ATHENA European University alliance continues to thrive as a beacon of collaboration and innovation, uniting over 160,000 students and more than 17,500 staff members across nine EU countries, including five Widening countries and one Ukrainian university. Our diversity mirrors the richness of the European Higher Education landscape, allowing us to bring global knowledge to local use and foster regional competitiveness and growth. Capitalizing on the strengths of our diverse members, we aim to address the technological gap between Europe and its global competitors, promote inclusive growth, and advocate for socially responsible technological developments.

“At ATHENA, our mission is to transform our universities into connecting spaces, where the arts, social sciences, and humanities interplay with the natural and engineering sciences across all partner institutions.”

Through this interdisciplinary approach, we advance technological developments in thematically-centered and challenge-oriented areas while assessing their wider transformative effects. We are committed to fostering a European spirit, reinforced by common educational and exchange programs, nurturing the next generation of European creators.

ATHENA is an alliance of ten members (Hellenic Mediterranean University, Igor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin, Polytechnic Institute of Porto, University of Maribor, University of Orléans, University of Salento, University of Siegen, University of Vigo, and Vilnius Gediminas Technical University) and two HEIs as associated partners: Carinthia University of Applied Sciences and Lviv Polytechnic National University. 

In January 2024, the rectors of the ten member universities signed a joint Mission Statement for ATHENA’s next phase.

Addressing European Needs

ATHENA is dedicated to bringing cutting-edge knowledge, technology, research, and innovation to our regions and students, ensuring equal access for all European regions, whether widening or non-widening. 

Recognizing the growing technology-driven gaps in European societies, we adopt a distinctive approach that integrates perspectives from the social sciences and humanities. Our comprehensive approach considers the broader consequences of implementing technological advancements, advocating for a collaborative approach that reflects on societal values and long-term impacts.

Contributing to European Priorities

As a European University with a vast geographical coverage, including both widening and non-widening countries, ATHENA is ideally positioned to address pressing European needs. We contribute directly to:

  • Making the green and digital transitions fair and inclusive to shape sustainable and resilient societies and economies.
  • Equipping citizens with the necessary knowledge and skills for the future.
  • Developing policy frameworks that bridge the digital divide and integrate environmental sustainability with social and economic considerations.
  • Addressing emerging skills needs and fostering cooperation between universities and industrial/non-governmental partners.

Aligning with Regional Strategies

ATHENA tailors its activities to align with regional needs outlined in the Smart Specialization Strategies of the relevant regions. Our initiatives focus on ICT, energy efficiency, sustainable manufacturing, healthy society, and nutrition’s contribution to health – areas directly contributing to the 2021-2027 smart specialization strategies of our regions.

As we embark on the new chapter of 2024, ATHENA remains steadfast in its commitment to excellence, collaboration, and innovation, shaping the future of European higher education for generations to come.