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ICM 2018 project results

Within the ICM 2018 project, Leiden University cooperated with 25 partner universities from 14 countries. In total, 97 mobilities were granted to this project - 65 mobilities were realised (some mobilities had to be ended prematurely due to covid-19, others were finished online).

Unfortunately, not all planned mobilities were realised due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic and the travel restrictions that were subsequently imposed.

Student mobilities

ICM 2018 increased the study abroad opportunities for students at Leiden University and its partners, especially for those students who would otherwise not have sufficient financial means to take part in exchanges. Students strengthened their academic skills and learned from peers with different views and backgrounds, improved their language and cultural skills, and gained the experience of living in a different country – all contributing to their personal and professional development. In addition, they contributed to a more diverse international classroom for their peers at the host institution. Several faculties were involved, enabling exchanges in the fields of Law, Physics, Medicine and Humanities.

Staff mobilities

Staff members cooperated in international collaborative initiatives and teaching as well as international training programmes in the fields of Physics, Law, Educational Sciences, Humanities and Medicine, leading to exchanges of good practices and several events and publications. The covid-19 pandemic disrupted many plans, but thanks to the flexibility of partners it was possible to organise alternative activities such as an online conference. The project strengthened the international character of Leiden University and its partners, and in many cases it paved the way for future collaboration between the institutions involved.

Dissemination activities and project results per project

  • Brazil: 2 incoming student mobilities from Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte and Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro.
  • China: 2 incoming student mobilities and 1 outgoing staff mobility for teaching from and to Shandong University.
  • Cuba: 1 incoming student mobility and 2 incoming staff mobilities for training from Universidad de La Habana.
  • Egypt: 4 incoming and 8 outgoing student mobilities from and to The American University in Cairo.
  • Israel: 5 incoming and 8 outgoing student mobilities for studies and 1 outgoing student mobility for traineeship from and to The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
  • Kazakhstan: 5 incoming staff mobilities for training and 5 outgoing staff mobilities for teaching from and to Kazakh National Pedagogical University after Abai and KAZGUU University.
  • Kenya: 2 incoming student mobilities from Catholic University of Eastern Africa and Strathmore University.
  • Lebanon: 1 incoming and 1 outgoing student mobility from and to Université de Saint Esprit-Kaslik Autorité Religieuse.
  • Morocco: 4 incoming student mobilities from Université Mohammed V de Rabat, 2 incoming student mobilities for traineeships from Université Moulay Ismail.
  • Rwanda: 1 incoming student mobility from University of Rwanda.
  • Singapore: no mobilities realised due to covid-19.
  • Suriname: 1 incoming student mobility from Anton de Kom Universiteit van Suriname.
  • Ukraine: 3 incoming student mobilities and 1 outgoing staff mobility for teaching from and to Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv.
  • Uzbekistan: 1 incoming and 2 outgoing student mobilities and 2 incoming staff mobilities for teaching from Tashkent State Institute of Oriental Studies and Samarqand Davlat Universiteti.


the most important results to share are those obtained experimentally in the laboratory that generate scientific articles in high-impact journals. Mobility allows us to exchange cultures, knowledge and participate in congresses, conferences and exchange ideas with specialists from around the world on the same subject. This project has notably increased the visibility of the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN) in Natal, Brazil and the Medical Center of the University of Leiden.


we created a series of workshops, a video (Four years of Erasmus Cooperation), and a virtual presentation at the European Conference on Language Learning, July 2021. See https://ecll.iafor.org/ecll2021-virtual-presentations/ and https://vimeo.com/571043246.


every week, the two incoming students held presentations in which they provided an overview and analysis of their fieldwork findings. This “learning by doing” approach helped them a lot in obtaining better presentation skills, in English, and it also forced them to analyse their fieldwork findings on a continuous basis. The two students had two mentors, who are PhD candidates in the coordinator’s research project. The PhD researchers gained important skills in supervising young researchers. On request of one of them, the students also learned how to integrate novels and films in academic articles.


as part of the student exchange, the student did research and wrote texts for the Virtual Caribbean Ties museum.


ICM gave Ukrainian students the opportunity to work in high-level research laboratories. One of them eventually obtained a prestigious scholarship to continue her studies at LU.


In spring 2019, a PhD candidate from the Tashkent State Institute of Oriental Studies spent three months at Leiden University Library carrying out research related to his dissertation, which was defended in December 2019. As a result of his international activities, including the Erasmus+ project, he was awarded a presidential scholarship in Uzbekistan in 2020. See [http] tashgiv.uz/en/sharqshunos-doktorant-prezident-stipendiyasi-sohibiga-aylandi

In October 2019, the Dean of the Faculty of History at Samarkand State University delivered a series of guest lectures to MA students in the seminars on Material Culture of Central Asia and Critical Heritage Studies. Information was disseminated via the website of Samarkand State University [http] samdu.uz/en/news/493. Her lectures were included in the syllabus of the two classes.

In spring 2020, a PhD candidate at Leiden University, spent three months carrying out research at the library of the Al-Biruni Institute for Oriental Manuscripts. In May 2020 she delivered a series of master classes at the Tashkent State Institute of Oriental Studies. See: [http] erasmusplus.uz/news/An-Erasmus-Fellowship-in-Quarantine-Productivity-in-Captivity.htm, and [http] tashgiv.uz/en?s=Jaimee

She gave bi-weekly lectures on the topics of her dissertation to the scholars and researchers there and incorporated this material to present in Farsi three times a week for undergraduates in the Department of Iranian and Afghan Philology at the University of Oriental Studies.

Leiden University website, with publications related to the collaborations with Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan:



  • Controlled Release Society Annual Meeting and Exposition July 2019, Valencia, Spain
  • Controlled Release Society Annual Meeting and Exposition June 2020


  • IV Smart Materials and Surfaces - SMS Conference 2018, Venice, Italy. (2018)
  • Controlled Release Society Annual Meeting and Exposition, Valencia, Spain. (2019)


  • The results of the CLIL workshops were reported during the KAZTEA (Kazakhstan Teachers of English Association) conferences in 2018 in Pavlodar and 2019 in Almaty.
  • At the European Conference on Language Learning, in July 2021, a virtual presentation on Four years of Erasmus Cooperation is given by Bakhyt Yermanova (Pavlodar) and Errol Ertugluloglu (ICLON). https://ecll.iafor.org/ecll2021-virtual-presentations/. and: https://vimeo.com/571043246



The research carried out thanks to the financing of this project has allowed us to participate in several workshops in Brazil and the Netherlands, and also in the scientific seminars of both research groups.


Shandong Law School students shared their experience in seminars with junior students who are interested in such programs. (target group: Shandong Law Students)


The work carried out thanks to the financing of this project has made it possible to participate in various workshops in Cuba and the Netherlands, as well as in the scientific seminars of both research groups


  • Visit of the Uzbek ambassador to Leiden University Library, lecture by Professor Charles Melville and presentation of Central Asian manuscripts, participation of Mr Nodir Karimov
  • [http] persian.pem.cam.ac.uk/news-and-events/shaibanids-between-timur-and-chiggis-khan-visual-dilemmas
  • universiteitleiden.nl/en/events/2019/05/the-shaibanids-between-timur-and-chinggis-khan-visual-dilemmas
  • Guest lecture by Ms. Jaimee Comstock-Skipp at the Netherlands Institute in Turkey, 19 April 2020 “From the Khan to the Sultan” by Jaimee Comstock-Skipp: [http] www.nit-istanbul.org/message/online-lecture-from-the-khan-to-the-sultan-by-jaimee-comstock-skipp


  • STAT3/NF‐κB signalling disruption in M2 tumour‐associated macrophages is a major target of PLGA nanocarriers/PD‐L1 antibody immunomodulatory therapy in breast cancer. Rômulo S. Cavalcante  Uta Ishikawa Emanuell S. Silva, Arnóbio A. Silva-Júnior,  Aurigena A. Araújo,  Luis J. Cruz,  Alan B. Chan, Raimundo F. de Araújo Júnior. -L1_antibody_immunomodulatory_therapy_in_breast_cancer [accessed Jul 26 2021]. British Journal of Pharmacology
  • Correction to: Cholesterol-functionalized carvedilol-loaded PLGA nanoparticles: anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antitumor effects. Ana Luiza C. de S. L. Oliveira&Alaine M. dos Santos-Silva&Arnóbio A. da Silva-Júnior&Vinícius B. Garcia&Aurigena A. de Araújo&Lioe-Fee de Geus-Oei&Alan B. Chan&Luis J. Cruz&Raimundo F. de Araújo Júnior. J Nanopart Res (2020) 22: 197.
  • Ceramide and palmitic acid inhibit macrophagemediated epithelial–mesenchymal transition in colorectal cancer. Raimundo Fernandes de Araujo Junior,  · Christina Eich, · Carla Jorquera, · Timo Schomann, · Fabio Baldazzi · Alan B. Chan, · Luis J. Cruz. Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry (2020) 468:153–16


  • Replica of the Special Eurobarometer 382 Public Attitudes towards Robot Technology. This formal academic output represents a step forward in tightening our relationship with Shandong University (target group: researchers and students)


  • J. García, L. J. Cruz, G. Fuentes, A. Almirall, T. Li. Empleo de técnicas microscópicas en la caracterización y evaluación biológica de hidrogeles para ingeniería de tejido cartilaginoso. Acta Microscópica 2017, 26(A): 135-136
  • J. García, Y.Campos, S. Torres, G. Fuentes, E. Peón, A. Almirall, J. A. Delgado, J. C. Rodríguez Cabello, Luis. J. Cruz. A novel information criterion to elucidate a drug delivery mechanism from poly (acrylamide-co-2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) reinforced with hydroxyapatite composite, Polymer 2018, 158: 279-288
  • J García-Couce, A. Almirall, G. Fuentes, E. Kaijzel, A. Chan, L. J. Cruz. Targeting Polymeric Nanobiomaterials as a Platform for Cartilage Tissue Engineering. Current Pharmaceutical Design, 2019, 25(17): 1915-1932
  • García-Couce, J.; Vernhes, M.; Bada, N.; Agüero, L.; Valdés, O.; Alvarez-Barreto, J.; Fuentes, G.; Almirall, A.; Cruz, L.J. Synthesis and Evaluation of AlgNa-g-Poly(QCL-co-HEMA) Hydrogels as Platform for Chondrocyte Proliferation and Controlled Release of Betamethasone. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22, 5730.


  • The online catalogue of the exhibition Silk Road Cities is available.
  • Ms. Jaimee Comstock-Skipp wrote up two articles using previously assembled material to publish in local journals in Tashkent, and another one is getting reviewed to be included in a book on the arts of Central Asia in the collections of Cambridge University.


Through this project, several members of the research group have been invited to give lectures at congresses and universities in Brazil, The Netherlands, Italy, Spain and the United States, which have been recognized for the high scientific level and quality of the presentations.


As part of the project staff members of the research team have been invited to give lectures at congresses and universities in Cuba, The Netherlands, Italy, Spain and the United States which have been well received and recognized for the high scientific level and quality of the presentations.



Students with an ICM experience actually play a large role in the promotion of the programme and the preparation of the students that are going abroad, both within the faculties and at central level. At the online Study Abroad Festival they shared their experiences via student panel sessions on various aspects of studying abroad. These session were well attended and interactive.

A Pre-Departure Orientation session is organised for outgoing exchange students, with detailed information on health and safety and intercultural awareness followed by a meet & greet event with exchange alumni.

Information for students about studying abroad in the online learning environment. For example at the Faculty of Humanities, every student that studies abroad is obliged to write a report about their study abroad experience. Standard topics are i.e. academic programme, tips and tricks for other students, cost of living and communication with the host university. These reports are published on the Humanities Study Abroad Blackboard to inform and inspire fellow students.


This scientific exchange has allowed us to investigate and solve health problems that affect humanity. For example, working with alternative therapies to modulate the immune system in the tumor microenvironment, a critical factor to improve the treatment options in solid cancers. This project is part of the project “Biological modulation of nanoparticles in microenvironment of inflammation-induced tumors” that allow us a complete develop between by Brazilian and Dutch staff. We did an in vitro and in vivo anti tumor evaluation, and on new controlled release systems through biochemical immune response mechanisms. These results will make it possible to establish new collaborations with European universities of high scientific prestige.


The experiences have been shared in the Leiden Law School online weekly staff newsletter. We have also shared this information with our China Region Group. Shandong law students shared their experiences with fellow students during seminars/workshops.


The students organized informal meetings within the faculties. They also met with other PhD candidates at our institute. Interaction was limited due to Covid restrictions.

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