further secure our presence in the border town. Of course, we will further develop the opportunities for studying at Narva College, so that more and more young people from Narva, and from elsewhere in Estonia and abroad will come here,” Asser said.

Gerd Müller, the chairman of the board of Nordecon AS who is going to build the complex, said the complex to be built is bound to be very interesting because, similarly to the new house of the Tallinn Academy of Security Sciences, the complex will accommodate parts of multiple different purposes. Müller is confident that the new study and accommodation building will be welcome both among the residents of Narva and the students and staff of the Academy and the College.

According to Katri Raig, the Minister of the Interior of the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences, the construction of the newly opened house in Tallinn and a new study building in Narva are one of the largest real estate investments in the country in the last few years. “The state values education and Ida-Viru County and Narva,” Raik emphasized. “The sports center and the eight-lane pool will also be open to the residents of the city. Completion of the building is scheduled for summer 2020, which will create a couple of dozens of new jobs and bring hundreds of cadets to practice and study each year. Thus, we will grow the Estonian statehood in Narva and make the city even more secure,” said the Minister.

The 11,952 m2 study and accommodation facility to be erected at Kerese Street will be completed in September 2020 and will cost EUR 15.4 million (excluding VAT). The construction is financed from the state budget and an investment of 3.7 million euros (excluding VAT) by the University of Tartu into the accommodation complex. The author of the architectural solution of the study complex is architectural firm Kolm Pluss Üks. Following their idea, they conglomerated all public and semi-public spaces on the ground floor and placed the accommodation facilities above the street level. The atrium passing through the entire building has been subdivided into activity and recreation areas at the ground level. The outside view is dominated by various open and closed stairs.

Signing the contract in Narva at Kerese Street 14 at the site of the future building  took place on Thursday,  February 28 at 3 pm Toomas Asser, Rector of Tartu University, Tarvo Kruup, East Prefect of the Police and Border Guard Board, Marek Link, Rector of the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences, Gerd Müller, Chairman of the Board of Nordecon, Katri Raik, Minister of Internal Affairs and Tarmo Tammiste, Mayor of Narva, were present.

Further information: Heiki Pagel, UT Estates Office Head of Unit, 737 5110, 503 2021, heiki.pagel [ät] ut.ee

Category: UniversityPress release
Sandra Sommer (sandraso)
Checked
19.05.2019 - 17:44
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