Dundee-Lagos – breaking the borders of partnership

Published on 1 November 2023

Leaders from the Universities of Dundee and Lagos have strengthened links between the two institutions in a new commitment to working in equitable partnership

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In October 2023, Professor Iain Gillespie, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Dundee, joined partners at the University of Lagos (UniLag), Nigeria, for their International Week.  

Under the theme ‘Breaking the Borders of Partnership’, the event brought together researchers, policy makers, regulatory and funding agencies, prestigious educational institutions and businesses to explore ways to further enhance research collaborations for development. 

Professor Gillespie is the first University Principal to visit Nigeria. He joined Professor Folasade T. Ogunsola, Vice-Chancellor of UniLag, in an aim to foster connections and discuss visions to create a lasting impact on the academic and culture landscape of both institutions.  

At an event titled ‘Vice-Chancellors’ Dialogue’, both higher education leaders expressed optimism about the capacity of universities to forge partnerships and offer solutions to existing global challenges, and emphasised the imperatives of internationalisation and bilateralism among universities. 

To cement a Dundee-Lagos alliance, Professor Gillespie and Professor Ogunsola signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the respective universities. 

Professor Gillespie said, "Building truly equitable global partnerships is at the forefront of our globalisation agenda, and this new collaboration is yet another step toward realising our ambition. I am delighted to expand our partnership with the University of Lagos.” 

Professor Ogunsola added, “Over the years, our university has continued to partner with top class institutions in creating an avenue for opportunities that would further entrench our status as a University of First choice in Nigeria. These linkages and collaborations, we believe, will be the core of our internationalisation drive, and the springboard on which our research output and ratings would depend, as we can no longer operate in isolation.  

“As part of my agenda to run a continuum of the process and make the university a future-ready, research-oriented and enterprise-driven hub, we have started to deploy the framework that encapsulates the four growth pillars with the acronym “FIRM” - Financial re-engineering, Infrastructural Development, Reputation building through teaching, research and innovation, and Manpower for Development.  

“It is on the premise of the foregoing that we are determined to develop more Memoranda of Understanding with foreign universities, inter-governmental agencies, and top-class institutions in a bid to improve the quality and relevance of our research, teaching and learning experience. The signing of MoU with the University of Dundee is a further demonstration of our commitment to the actualisation of the FIRM framework.” 


Jessica Rorke

Media Relations Officer

+44 (0)1382 388878