The Compostela Group of Universities and the European Institute of Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe signed today in Santiago de Compostela an agreement to cooperate in the development of activities and interdisciplinary studies on cultural routes in the field of higher education. Both institutions, through the Network of Universities on Cultural Routes Studies, will work together to promote inter-university exchange and mobility of students and researchers. Besides, they will collaborate in the design of research programmes and projects that will focus on the cultural routes of the Council of Europe.

The representative of the Compostela Group of Universities, Carla Martins, and the special advisor to the Council of Europe’s Cultural Routes programme, Eladio Fernández-Galiano, signed this agreement. The Regional Minister of Culture and Tourism, Román Rodríguez, and the commissioner of Xacobeo 2021, Cecilia Pereira, were present at this ceremony.

This agreement was signed within the framework of the final academic meeting of the project ‘Linking University knowledge on the Camino‘, promoted by the Compostela Group of Universities and financed by the Xunta de Galicia, within the O teu Xacobeo programme. In this meeting the students, professors and administrative staff of the universities of Oviedo (Spain), Minho (Portugal) and Monterrey (Mexico) presented the initiatives of the university and inter-university working groups.

Two selection committees were in charge of evaluating these initiatives after the presentations and awarded two prizes of 200 euros to the most outstanding of each category. The inter-university initiative ‘Red del Camino de Santiago’, centred on improving the experience of the towns along the route and of the pilgrims, was recognised as the best interdisciplinary and inter-university initiative on sustainable development goals and the Technological Camino. The University of Monterrey with its initiative ‘Un buen camino’, an app to generate a bond between pilgrims and local communities, won the prize for the best university initiative on the elderly, mobility, rural areas and pilgrims.

The awards ceremony closed this event, which in its academic part included lectures by experts such as the special advisor to the Council of Europe’s Cultural Routes programme, Eladio Fernández Galiano, and the founder of the Institute for Pilgrimage Studies of William & Mary Higher Education Institution, George Greenia.