UMD: A Globally Connected University
About Global Partnerships
The University of Maryland believes that a great university must be a globally connected one, and we want to help you develop more international partnerships.
Lots of UMD faculty, researchers, units, and programs work with counterparts around the globe. These collaborations are often informal; for example, a faculty member at UMD might arrange for a UMD student to spend time doing research at a colleague’s institution in another country. Such a relationship becomes a global partnership when a formal agreement is signed between the two institutions.
Why should I/we propose a global partnership?
The normal threshold for going from an informal international collaboration to a formal one is your desire or need to share institutional-level resources. For example, if you and your partners want your students to take courses for credit at each other’s institutions, then there needs to be a formal agreement between the institutions on how that is to be done, because those course credits need to be paid for. Or, if your department wants to exchange faculty with a department at an international partner on a regular basis, then there needs to be a formal agreement between the schools on how that is to be done, since there are institutional services being promised.
Who can propose a new UMD global partnership?
Any unit or member of UMD’s permanent staff (full-time faculty, researchers, and administrators) can propose a formal collaboration with an international partner institution. The main prerequisites are a previous track record between the UMD sponsor and the proposed partner and a plausible plan for the collaboration.
Are there reasons NOT to establish a global partnership?
Sure. If your collaboration with an international partner does not involve the exchange of institutional resources and you do not plan a more intensive relationship, then there is no need to create a formal relationship. In fact, UMD generally prefers to avoid international agreements that are not connected to a substantive plan for collaboration. Unsure? This Decision Tree for International Academic Agreements may help.
What is the process for establishing a global partnership?
The first step in establishing a global partnership is normally the crafting and signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between UMD and the partner institution. This is a very general document, indicating that the leaders of the two institutions support more specific cooperation between them. Learn more about creating an MOU. An MOU is normally accompanied—or followed soon—by a detailed programmatic agreement, such as a student exchange or joint degree program. Learn more about the types of programmatic agreements UMD has with international partners.
Who can I talk to for guidance on establishing a global partnership?
Contact Joe Scholten, OIA associate director, for further information and advice.