Building Stronger Universities in Developing Countries

Danida takes over the management of BSU from Phase II (2014 – 2016)

Danida has taken over the management of the BSU programme from Phase II running from January 2014 to November 2016. Danida will implement the programme as part of their portfolio in a direct cooperation with selected universities in the South.

Thus, Universities Denmark will no longer be part of the programme. Instead, Danida will facilitate a match-making directly between selected universities in the South and Danish universities, research centres, departments or institutes.

For more information about the organisational re-structure, see the website

For information about Danida’s implementation of Phase II, see Danida Fellowship Centre’s website

NB: Links to websites for the initiative's phase I: BSU GeneralEnvironment and Climate, Growth and Employment, Human Health and Stability Democracy and Rights.

This site will no longer be updated.

“Building Stronger Universities in Developing Countries” is a partnership between research and higher education institutions in developing countries and Danish universities. The long-term goal of the initiative is to make the participating institutions stronger in the sense that they:

  • play an increasing role in the economic, social and political development of the societies in which they are located;
  • function as nodes of innovation and knowledge production, providing solutions to local/domestic and global challenges;
  • produce skilled and motivated graduates that can contribute to the further development of the societies and address the challenges faced.    
Thematic platforms
The “Building Stronger Universities” initiative has a structure with four thematic platforms:

The themes are linked, and the initiative envisages and encourages collaboration and interaction between platforms.

In its initial stage the initiative comprises cooperation involving the eight universities in Denmark and selected universities in Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Nepal. Focus will be on institutional capacity building, including strengthening the capacity and quality of PhD education, strengthening the capacity to undertake research and disseminating research knowledge to stakeholders. 

The BSU initiative granted 60 million DKK for 2011 - 2013

In May 2011 an international panel of experts evaluated the descriptions and activity plans, developed by the four platforms. Based on the proposals and the recommendations the Rectors’ College of Universities Denmark finalised its application to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In June 2011 the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark approved a 60 million DKK (11.5 million USD) grant for the initial two year period from August 2011.

Universities Denmark and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are in agreement that the initiative shall continue beyond 2013.


Organisational setup

An internal Universities Denmark working group discusses matters in relation to the initiative and advices the Danish Rectors’ Conference.


Each of the four thematic platforms has a Danish steering committee which encompasses one representative from each of the Danish universities with competences within the theme.


A partner steering committee has been established at each of the cooperating universities in the partner countries. Finally, at each of these universities at least one working group has been established for each of the involved platforms.


Inception reports

Platform descriptions

Further information

Want to know more
For information about the four thematic platforms, follow the links above.

For information about the overall structure and scope of the initiative, contact:

Project manager Arne Skov Andersen: E-mail: as @ . Phone (+45) 33 36 98 16