Hungarian Partnerships

For CEU, partnerships with other universities are an essential part of our open society mission. CEU partners with institutions and universities across the globe, offering opportunities for our students, faculty and researchers to benefit from and contribute to the development of new knowledge in a wide variety of fields. Partnerships with Hungarian institutions are of particular importance to CEU, which has called Budapest home for more than two decades. Below please find more information on our department's partnerships with Hungarian institutions.

MASTERS PROGRAMS IN ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE AND POLICY – The Department is hosting the highly acclaimed two-year Erasmus Mundus Masters program in Environmental Sciences, Policy and Management (MESPOM), offered in collaboration with Lund University, the University of Manchester, the University of the Aegean, the Middlebury Institute of International Studies and the University of Saskatchewan.

CEU also offers a one-year Master of Sciences in Environmental Sciences and Policy. Both programs offer an interdisciplinary and applied perspective and are attended by a global student body of ca. 30/year.

The Department also has a PhD program with an intake of around 6 new PhD students / year. Many PhD and Masters theses cover topics with relevance for Hungary ranging from the energy policy, climate change mitigation and adaptation, green transport, natural resources management and conservation, urban development and environmental advocacy.

The programs are unique in Hungary and Europe for their combination of international and interdisciplinary outlook, applied perspective, frequent involvement of international partners, fieldwork and primary data collection overseas, and close supervision.

SUMMER UNIVERSITIES – Several summer universities are offered through CEU’s Summer University program in partnership with international partners. Recent examples include the Innovations in Disaster Risk Reduction with UNDP; Geospatial Technologies for Sustainable Water Management with the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs and the EU Joint Research Centre; The Precautionary Principle: Governance of Innovation and Innovation in Governance with the European Environment Agency; and Green Industry: Pathways Towards Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development with UNIDO.

APPLIED POLICY RESEARCH AND SUPPORT – Faculty are regularly involved in international policy processes of multilateral organizations. Prof. Laszlo Pinter participated in the negotiations of the sustainable development goals (SDGs), representing the science perspective and lead a 14-country project of the Asia-Europe Foundation to develop and pilot test a goal selection approach. Prof. Aleh Cherp is co-chair of a group of the International Standards Organization on greenhouse gas standards and Panel Chair, Social Sciences and Humanities for Environment and Space at the European Research Council.

Prof. Tamara Steger was a lead researcher/author on the Assessment of the 6th Environmental Action Programme, and scientist on EU projects including CHANGING BEHAVIOR (7th Framework) and Environmental Policy Integration (6th Framework).

CONTRIBUTIONS TO KEY GLOBAL AND EUROPEAN SCIENCE ASSESSMENTS – Department staff regularly contribute to major international environmental and sector assessments. As a nominee of the Government of Hungary, Prof. Diana Ürge-Vorsatz is presently Vice Chair of Working Group III of the IPCC. Along with Prof. Aleh Cherp, she also served as a coordinating lead author of the Global Energy Assessment.

Prof. László Pintér recently served as coordinating lead author of the future scenarios segment of the flagship publication of the UN Environment Program on the state and directions of the global environment, GEO-5, and was also coordinating lead author of the European GEO-6 report.

MAJOR RESEARCH PROJECTS – The department has a well-established track record of involvement in major research projects funded through the EU and other international donors, in collaboration with leading foreign universities. Recent projects include the 7th Framework Program-funded IMPRESSIONS project assessing the effects of extreme climate change, with Veszprém and Szekszárd as two Hungarian case studies; the ARTS project that that looked at the status and potential to accelerate Budapest’s green transition; the Horizon 2020-funded NATURVATION project on the potential of nature based solutions to transform cities, with Győr as a Hungarian case study; and the COMBI project on multiple benefits of energy efficiency in Europe.

INTERNATIONAL NETWORKS – Faculty play key roles in high-quality networks that often involve brining key international experts to Hungary. Prof. Viktor Lagutov in a key partner in the Eye on Earth consortium lead by the Abu Dhabi Global Environmental Data Initiative and UNEP and chair of the Eye on Environmental Education Special Initiative; Prof. Pinter is Steering Committee member of the Balaton Group dedicated to the systems based analysis of global environment and development problems. All faculty members are individually involved in many international science associations.

COLLABORATION WITH HUNGARIAN ORGANIZATIONS – The Department maintains close collaboration with, participates in and often hosts events of a wide range of Hungarian scientific and advocacy organizations, including but not limited to various committees of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences; the Antall József Knowledge Center; the National University of Public Service; the Regional Environmental Centre for Central and Eastern Europe; the Alliance of Climate Friendly Municipalities; the Hungarian Urbanism Society and others.

COLLABORATION WITH BUSINESS – The department maintains an active relationship with the private sector in Hungary and abroad. Faculty sit on advisory boards of major companies (e.g., Prof. Ürge-Vorsatz sits on the advisory board of German energy utility RWE); companies are represented in departmental projects (e.g., Audi Hungária Zrt. and Rába Járműipari Holding Zrt. are involved in the NATURVATION project); thesis projects often deal with issues of interest for business (e.g. Pannonia Ethanol); and companies contribute to departmental programs (e.g. Google contributing to Summer Universities).

The faculty includes several Hungarian members of international renown. With a PhD from the University of Berkeley in the United States, Prof. Diana Ürge-Vorsatz is a globally and nationally recognized authority on climate change mitigation and energy efficiency. Besides her regular IPCC work she is a anel member of the European Research Council; member of a high-level review panel of the EU’s Joint Research Center; Chair of the Jury of the Energy Globe Award of Hungary and others.

Prof. Ürge-Vorsatz serves as the Director of the Department’s Center for Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Policy (3CSEP) since 2007.

Prof. László Pintér is an expert on sustainable development, indicators of progress and sustainable development strategies. He worked on these for over 15 years at the International Institute for Sustainable Development in Canada as Program Director before joining CEU in 2010. With a strong focus on policy and practice, he leads several multi-year projects on climate change adaptation and urban ransformation. He has an over two-decade track record of collaboration with major multilateral organizations like various UN agencies and the OECD, multilateral development banks such as the World Bank, the China Council, major foundations, various governments and the private sector. He holds a PhD from the University of Minnesota.

Prof. Zoltán Illés is a former Secretary of State for Environmental Protection, Nature Conservation and Water Management. Currently on sabbatical at Indiana University, he is an expert on public policy and pollution control. He has a PhD in analytical chemistry and has a long track record of serving in a series of senior advisory positions with organizations such as the World Bank, the Ambassador of the European Union to Hungary and others.

Cooperation Agreements: Regional Environmental Center (REC) - Memorandum of Understanding (currently under negoatiation) - joint projects, internships, consultation, capacity building