The Black Sea University Foundation is a non-governmental and non-profit regional organization, with primary goals of promoting, clarifying and studying the economies, societies, education systems and governance of the Black Sea region – its position with the rest of the world and also the development of new ways of enhancing the interest of the region at an international level.
The purpose of the Black Sea University Foundation is constituted of:
In the sense of the objectives that we settled, The Black Sea University Foundation undertakes the following activities:
- Fundamental scientific research and applicable, offering priorities to the following domains: international relations and conflict prevention, educative science and information technology, prospective research, sustainable development, economic studies and management, international projects management, ecology and sea resources, cultural policies and global problems, alternative and unpolluted energy resources, development of food production and other non-agricultural activities including the traditional character, in the Black Sea area;
- Activities of documentation in the domains listed above and also the creation of new centers for a stable activity: representations and centers, regional biros, laboratories and training units, working groups with a focused theme, teams, specialized commissions, in the country and abroad, under the law;
- Developing human resources and social capital through activities of training and education: training courses, skill enhancement, specialization, graduate or intensive courses, as required by law;
- Activities of reflecting and debating at a professional level, expertise or by disseminating information through conferences, round tables, symposiums, national and international seminaries on social problems and developmental problems that are found frequently in the Black Sea region in an European and global context, starting with the problem of peace and European organizing;
- Organizing personal programs of action, and also partnerships with public institutions and components of civil societies;
- Organizing advertising campaigns and informing about BSUF purposes;
Organizing courses, studies and periodical publications connected with the BSUF purposes;
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE BLACK SEA UNIVERSITY FOUNDATION
In 1992, when the Economic Organization Cooperation of the Black Sea, including 11 countries: 6 riverine to the Black Sea (Bulgaria, Turkey, Georgia, The Russian Federation, Ukraine and Romania) and 5 neighboring countries (Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan Greece, and Albania) was founded, a group of Romanian academics coordinated by the Academic and diplomat Mircea Malita had the initiative of creating the Black Sea University Foundation, non-governmental and non-profit organization.
SCIENTIFIC ACTIVITY AND RESEARCH
The experience acquired in 1991 and 1992 by its founders, before the organizing of five European summer schools with the help and collaboration with the European College from Bruges, contributed to the consolidation of the Foundations’ formation and also to the development of education.
An estimated of 30 international courses were organized annually until 2001 and 10 workshops and symposiums per year over the last decade. In the course of these events took part 6000 participants from 40 countries.
The topics of the courses included five major domains: „Management and Economy”, “International relations and conflict prevention”, “Advanced science and applications”, “Culture and Contemporary Problems”. The quality of the scientific reunions and the courses held is reflected in the materials published: “Artificial Life – Grammar Models” and “The Black Sea and Danube Delta System in the Global Changes Impact”, but also exploring subjects regarding advanced sciences such as: “Chaitin Complexity” which was honored by the presence of its initiator (Gregory Chiatin)- its materials being distributed on the Internet and CDs; “Molecular Computing” organized by The Research Institute of Mathematics of the Romanian Academy; “Bioelectronics”, held by the Nobel laureate – Ivar Giavaer (SUA). A special attention was given to events dedicated to European issues, where the Black Sea University Foundation was supported by the European Studies from Luxembourg and the European Council.
Each course of The Black Sea University Foundation was created for 30-50 participants and for 6-10 invited lectors, lasting about one or two weeks. In a period of five months, the Foundation organized each month, starting from May to October, three to four parallel courses, reaching an estimated of 30-40 courses. The themes were established jointly by a Romanian University and a partner university from another country, each contributing with three, up to five lectors. At the end of the courses participation certifications were given to those who meet the qualification requirements.
The foundation is qualified to apply new educational methods for adults based on anticipation, participation, applications, concentration and interaction. Courses, usually consisted of two lectors and daily seminars lasting three hours each are supplemented with demonstrations, applications and discussions referring to diverse cases. Foreign languages at the course are usually English and French.
Beyond the borders of Europe, The Black Sea University Foundation engaged in a close cooperation with Tokay University in Japan, for a course “Comparative Studies in management” and “A Round Table for Subcultures, constitution of nations and forms of government: the case of Europe’s central countries” (1994). Twenty Japanese students took part in these activities due to intense promotion of the Foundation’s program by Professor Rei Shiratori, Director of the Research Institute in Social Sciences, University Tokay, Tokyo, which is also a member of the International Scientific Council of the Black Sea.
Since 1997, The Black Sea University Foundation offered facilitates and experience to new research groups and other educational organizations, becoming a service provider and a common platform for regional projects and international and institutions. For example, an organized symposium organized in the same year in Mangalia, with the help of Swiss institutions, represented a defining moment in applying these ideas. The works of this symposium, held in the presence of the General Secretary of the Economic Cooperation Organization of the Black Sea, were published in English in a special edition of the Romanian Journal of International Affairs entitled “Conflicts at the Black Sea”.
In 1999, The Black Sea University Foundation was granted a special consultative status at the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. Due to this status in UN, BSUF organized in Bucharest in 2003, with the help of the Romanian Foreign Ministry, the reunion of the NGOs in 15 states from Eastern Europe which obtained the same status. At the end of the conference, BSUF was chosen to be coordinator for the NGOs activities for the next two years
In December 2001, in cooperation with the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, organized a symposium regarding “The New Generation of Conflicts in the XXI Century”. The series of occasional papers was initiated by the study of Professor Radovan Vukadinovic (Croatia).
Taking into account its status in the European Council, BSUF is active in the study and presentation of European themes. In 2004, with a participation of Italian and French delegations and in collaboration with Titulescu Foundation, the scientific reunion called “Humanity at the hour of Major Processes: Globalization and Regionalization”. Also, in 2004, the annual series of Summer Schools (the eight) organized at the Institute for European and International Studies in Luxemburg.
As a regional point, I.I.O. situated in Constanta, took part in numerous scientific seminars dedicated to the study of the Black Sea in presence of the Council of I.I.O. from Malta. Through this activity, possible collaborations with scientists from the Caspian See appeared, current objective of BSUF.
In addition to courses and seminars, BSUF organized a series of scientific reunions and political under the formation of conferences, symposiums and round tables directed toward research and project themes. These are just some examples of these types of events:
- Round Table of the World Academy of Arts and Sciences (President Harlan Cleveland) which took place in Mangalia in 1994, event preceding the General Reunion in Minneapolis.
- Regional Summer School- focused: “Selected themes in Finance- 1994” (in cooperation with the World Bank Institute)
- Club of Rome Symposium about “How to manage the global wave: avoiding crisis and wars-1999” (in cooperation with other NGOs). These aspects were published in a special edition of the quarterly publication Millenium III.
- Workshop between universities about “The Improvement of International Relations Programs- 2001” (with the help of the German Rector’s Conference, US Institute for Peace- USIP, UPAZ and CEPIS- UNESCO).
- The Federation for Future Global Studies, General Conference- Brasov, September 2001.
- Mitrany Evening. Debate in collaboration with the Institute for European and International Studies from Luxemburg, 14 August 2002.
- Unconventional Energies Symposium with the Polytechnics University from Montreal, Mangalia, September 2002.
- Epistemology Symposium, together with the Philosophy Institute of the Romanian Academy, 2004.
- Authority and Pluralism, in collaboration with the International Insitute Goethe, Bucharest 2003.
- Energy Resources of the Black Sea, in collaboration with “Dimitrie Cantemir University” from Constanta, 2007, etc.
BSUF had the initiative of creating the Network of the Black Sea Universities as a result of its gained experience with the Baltic University (Uppsala) and the Mediterranean University (Roma).
After the Constitutive Conference organized in collaboration with Ovidius University from Constanta (whose rector became the first president of the network), The Network of the Black Sea Universities was created. In present, NBSU has more than 100 universities. The Turkish President had organized a NBSU conference in Istanbul (2000) and the next Azerbaijani president, had organized the conference in Baku (2002).
In present, NBSU created a consortium of universities for the study of conflict prevention by CPSC of BSUF and by the Centre of Informational Technology Studies in Education coordinated by LITE.
The collaboration between the 100 universities was official, becoming constant partners in addressing the two aspects.
The Black Sea University Network was supported with enthusiasm by regional organizations. E.g. The Economic Cooperation Organization of the Black Sea (ECOBS) and The Parliamentary Economic Cooperation at the Black Sea (PECBS, and also CEPES-UNESCO).
For more details, please refer to the annual activity reports.