On 4 December, the edcom network met in Brussels at the Erasmushogeschool for the second annual Members’ Meeting. We worked together to further develop and implement the current 4Cs Programme, we shared updates on current and new initiatives and and fostered connections while exchanging ideas on how to create more value for our membership.
President Gilles Nakhle opened the meeting with a quick review of his programme to then delve into specific action points developed together with the board.
“Encouraging our students to compete, exchange ideas, and showcase their talents and creativity is at the core of our initiative. This effort is driven by the overarching goal of engaging the younger generation and cultivating a community of advocates, targeting all the talents from European universities”. This is how Gilles Nakhle introduced the first Challenge to then moved on to present potential projects to challenge even further the edcom students.
One of the main proposals for the future is to capitalize on the success of the edcom flagship competition, Ad Venture, and provide other opportunities for our students to live real-life working experiences, focusing more on creativity.
Another initiative that aroused the interest of many in the room is the edcom x TedX proposal. In a nutshell, Gilles presented the idea of empowering the students to organise an event around a topic of their choice. The idea would be to support them in a project that is entirely led by the students, from conception to realisation.
Kirstie Riedl from Fachhochschule shared with the network a few ideas on how to build on and capitalise on the outstanding research capabilities of the edcom network. At edcom, we have great researchers and an important wealth of knowledge in marketing and communications. The Collect Workstream Team’s proposal is to collect and curate the great content coming from our members, and to use it to engage with a business audience through channels and tools such as podcasts, LinkedIn articles, Videos and much more. There are already several research topics on which the members are working on:
AI, digital commerce, Social Media and Digital well-being, Sustainability, etc.
Building on the current edcom expertise to produce relevant content for the business and agency world is the first step to placing edcom as the missing link between academia and the industry.
Gilles Nakhle presented some of the early thoughts developed by Gresi Sange, Nişantaşı University, Turkey, and Richard Robinson, from Xeim Engage and Oystercatchers, on the Collaborate workstream. The ultimate goal is to create greater awareness for com as an entity, including our thought leadership, academic excellence, future industry talent and up-to-minute genZ insights.
A few concrete examples of collaboration might be:
Working with membership-based organisations focused on digital, marketing and other creative organisations like The Marketing Society;
Collaborate with local organisations of note that are non-member organisations that have large reach and influence. The Cannes Festival of Advertising, the Marketing Week, can be an interesting options to explore;
Working with Businesses and Brands who can benefit from com uniqueness (research expertise, access to GenZ and talents, etc.). An example can be working with Unilever.
Gilles quickly expanded on the Connect Workstream. The objective of this stream is to develop an integrated communication strategy to better communicate about the network, improve our visibility online and connect the members. to create engagement among this latter and their talents. With a multi-level target, we want to reach our members, new potential members, and our student communities and talents.
During the second part of the meeting, members had the opportunity to share with the network some of the initiatives organised at their respective universities.
The Bureau, Erasmus Hogeschool Brussels
Presented by Didier Van Ghyseghe from the hosting school, the Bureau programme is a collaborative project. It involves students from the 1st, 2nd and 3rd year to work on a brief provided by an actual organisation, comparable to a pitch situation. All the students are coached by a lecturer and the whole project has been devised to be a part of the teaching module. Do you want to know more about the programme the Bureau? Access here the full presentation.
Creative+, Panteion University, Athens
Our colleague Betty Tsakarestou, from the Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences, Athens, presented an outstanding initiative taking place at her university aimed at empowering students, providing them with resources, mentoring and networking opportunities to help them bring their ideas to life. Creative + is a collaborative space where students, researchers and the entire active academic community of Panteion University cultivate the culture of entrepreneurship and innovation and the development of cutting-edge business, digital and soft skills. Do you want to know more? Access the C+ presentation here.
Advertising Career Talks
Our colleague Dr Hyunsun Yoon, a professor at the University of Greenwich, put together a comprehensive overview of marketing and advertising competitions in Europe. Are you looking for new challenges for you and your students? This presentation is for you. Check out now the full deck!
Our next Meeting is tacking place in London, hosted by our member London College of Communication, part of the London School of Arts. We are gathering together on the 25&26 April to elect our new Board and President, to attend the final pitch of the 2024 Ad Venture competition organised in partnership with Lipton and much more.