Forum Host

Competition, Collaboration & Complementarity in Higher Education

The Forum will be hosted by the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary

Central European University is a graduate institution of advanced research and teaching, dedicated to socially and morally responsible intellectual inquiry. CEU’s distinctive educational program builds on the research tradition of the great American universities; on the most valuable Central European intellectual traditions; on the international diversity of its faculty and students; on its commitment to social service; and on its own history of academic and policy achievements in transforming the closed communist inheritance.

CEU is committed to promoting the values of open society and self-reflective critical thinking. It aims at excellence in the mastery of established knowledge, courage to pursue the creation of new knowledge in the humanities, the social sciences, law and management, and engagement in promoting applications for each, in particular through their policy implications. CEU is a new model for international education, a center for study of contemporary economic, social and political challenges, and a source of support for building open and democratic societies that respect human rights and human dignity.

CEU is a unique institution in the heart of Europe: its 1,500 masters’ and doctoral students come from 117 countries, the university is accredited in Hungary and the United States. The University has earned global recognition for a variety of its academic programs—including political science, philosophy, and sociology—while continuing to invest in exciting new fields such as cognitive science and network science. Within the region, many of its programs enjoy premier status, including business and law.

From the beginning, CEU has tapped the best of U.S. academic tradition and regional intellectualism, resulting in today’s unique perspective, which make CEU particularly well equipped to explore the world’s diverse ethnic, racial, religious, cultural, historical, and philosophical dimensions.

CEU’s international faculty come from over 50 countries and hold degrees from world leading universities. Both renowned senior and talented young scholars are attracted to CEU scholarly standards, social mission, and the willingness to encourage intellectual risk and the pursuit of new knowledge. CEU has an exceptional student:teacher ratio of 7:1. Almost 200 permanent and 170 visiting professors and instructors help the students to benefit from a rich diversity of ideas, expertise and teaching styles. Professors are encouraged to spend half of their time on research activities, many of which are hosted in the university’s own research centers.

“In a world of polarization and division, a world where the status of facts is so deeply contested, the work of universities like ours in bringing men and women together around a shared respect for knowledge is more important than ever. We must remain dedicated to the task of teaching our students that knowledge is the only sure guide to moral choice and public policy. Universities like ours cannot retreat from the world. We must always be doing our part to help understand the problems our societies must solve if we are all to survive and prosper. We must never stop asking: what is incontestable in our understanding? How do we expand the continent of knowledge? If we truly care about knowledge, if we winnow the grain of knowledge from the chaff of ideology, partisanship, rhetoric and lies, we will be doing the university’s part to defend free and open societies. Hungarian poet Attila Jozsef was right: all of this is hard. But nothing is more important.”

CEU President and Rector Michael Ignatieff