Celebrating 20 Years of Erasmus Mundus with emPLANT+ - emPLANT+ Master

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27 May

This year marks the 20th anniversary of Erasmus Mundus, a milestone worth celebrating.


In honor of this occasion, let’s take a journey back to the inception of emPLANT+ and trace its evolution.

It all began with the European Plant Breeding College (EPBC), which commenced on September 1, 2015, and concluded on August 31, 2017. The primary objective of EPBC was to foster knowledge exchange in plant breeding among five prestigious institutions. This initiative, funded by the European Union under the Erasmus+ program, aimed to enrich plant breeding curricula and enhance student employability. Institut Polytechnique UniLaSalle (France) spearheaded the program, with partners including Ege University Türkiye (Turkey), Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet (Sweden), Universitat Politecnica de Valencia (Spain), and Universiteit Gent (Belgium).


Although not an Erasmus Mundus program, EPBC laid the groundwork for the subsequent emPLANT program (2017-2022). Comprising five universities from different countries, namely UniLaSalle Polytechnic Institute (France), University of Helsinki (Finland), Universitat Politècnica de València (Spain), Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (Sweden), and Ege University (Turkey), emPLANT successfully trained three cohorts of students, culminating in 2022.


Building upon the achievements of emPLANT, emPLANT+ emerged as its successor. Launched in 2020 and continuing until 2026, emPLANT+ is a collaborative effort among six European universities: UniLaSalle Polytechnic Institute (France), Hungarian University of Agriculture and Life Sciences – MATE (Hungary), Universitat Politècnica de València (Spain), Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (Sweden), University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences – BOKU (Austria), and University of Milano (Italy).


The emPLANT+ program aims to equip aspiring plant breeders with comprehensive training in science, management, law, languages, and soft skills essential for the seed industry and research institutes. By leveraging the diverse expertise and resources of its consortium members, emPLANT+ offers a unique learning experience unmatched elsewhere.


Over the years, these programs have welcomed students from across the globe, with more than 60 participants in emPLANT and over 70 in emPLANT+. Feedback from alumni like Varsha Lingaraj Moji underscores the programs’ impact on students’ academic and professional growth.


We believe that our master’s degree is essential because in less than 15 years the world population is expected to rise to 9 billion people and agricultural production will need to increase by 70% to secure food supplied (FAO). That is why, at the global level, the Plant Breeding sector needs specialists with a high degree of training who know and are able to combine and apply the methodologies derived from conventional techniques with those of the new biotechnologies (molecular markers, In vitro cultivation, genetic transformation, etc.) for the development of new varieties.


Stay tune for other information and news about emPLANT+!


Last updated : May 17, 2024