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SmartAL Partners

SmartAL Partners


CIHEAM1Centre International de Hautes Etudes Agronomiques Méditerranéennes – Insitut Agronomique Méditerranéen de Montpellier

CIHEAM is an Intergovernmental Organization with a General Secretariat based in Paris and 4 Mediterranean Agronomic Institutes (MAI) located in Italy (Bari), Greece (Chania), France (Montpellier) and Spain (Zaragoza). The CIHEAM is currently involved in 90 transnational projects, representing a total financing of approximately 110 million Euros, mobilizing nearly 50 countries, involving a total of more than 600 different organizations and research centers.
From its creation in 1962, CIHEAM-IAM Montpellier (CIHEAM-IAMM has trained more than 4,000 students and professional trainees (average 200 Master & PhD students per year). The Institute’s researchers collaborate through networks to numerous projects of training, research and cooperation. Their fields of expertise cover the Mediterranean Basin and are particularly related to agricultural policies, rural and territorial development, food systems and the organization of value chains, resource management and agro-environment. CIHEAM-IAMM is a member of Agropolis international, a network of 2700 research scientists and lecturers in the fields of agriculture, food, biodiversity and environment (
Through its institutional activity, CIHEAM-IAMM strengthens cooperation within Mediterranean and European countries, building and coordinating research and cooperation programs, with European, regional and national tools (former FP6 and FP7 and now H2020, InterRegMed & Europe,etc.). Since 2005, CIHEAM-IAMM holds the Erasmus Charter, organises international students and staff mobilities and is a partner of the Master Erasmus Mundus ( For more than 10 years, CIHEAM-IAMM collaborated with UBT, UET, local governments and Albanian Ministries of Agriculture and Environment to implement various projects in Albania (eg. a Tempus project on natural ressources management, a thematical network of experts on Mediterranean pastoralism, BioDivBalkans). CIHEAM- IAMM has a large experience on local development and territory administration of rural areas as well. The institution has plaid a key role on leading researchers on the local development among Mediterranean countries.

University of Korça “Fan S Noli”

he University of Korça (UNKO) was created in 1992, on the basis of the Higher Agricultural Institute of Korça (1971-1992). It is located in one economically dynamic region of Albania. It is composed of three faculties: Agriculture, Education and Philology, Economy and Natural and Human Sciences. The University of Korça offers study courses in the fields of agriculture, economics, teaching and medicine.

The University of Korça has approximately 7500 students coming from all regions of Albania.
The academic staff consists of 140 full-time lecturers, professors and assistants. The majority of the academic staff are young people, who have attended post-university qualifications in Albania and abroad. 68 employees assist and facilitate the work of the above academic staff in the administration, laboratories and research centers of the university.
The Faculty of Agriculture currently offers a Professional Master in "Sustainable rural development" with about 50 students and will open a new one on territorial management in 2017 to meet the challenge of the decentralization process. UNKO also offers third-level studies (PhD) in Sustainable Horticulture.
The Bologna Declaration principles are already integrated in UNKO’s daily teaching programs, already integrating this way UNKO in the European Space of Higher Education. UNKO participated in various Tempus, ERASMUS projects covering topics such as curriculum development through regional cooperation, improvement of teaching quality, curriculum reform and has as well a great experience in Cross Boarded (IPA) projects. UNKO already experienced academic mobility through students, staff and researchers exchange within the framework of BASILEUS I, II, III, IV, V.

Uni Hohenheim Logo Blau ENUniversität Hohenheim

Founded in 1818, the German University of Hohenheim ( was traditionally specialized in agricultural and natural sciences. Today, however, the majority of its students are enrolled in one of the many study programs offered by the faculty of business, economic and social sciences. The university maintains worldwide academic alliances with nearly 100 research institutions and is involved in more than 2000 joint research projects.

The faculty has 48 professors engaged in teaching and research, assisted by a staff of almost 300, of which 150 are involved in scientific work. The faculty currently has more than 2,700 students working in three Bachelor’s degree programmes, 11 Master’s degree programmes and a doctoral course, comprised of around 150 Ph.D. students of which 42 are international.

In terms both of teaching and research, UHOH contributes significantly to the development and evaluation of sustainable production techniques in agricultural and environmental sciences, as well as to the preservation of rural areas and consumer & environmental protection.
Research subject is the agricultural holding, its integration into the overall economy and the natural environment, but also agro-economic enterprises in the upstream and downstream sectors. The concept of a locally appropriate and sustainable agriculture, attempts to integrate the requirements of economy, technology and the environment in a harmonious approach. The study area includes European agriculture, Farm Management, Agricultural science and business management. As a founding member of a network of EU life science universities (Euroleague for Life Sciences), UHOH shows its international orientation by offering 8 Masters degrees in English. Office of international affairs hosts at the moment more than 1,000 international students from over 100 countries gathered in an International Students Organisation (ISO).

European University of Tirana

The European University of Tirana (UET) is a private higher education institution in Albania, established in 2006 in full compliance with the requirements of the Bologna Charter. UET developed curricula on Economy, Finance and Management at Bachelor, Master and PhD level, and especially with emphasis on Sustainable Development studies, European Integration studies. UET is engaged in high quality teaching and research as well as exchange programmes and capacity building projects and joint initiatives with local and international partners in the following major disciplines: law, social sciences, political sciences and economy and information technology. From September 2017, UET wants to extend its education offer on Agri- environmental and rural development policy instruments to translate into teaching modules its extensive and long-standing research activities with UBT and CIHEAM-IAMM in this field.

The vision of UET is to be a leading university in the development of knowledge in the Albanian society; a centre of excellence in the academic formation of students; a centre of expertise in the social, political, legal and economic studies in the country with a wider impact in the region and beyond; as well as a centre of excellence in scientific research.

UET has successfully participated in various regional and international projects funded by the European Commission such as Tempus, Erasmus Mundus, Erasmus+ curriculum development and mobility, Jean Monnet Chair (Albania toward the EU regional development), Life Long Learning Programmes, COST, and Instrument for Pre-Accession. The European University of Tirana encourages a culture of knowledge-sharing, openness and horizontal linkages between HEIs, CSOs, research centres, governmental organizations and relevant stakeholders.


Agricultural University of Tirana

Established in 1951 as the Higher Agricultural Institute with the status of a university, and renamed Agricultural University of Tirana in 1991, UBT is the unique Albanian center for undergraduate and graduate studies, scientific research, training and extension entirely dedicated to the area of agriculture and food (Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Protection, Agribusiness, Economy and Agrarian Policy, Agro-environment and Ecology, Agro-food Technology, Animal Husbandry and Business, Aquaculture and Fishery, Forestry, Veterinary Medicine).

The Faculty of Economy & Agribusiness (FEA) was founded in 1971 and is now the UBT’s biggest Academic Unit with over 6,500 students, with 15 degrees of the three cycles and 76 academic staff members. It aims at providing a complete professional training to its students, based on broad knowledge on economic theory and use of quantitative study approaches. FEA trains specialists with techniques, instruments and contemporary methods (both qualitative & quantitative) which give solutions to economy problems faced by rural development stakeholders.

The department of Economics, Policies of sustainable development has as a core subject of research and education the Agricultural, food and rural development policies and the effect of their instruments in rural areas.
UBT has established cooperation relations with many universities in Europe (such as Universities of Viterbo, Pisa, Florence, Perugia, Bari in Italy; Valenzano in Spain, University of Hohenheim- Stuttgart in Germany; Aristotle University of Thessaloniki & Patras University-in Greece; Nancy Polytechnic National Institute & CIHEAM-IAMM- in France) and in the USA (Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Universities of Atlanta, Georgia, Oklahoma, Cornell University).

 l panteionPanteion University of Social and Political Sciences

Panteion University is one of the oldest and largest public universities in Greece specialised in the field of Social and Political Sciences. Established in 1934 in Athens, it currently counts about 250 academic staff, over 6,000 students allocated in 4 Faculties and 9 Departments including 10 Postgraduate Programs. Research is developed in 3 Research Institutes, 18 Research Centers and 11 Laboratories. The Panteion Research Committee provides the administrative support and the economic management of research and Erasmus programmes.

UPSPS is specialised in analysis and interpretation of social phenomena and problems, social and economic policy planning; Institutions, Law and Policies of the European Union; Regional Policy and Development; Urban and Rural Areas sustainability; Environmental Law and Governance etc. Its large research experience and expertise is scientifically re-invested in undergraduate and postgraduate studies and in knowledge transfer to public bodies and policy institutions. The Centre for Social Morphology and Social Policy (KEKMOKOP) and the European Centre for Environmental Research and Training (EKEPEK) of UPSPS are active in rural development, sustainability and relevant policy instruments; environment and sustainable development, environmental governance mechanisms. EKEPEK hosts an observatory of policy and law on Climate change.

Thanks to its long-time close collaboration with the Laboratory of Rural Space of the University of Thessaly, through EU research projects and the DYNTAR Master program (Dynamique Territoriale et Aménagement Rural), UPSPS also covers educational and research needs in the fields of rural and territorial planning, integrated local development, participative territorial governance and planning, development of small towns in rural areas with an agri-environmental focus, use of ICTs for spatial analysis tools. The close linkage between UPSPS, Greek society and East-Mediterranean and Balkan countries must also be highlighted.


Université Paul-Valéry Montpellier 3

Founded in 1970, Paul-Valéry Montpellier 3 University (UPVM), a university specialized in Humanities, is characterized by a dynamic international outreach which has over time manifested itself through the implementation of numerous academic partnerships, mobility programmes and scientific collaborations.
With 700 academic teaching and research staff and 640 administrative and support staff, UPVM brings together a community of over 20,000 students (18% of whom are international students). UPVM has three campuses: two in the city of Montpellier and one in the city of Béziers.
Montpellier maintains the long academic tradition of the city dating from the Middle Ages when the former Schools of Medicine, Law and Arts were founded (in the 13th century). Located in the south of France, the city of Montpellier has one of the highest national demographic growth rates, and its student population has been growing continuously in the last decades to reach a total of 70,000 students in the different higher education institutions of the city. These institutions are organized as a COMUE – Community of Universities and Higher Education Institutions, sharing a number of services, among which a multi-service international student welcome office.


Associated partners:
Network for Rural Development (Albania)
Ministry of Education, Sports and Youth (Albania)
Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Water Administration( Albania)
Ministry of Urban Development (Albania)
Korçë Regional Council (Albania)



02The SMARTAL project was promoted in the Projects' Fair, organized at the European University of Tirana. On Erasmus Days 2021, several promotional materials of the project were made available to the participants.

SmartAL Workshop on “Internationalisation of higher education: a European passport to the Albanian j

244622835 4928814410481881 2548289973001648016 nOn the occasion of the Final Steering Committee of the SmartAL project, the International Center for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies-Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Montpellier (CIHEAM-IAMM), Coordinator, in collaboration with the Agricultural University of Tirana

SmartAL Project Case studies dissemination conference

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Moderators: Dr Elena Kokthi, UBT / Ms Elysa Gache, Université Paul Valéry Montpellier

"Cooperation and rural development: what prospect for Albanian rural areas? Case study of Gjirokastra and Puka districts”, Elda Muco, PhD student;

SmartAL Final Steering Committee

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The Final Steering Committee of the SmartAL Erasmus+ project took place at the Agricultural University of Tirana, gathering the partners of the Consortium:

The International Center for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies-Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Montpellier as Coordinator,

Work Fair organized by the UET

work fair

The SmartAL master was introduced at the Work fair organized by the UET, the main purpose of the project being to address the new labor market needs identified by the new and emerging public policies in Albania. This event promotes new opportunities for students and young people in Albania.


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Quality Plan


Two level of quality assurance will be used throughout the entire project duration:

-  Quality assurance of the whole project: the aim is to assure the compliance of the project processes and results with the standards agreed among the Partners (identified indicators of progress), and to implement a continuous quality monitoring. 

-  Quality assurance of the 9 Modules: the Albanian HEI-s have to follow an well-defined procedure for the quality assurance. HEI-s should build up internal quality bodies and respect the quality procedures foreseen by the existing Public Standard. A better quality assurance framework reflecting the Albanian public standards requests, and integrating best Albanian and EU practices will be set up.

Dissemination and exploitation


The dissemination and exploitation strategy enables SmartAL project to optimize its outcomes and impacts (including both theory and methodological processes and educational teaching/material). Dissemination will be an integral part of each activity of the project.
This WP activity supports the following objectives :
- Provide information about the achievement of the project.
- Increase the impact of the project.
- Maintain and create contacts with stakeholders of the project.
- Generate new partnership.
- Create a platform to ensure sustainable dissemination of the project outcomes.
This will be achieved through the creation of a website, Open House Days, Two conferences, several ongoing promotional campaings on our social media pages, creation of an Alumnii Assosciation


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The main objective of WP8 is to ensure the overall administrative and financial management of the project as well as the coordination and stimulation of all WP. WP8 is an overarching WP designed to support all the activities of the project. In particular by ensuring the smooth exchange of administrative and financial information and data, WP8 will guaranty that the resources are made available on time to each WP leader for them to implement their tasks as foreseen.