A Breakthrough Meeting in Cadiz

The MPDC Meeting in Cadiz (15-16 June) was very ably organised by Candela Contero Urgal and her team at UCA. With us being hosted at UCA’s El Olivillo – Centro de Transferencia building, the stage was set for a real ‘transformation’ of the TURQUOOOISE proposal.

Turquoooise Academics hard at work collaborating on learning outcomes

Many of the missing pieces of the jigsaw puzzle have now started falling into place. TURQUOOOISE has transitioned from an aspirational joint degree into one that is increasingly looking doable and attractive to our potential students.

The representatives of the six universities engaged in this project know each other well enough to be able to build on each other’s strengths and resources.

The end product is a set of interlocking micro-credentials, almost all of equal ECTS value, that build on the two columns – of management and sustainability –  of the master’s programme.

The course has been set for our students who will set sail to complete the different programme learning outcomes (PLOs) over the various semesters.

Partners aim to develop competent but inquisitive graduates, eager for a change that is green but inspired by the uniquely blue/coastal urban reality that the SEA-EU Alliance brings to the table.

Master Programme Development Committee of TURQUOOOISE meets in Malta – 2nd & 3rd March 2023

Having started last November, the Turquoooise Project is well underway and progressing. Each university has now held focus groups with a wide range of stakeholders to identify the skills needed by future Turquoooise managers, to better cope with and lead the transition towards more sustainable management.  

Eighteen academics from the University of Cadiz (Spain), the University of Western Brittany (Brest, France), the University of Malta, the University of Gdansk (Poland), the University of Split (Croatia) & Nord University (Bodo, Norway), met in Malta over 2 and 3 March to compare their findings and transform the skills into learning outcomes. This exercise will serve as the basis of the future programme structure for the new master’s programme.

The Malta meeting has been kindly hosted by Farsons, Malta’s oldest and largest locally-owned manufacturing concern, which brews beer as its core activity, but has expanded into soft drink manufacture, food services and importation. The company, soon to celebrate 100 years of operation, has a longstanding collaboration with the University of Malta, supporting research, particularly in industrial heritage. With its cutting-edge human resource management practices and drive towards sustainability, Farsons has been especially receptive and enthusiastic about the TURQUOOOISE endeavour. This was confirmed by Ms Antoinette Caruana, the HR Manager of the Farsons Group who kindly opened the meeting and addressed the participants on the first day.

Joint design is a key element in making this initiative a truly European Joint Master and these two days have been a perfect opportunity for academics to work together, debate and confront their views in a multicultural environment

Listening to our  Stakeholders: Six Focus Groups, Six Countries, One list of skills

Representatives from each of the six universities engaged in the Turquoooise joint master’s degree initiative, Cadiz, Malta, Brest, Gdansk, Split and Nord, organised one or more focus groups with their respective stakeholders in order to co-construct a list of skills and competencies needed by the future Turquoooise manager. 

The programme aims to help transition and transform businesses into co-creators of change, reconnecting business with nature 

These meetings are a key feature of the Turquoooise adventure. They proved invaluable in getting together a range of stakeholders – public officers, captains of industry, NGO activists, current and past students – involved from the outset in crafting how to equip a manager committed and versed in sustainability.  

This new Master degree seeks to use green and blue know-how and knowledge to impart managers and leaders with the necessary knowledge, skills and techniques to propel change and transition and transform businesses into co-creators of a new normal, that is kind to people, profit and planet.  – Such a programme of studies has to find a willing and receptive audience inside the companies and organisations in our respective eco-systems. 

This is why, from the very start, it was our plan to build the master’s programme inductively, from the ground up, listening to the needs and concerns of organisations while using our academic backgrounds to question the status quo.  

Each university’s list of skills was compiled and then combined in order to generate a truly pan-European list of skills and competencies for our imminent Master degree . This rich database was the basis for stimulating conversations that have now started to build topics, themes and eventually study units, fleshing out the curriculum and methods of assessment and delivery of the new programme of studies  

The TURQUOOOISE team meets alongside SEA-EU colleagues to discuss accreditation routes for their first and new joint Master programme

On January 19th, academics and technical staff from the universities of Western Brittany (France), Kiel (Germany), Gdansk (Poland), Split (Croatia), Malta (Malta) and Nord (Norway) met virtually to debate and discuss the accreditation process options for the new joint master’s study programme they are currently designing.

The meeting was a crucial step to better understand the legal frameworks around accreditation in each of the participating countries as well as identify the best route forward for the accreditation of the future master programme.

As the TURQUOOOISE Master has been chosen as a pilot for all future joint programmes to be designed by the SEA-EU alliance, the partners all agreed on the necessity to go through the European Approach in line with the European Commission recommendations for European Universities.

TURQUOOOISE Team Zoom – to find accreditation solutions!

Erasmus Mundus Design Measures
Kick-Off Meeting – 17 & 18 November – Brest

It was at the start of November that things officially started for TURQUOOOISE: the SEA-EU Master pilot project and to properly launch, the Academic and Admin teams met in Brest for the official Kick-Off Meeting on the 17th and 18th of November 2022.

Indeed, after getting the fabulous news in August 2022 that the application for Erasmus Mundus Design Measures (EMDM) funding was successful, getting an incredible score of 97/100, the Kick-off Meeting was planned. The event, co-led by Malta and Brest, was intense with two full days of meetings with a meaty agenda.

The inspiration for the micro-credential structure
– the “croquembouche”
Team event – crêpe making

The team were delighted to have representatives from all universities represented in the proposal, but even more pleased to be joined by Nord University and Kiel University, with a view to perhaps joining Team TURQUOOOISE.

The discussions were fruitful and wide-ranging, with much talk of deliverables and strategies, but also broader talk, speaking to academic content & stakeholder meetings, the structure of the future degree, as well as accreditation mechanisms, were also on the table.

The degree aims to base the concept of the TURQUOOOISE manager on competencies co-defined with stakeholders during the first period of this 15-Month Project. Collaboration with stakeholders will ensure that the skills of TURQUOOOISE graduates are applicable to real-world situations, whilst remaining innovative and agile in finding solutions for organisations and for the planet.

The Academic and Admin team working on the project also had some time to build their team spirit during the crêpe-making workshop on Thursday 17th November in the Evening, as well as over lunches, even enjoying a “croquembouche”, the dessert inspiration behind the innovative micro-credential structure of the degree.

Team TURQUOOOISE have a lot to accomplish over the next 15 months to get the Master degree into the real world, but the Kick-Off Meeting was a confident start allowing us to embark on the rest of the journey with vim and vigour! Vive Team TURQUOOOISE!