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3. Together with our stakeholders

As an educational institution with a social mission, we are at the heart of society. Our network of stakeholders stretches across the full breadth of society, from far across the border to within the municipality of Nijmegen. These stakeholders – funders of our research, governments, scientific institutes and the business community – expect us to make our values visible. Based on impactful themes, we regularly explore who might be valuable partners for us.

Academic freedom, commitment, readiness for dialogue and expertise are important considerations here. We strive to share issues, find allies for initiatives, build trust and create added-value solutions for the short and long term. All university departments contribute to this in dialogue with external parties such as suppliers, knowledge institutions, regulators and civil society organisations. The figure to the left gives an overview of our most important stakeholders. 

Although contacts within our networks have been strongly influenced by COVID-19, we emphasised our ambition to meaningfully engage with partners in 2020. See the project City Deal Kennis Maken, in which we work with HAN University of Applied Sciences and ROC Nijmegen to contribute to issues in neighbourhoods, this year an education project in the village of Lent. Or see our affiliation with the European Universities Initiative or the new Master's programme on slavery, a collaboration with the University of Glasgow. We maintained our contacts as well as possible, often by offering online alternatives when physical presence was not possible, for example at the opening of the academic year and Founder's Day.

Relevant Social Topics

In 2020, we asked various stakeholders what they saw as relevant social themes for Radboud University. Those stakeholders included students, staff members, the national government, the municipality, the business community/financial sector and the VSNU.

Some of these stakeholder discussions took place as part of a ‘materiality analysis’ for our sustainability programme. Based on a survey of internal management and our internal and external stakeholders, priorities were identified for the new joint sustainability policy (2021–2025) with Radboud university medical center. This survey was followed by a dialogue to better understand the stakeholders’ expectations and needs.

The stakeholders attach the greatest importance to sustainability in education and research, healthy and vital employees, diversity and inclusiveness, and the sustainable campus. Students also want to know what happens to their tuition fees. The table below shows where these topics are described in this annual report.

Material topics

Reference within the report

Sustainability in research

Research for a sustainable world

Sustainability in education

Sustainability in education (part of ‘innovations in education’)

Healthy and vital staff members

A safe and healthy campus

Diversity and inclusion

Diversity on campus

Sustainable campus

The sustainable campus

Expenditure of tuition fees

How education is financed