The Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) is an institution that aims to build a “better society as an innovative, free inquiring and critical thinking university”. Originating from the French speaking Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), the division of the Dutch speaking VUB was confirmed in 1970. As a university independent of church and state, the VUB encourages “free inquiry” in the learning and research environment. 

Key initiatives

The Institute for European Studies is an “academic, policy think tank that focuses on the European Union in an international setting”. The goal of the IES  is to further research and education in various fields of study, as well as provide information for policy-makers, scholars, stakeholders, and the general public. The IES consists of five research clusters: international security, environment and sustainable development, migration, diversity and justice, european economic governance, and educational development. Within the environment and sustainable development cluster, researchers cover topics with an emphasis on climate change, such as forestry, biodiversity, energy, and more. See more.

The Cosmopolis Centre for Urban Research falls within the Department of Geography at the Vrije Universities Brussel, with a focus on researching spatial planning and urban design. With the goal of transforming knowledge into action, Cosmopolis, like the IES, works with policy-makers, government entities, citizens, and other players in Brussels and internationally. Current research at Cosmopolis addresses topics such as urban food systems, sustainable mobility, embedding a circular economy in Brussels, and housing policy. See more.  

At large events (or upon request), Homegrade organizes public workshops on energy reduction in the home.

Brussels Centre for Urban Studies is an entity of the VUB that brings researchers from different disciplines together. In striving to bring various VUB research groups together to exchange information and conduct studies, the Centre’s work is mainly focused on the Brussels level, with international scale work as well. The Centre “represents more than twenty research groups that all do research on urban themes from a disciplinary perspective”. Past studies have addressed topics such as modeling urban dynamics and reduction of residential energy consumption. See more. 

MOBI, the Mobility, Logistics and Automotive Technology Research Centre focuses on five domains: electric and autonomous vehicles, sustainable logistics, battery innovation, urban mobility, and sustainable energy communities. MOBI’s goal is to develop tools for the sustainable transport sector in an effort to create lasting, positive environmental impacts. Within the domain of sustainable energy communities, MOBI has built a body of research for a multi-energy system. The EVERGI project designs, optimizes, and evaluates “multi-energy systems” to support the VUB’s Green Energy Park research platform. See more. 


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