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Ghent University

Department of Industrial Systems Engineering and Product Design

Belgium Full Member Institution

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Mission Statement

Ghent University is a pluralistic university open to all, regardless of ideological, political, cultural or social background. Our credo is ‘Dare to Think’.

Ghent University…

  • Distinguishes itself as a socially committed and pluralistic university that is open to all students, regardless of their ideological, political, cultural or social background;
  • Defines itself in a broad international perspective, all the while accentuating its individuality in terms of language and culture;
  • Aims to encourage its students to adopt a critical approach within a creative, development-oriented educational and research environment;
  • Offers a broad spectrum of high-quality research-based educational programmes that are constantly being adapted to the most recent scholarly and scientific developments;
  • Aims to develop in a selective manner the advanced degree programmes, as well as postgraduate and permanent education;
  • Aims to situate its educational and research activities within the broader social context and to remain in continual dialogue with all parties concerned;
  • Aims to promote and further develop fundamental independent research in all faculties and to be a world player in the selected fields of endeavour;
  • Aims to be an enterprising university with a focus on the social and economic applications of its research findings;
  • Attaches particular importance to the social facilities made available for students;
  • Creates a stimulating environment for its staff and provides them with the fullest scope of opportunities for developing their potential;
  • Attaches particular importance to the participation of students, staff and social representatives in the formulation of policy;
  • Desires strong interaction with its alumni;
  • Opts for a decentralised, dynamic organisation model.

International Role


International Cooperation

Integrated Policy Plan for Internationalisation


Ghent University first identified its priorities regarding Internationalisation in an Integrated Policy Plan for Internationalisation (IPPI) for the period 2014-2018. The IPPI 2019-2023 builds on this 1st policy plan and aims for Ghent University to take a leading role in Europe  as a university that excels internationally in education and research, where all members of the Ghent University community, regardless of their background, feel at home and where students are optimally prepared for the challenges of today's globalized society and labour market, across national borders.

Why make structural investments in internationalisation?

  • Internationalisation is a driving force for innovation
  • Internationalisation creates synergies, inside and outside the institution
  • Internationalisation leads to a higher quality of education, research and service to society
  • Internationalisation provides content to the social and global responsibility of Ghent University
  • Internationalisation strengthens the reputation of Ghent University

An institutional vision on internationalisation

For Ghent University, internationalisation offers important opportunities to tackle the challenges it is confronted with, both internally and externally, and to optimize the quality of its education, research and services to society. At the same time, Ghent University aims for a greater international visibility and competitiveness and for an impact on external policies (Flemish, Belgian and European) in the field of international cooperation. In the pursuit of these ambitions, other considerations need to be made, such as the possible limitations that may arise with regard to human rights when selecting partner institutions and how to reconcile these ambitions with a pioneering role regarding sustainability. To this end, a holistic and ethical framework is used in order to guide Ghent University’s internationalisation policy within the existing international context.

Ghent University applies a model of embedded internationalisation, in which internationalisation is inextricably linked to other university-wide policy visions and plans, and is embedded within the existing central and faculty structures. The implementation of the IPPI, for example, will greatly contribute to the achievement of the university-wide objectives.

In order to achieve the intended leadership role and to realize these ambitions, 12 priority areas have been defined within the IPPI 2019-2023, subdivided into 4 clusters:

Ghent University and the international context

  • Making effective strategic choices regarding qualitative partnerships
  • Strengthening the current operations regarding Regional Platforms, International Thematic Networks & Strategic Institutional Partnerships
  • Rolling out the pilot project "U4Society, an inclusive European University for all"
  • Expanding the Ghent University Global Campus in South Korea (GUGC)
  • Strengthening Ghent University's international image

Internationalisation as motor of broad innovation & social engagement

  • Strengthening the innovative role of internationalisation within Ghent University through monitoring and reporting
  • Collaborate with universities and research centres in the Global South

 Focus on quality of inflow and outflow of students, researchers & staff members

  • Expanding the offered opportunities for internationalisation experiences for students, researchers and staff members
  • Active talent recruitment
  • Improving welcoming and supervision services for international staff, researchers and students
  • International alumni policy


Internal Ghent University structure regarding internationalisation

  • Optimize the positioning, composition, responsibilities of the internationalisation structures, both at central and faculty level

Regional Platforms

    Global University Campus

    Alumni Abroad

    Vision and Policy 

    International Thematic Networks

    International students

    Each year more and more international students choose Ghent University for their study. More than 4150 foreign students, including exchange students, studied at Ghent University during academic year 2013-2014, 58% originating from EU countries; 42% from non-EU countries

    The top 5 of European countries of origin are the Netherland, Spain, Germany, Italy and Poland (owing to intensive Erasmus Exchange programmes and intake from Belgium's neighbouring countries). The non-EU countries are represented by a strong contingency from Asia: People's Republic of China, Iran, India and Vietnam. African students are predominantly from Ethiopia and Cameroon. Overseas students mainly come from Brasil, USA, Columbia, Ecuador and Mexico.


    FacultyTotal Studentsnon-Belgian students

    Arts and Philosophy51038%

    Law and Criminology38816%


    Medicine and Health Sciences70054%

    Engineering and Architecture479312%

    Economics and Business Administration56255%

    Veterinary Medicine

    Psychology and Educational Sciences45625%

    Bioscience Engineering

    Pharmaceutical Sciences10514%

    Political and Social Sciences22377%

    Total 41.87910%

    Receiving the bulk of foreign students are the faculties of Science, Engineering and Bioscience Engineering: their international courses, including the Erasmus Mundus joint programmes and the Development Cooperation course programmes, attract large numbers of international students.

    The high number of international students for the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine is due to intense 'border traffic': many Dutch and German students try to avoid their countries' numerus fixus in veterinary medicine studies.

    Not all international students are degree seeking students. More than 1.150 students stay at Ghent University in the framework of an exchange programme. Without doubt the Erasmus programme is the most popular of all.

    National Role

    Ghent University awards for Education, Research and Public Engagement

    A university has a threefold mission: education, research and public engagement. In each of these Ghent University strives for excellence.

    In order to reward and to stimulate not just this drive for quality but also the continuous dedication of our employees (professors, researchers, and administrative and technical staff), the university grants three unique awards:

    • education
    • research
    • public engagement & knowledge exchange

    With these annual awards Ghent University will honour staff members who distinguish themselves in one or more of the university’s cornerstones.

    Three awards for a three-fold mission

    Minerva award for Education

    Which ones of our staff members keep students on the edge of their seat with their well-structured and/or enthralling lectures? Which colleagues make an exceptional contribution to educational innovation, organization and/or curriculum development? Who excels in putting together international training programmes or in coaching and advising (doctoral) students?

    Prometheus award for Research

    Can you recommend academics who advance the international reputation of Ghent University’s research – by way of a huge innovative breakthrough or research results with an impressive impact or relevance; as inspiring team leader or as extraordinary supervisor of doctoral research?

    Hermes award for Public/scientific engagement & knowledge exchange

    Which staff members standing on the barricades for development cooperation? For valorising their research economically or socially? Others demonstrate educational and academic responsibility by making science accessible to a larger audience or by fuelling public debate and policy development; or perhaps they deserve recognition for engaging their former students through lively alumni relations.

    Main Focus

    On Bachelor's and Postgraduate levels:

    – Design history, theory and methodology

    – Visual Communicaiton Design

    – Design Education

    – Co-creation, participatoty design

    Faculties and Departments

    Ghent University is a top 100 university and one of the major universities in Belgium. Our 11 faculties offer a wide range of courses and conduct in-depth research within a wide range of scientific domains. We are also the first European university in the Songdo Global University Campus in South Korea.


    Bachelor Level Programs

    Bachelor's Programmes


    Dutch programmes

    Campus Kortrijk

    Master Level Programs

    English programmes

    Dutch programmes

    Campus Kortrijk

    Dutch programmes

    Subject Areas for Exchange Students

    Ghent University's 11 faculties are composed of 79 faculty departments. These departments offer high-quality courses in every one of their scientific disciplines, each inspired by innovative research.

    In addition to these faculties, Ghent University has five Doctoral Schools just for doctoral researchers. These schools provide support to doctoral students through specialized courses as well transferable skills training, they contribute to a quality culture in research, and take care of the social and international visibility of the doctoral degree.

    Application Deadlines


    For study exchange the nominations deadlines are set to 15 April (1st semester) and 15 October (2nd semester). The application deadlines are set to 15 May (1st semester) and 15 November (2nd semester). 


    Exchange application

    The exchange application consists of two steps

    • As a first step you need to create a Ghent University account and register via the Oasis website
    • Next step is to select the correct academic year of your exchange and click on the link ‘Exchange’ under ‘Curriculum’.



    International Support Team
    Het Pand, Onderbergen 1, 9000 Gent
    Main entrance, 2nd floor, room 120.008
    from 09:00-12:00 and from 14:00-16:00
    [email protected]

    Teaching Languages

    Dutch (and English)

    Semester Dates

    Semester A (Fall): late September – to mid December (teaching)

    Semester B (Spring): beginning February – end of May (teaching)

    Cost of Living Per Month (Studying and Living)



    Bachelor: 45,979(all)
    Doctorate: 4,500

    Exchange Students

    Incoming: 4,150
    Outgoing: 2,052

    Teaching Staff

    Professors: 9,000
    Lectures: 6,000

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