Anders Söderholm has been the Vice-Chancellor of Mid Sweden University since 2008 – that is seven out of the first ten years. Here, he talks about his view on the future development of the university and emphasizes among other things the ability to attract collaboration partners and external research funding as reasons for Mid Sweden University’s success
– My belief is that the university landscape will be characterized by both an increased internationalization and brand profiling in the upcoming 10-20 years. My ambition is therefore to continue to build successful and strong environments for both research and education within a number of areas where we can make especially important contributions to the development of the surrounding world. It is not just about making certain excellent research environments grow, but also to create additional research resources for fields like the professional education and training, fields that are important for our welfare and society. To deal with this double task may be our greatest long-term challenge.
What will influence the development of Mid Sweden University?
– Our ability to attract talents among our students and employees, the ability of our employees to be active in the international scientific discussion and to attract collaboration and external research funding are some of the keys to success that are important already today. In the long run, the ambitions of our government are obviously crucial and an important factor here is the way in which we are able to position ourselves in relation to the national political goals.
Which position will Mid Sweden University have in the Mid-Sweden region in the future?
– The university will continue to be important for the competence maintenance in all the fields that are important in our region. We are also a ”gate” to the region for people from the entire country, and to a certain level internationally, for those who wish to study our special fields. To a great extent, our research is also relevant for the long-term ability of the region to renew and develop.
Which role will Mid Sweden University have in the future Swedish higher education landscape?
– Hopefully, the politicians will clarify the national demand for different types of university colleges and universities. In that discussion, Mid Sweden University will be able to stand as an example both in terms of new ways to educate and for well-developed ways to collaborate on research. We will simply be best in class and a role model for the modern university – a seat of learning that is important for the entire country.