The University of Tulsa is pleased to announce that TU recently became the 31st member of the World Energy University Network (WEUN) –a world-wide coalition of universities across the globe who share strategic interest in research, innovation, education and internationalization in the field of energy.
Dr. Jim Sorem, Dean of TU’s College of Natural Sciences and Engineering along with Dr. Martin Freer, Director of Birmingham Energy Institute, University of Birmingham, were invited to co-host a synchronous webinar to discuss the impact of COVID 19 on energy including short and long-term strategies. Based in Beijing at the Petroleum University of China, WEUN members across the globe participated in the virtual discussion held July 22nd, 2020. Other speakers included representation from Khalifa University, Azerbaijan State and Oil Industry University, Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas, Heriot-Watt University (Scotland), University of Alberta, and University of Calgary.
Four key questions were discussed including the critical impacts from the changing energy industry including energy education and research, predictions for the future of energy education, short-term reactions to the pandemic and energy industry turbulence, and the impact upon one’s university graduates’ employment and income.
The most prevalent themes that evolved from the 2 hour discussion were 1) the critical nature of sustained and collaborative partnerships across the globe, 2) more information sharing, including courses, instruction and research that result in a collaborate rather than competitive environment, 3) the concern that COVID could lead to more isolation rather than collaboration and steps must be taken to avoid this pitfall, and 4) interdisciplinary collaboration at all levels is essential. Several speakers addressed the need for flexibility, change and research in a timely manner.
More information on WEUN can be found at http://www.cup.edu.cn/weun/english/index.htm.