Campus News

BU joins Open Society University Network as an founding member


Brac University (BU) joins Open Society University Network (OSUN) as an founding member. Both share the same mission of international, impactful engagement and student experience.

BU’s vision to be the international university in Bangladesh goes hand in hand with OSUN’s idea to build global academic partnerships. Endowed with $1 Billion, OSUN was brought into life by George Soros, the founder of the Open Society Foundation (OSF). Central European University and Bard College form the base of this network. Other international partners are Arizona State University and the American University of Central Asia. Joining this global network is a natural next step in BU’s aspirations of becoming Bangladesh’s international university.

Vice-Chancellor Vincent Chang had a vision of a revamped “BU 2.0” shortly after he joined BU last year. He presented his vision of internationalization, student experience and impactful engagement during his first meeting with Leonard Benardo, vice president of OSF, in July 2019. OSF was genuinely impressed by Professor Chang’s ideas, all of which were the first of their kinds in Bangladesh. Both sides expressed strong interest in collaboration. During the next conference calls, they decided to meet once again in person for further clarification.

Professor Chang was serious about joining OSUN when he flew out to New York City on 7 January, 2020. His presentation in OSF’s Manhattan office put BU on their radar and on the global map. This became even more obvious when George Soros announced BU’s involvement with OSUN in the same breath with other international institutions at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on 24 January, 2020. George Soros then doubled the funding money from initially $500 Million to $1 Billion. In April, Prof. Chang will meet the stakeholders of OSUN in Vienna to discuss the next steps.

OSUN will connect BU with other international institutions. Being part of this network creates unique opportunities for researchers and students to interact with counterparts from different parts of the world. This collaboration is going to contribute to various research projects and international experiences. OSUN benefits from BU’s active participation as the only university from South Asia.