The EUniWell team during the evaluation session of the new VOICE methodology at the University of Cologne.

The EUniWell project ‘Decentring Global Epistemologies on Global Well-being’ finished in spectacular style in Cologne, Germany. The team consists of partners from Leiden University, Université Mohammed V de Rabat, University of Birmingham, University of Cologne, University of Nairobi and University of the Western Cape. The EUniWell team met up to discuss the outcomes, implications and lessons learnt from the project. In addition to the academic team, six representatives of the student participants from all African and European partner universities. On their arrival, they were joined and welcomed by the EUniWell Managing Director Graham Harrison. The trip also coincided with the European Conference on African Studies (ECAS 2023): ‘African Futures’, where the team delivered an excellently attended roundtable on ‘How to make academic cooperation work’. Here the perspectives of the student participants, teaching fellows and academic team were all presented. Well-being was introduced through the themes of knowledge, intersectionality, and the environment. Consensus was reached that for global learning on well-being to be effective, there is a need for methodologies and platforms to allow for effective exchange and discussion of ideas around contested ideas.  The team introduced their new methodology: the VOICE (Virtual Online International Collaborative Exchange), which allows for equitable understanding of global issues that require methodologies that allow effective exchange of ideas, and the ability to reach new understandings with associated documentation. The VOICE methodology was debuted on the topic of global well-being, but it is now hoped that the approach will now be used far and wide to study other subjects that require equitable collaboration between different global institutions.

The student participants presenting their reflections on the Decentring Global Epistemology on global wellbeing’ course at the ECAS 2023 conference