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ASU engages Ireland for debate on higher ed's future

June 09, 2010

Arizona State University is headed to Ireland to help the country define a new era for higher education.

ASU and Dublin City University will co-host a joint conference “Re-Inventing the University: Creating a New Vision” on June 15-16, in Dublin, Ireland.

The conference will explore higher education in Ireland and two major interlinked themes for the future: interdisciplinarity and social embeddedness. In addition to academic experts from both universities, leading policymakers in Ireland also will engage in the discussion.

ASU President Michael Crow, who has established several major interdisciplinary research initiatives at the university and more than a dozen new interdisciplinary schools since 2002, will be a featured keynote speaker.

“There is a compelling argument that the traditional disciplinary boundaries, which have compartmentalized knowledge generation for hundreds of years, are now providing diminishing returns,” Crow said. “Universities must take a problem-solving approach that requires faculty to move beyond their conventional borders and think and innovate in new and exciting ways.”

Businesses, local and regional communities are also playing an increasingly important role for universities and they expect a commitment from “their” university to social and economic development, Crow said.

Dublin City University is a young university with extensive teaching and research facilities in business, science, electronics, computer technology, communications and languages, serving as a change agent in its local community. Its degree programs were also the first to be interdisciplinary in the Irish education   system. For more information on Dublin City University, visit

Additional information about the conference is online at:

Kathryn Mohrman,
Director of University Design Consortium, School of Public Programs