STEMskiller: Skill Set Map for Mentors of Early Career Researchers


Global engagement


Science is a global endeavor, and many institutions have developed “global engagement” programs to facilitate transfer of knowledge across international boundaries in the form of exchange programs, residencies abroad, and so on.“ Learning about the world, helping to solve the world’s greatest problems, and working with international collaborators who share…curiosity and commitment to rigorous scientific inquiry”[1] are typical aims of such programs and institutional strategies. Mentors who desire strong international performance by their mentees should consider opportunities for global engagement (in any form) as part of their mentorship plans. Global engagement programs also can have ties to sustainable development programs, as seen in just one example with ETH Zurich’s for Development (ETH4D) program, which:

…aims to develop innovations that address global challenges and educate future leaders in sustainable development.

Fighting poverty remains one of the biggest challenges of the 21st century. The obstacles poor people face in their everyday lives include access to affordable, functional, and sustainable housing, health, education, nutrition, water, energy, transportation, financial and insurance services, and security.

Technological innovations offer tremendous potential for poverty reduction, but they must be developed and deployed with a profound understanding of people’s needs and behavior, the planet’s ecology, and society’s varying structures.

ETH4D supports research and learning that combines varied knowledge and skills from engineering to social sciences, from natural sciences to the humanities, from scientists to citizens, and from research to practice.[2] 

[1] Lester, R.K. (2017). Preface to A Global Strategy for MIT.

[2] ETH Zurich. (2020). ETH for Development.

Useful resources on Global engagement:

MIT. (2017). A Global Strategy for MIT.

Provides institutions wishing to enhance global strategies at their institutions with a blueprint for doing so. Includes description of this institution’s current and planned global engagement efforts, key goals and principles, recommendations for the future, and risks in a changing environment.

University of California Berkeley. (2020). Global Engagement Office.

Provides an example for institutions without a global engagement office of how such a unit can be structured. Includes sample guiding principles and mission statement as well as information about institutional agreements and for faculty & staff, partners & visitors, students, and alumni.

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4.6. Global engagement


Author: Stephanie Krueger

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Last Updated: October 28, 2021


Editor: Stephanie Krueger Last modified: 28.10. 2021 13:10