This page will tell you more about the policies and initiatives at the University of Antwerp for increasing ethnic-cultural inclusion at our university.

1.      Policy

1.1.  Strategic framework Global Engagement

In 2021 and 2022, several groups worked on the strategic framework Global Engagement. This strategy builds on the existing cooperation and solidarity with partners in the Global South, but also takes it a step further by separating Engagement from an international context and taking a critical look at global citizenship and decolonisation within the university itself. These topics, as well as an analysis of our education and research policies regarding global engagement, a critical look at the content and diversity of our curriculum, and a focus on intercultural, international and anti-racist competencies of both students and staff are closely linked to ethnic cultural inclusion.

Click here for a summary of the framework, as well as the extended version.

For more information, please contact

1.2.  Student Diversity Action Plan

The Student Diversity Action Plan was launched in 2018 and aims to promote the intake, advancement and outflow of students from disadvantaged groups. In the Flemish Educational System, a pupil or student’s background (in particular their socio-economic status and migration background) has an important impact on their study results (OECD, 2015; 2018).

Click here to read more about the Student Diversity Action Plan.

For more information, please contact

1.3.  Diversity Action Plan for Staff

Alongside the Student Diversity Action Plan, there is also a Diversity Action Plan for Staff addressing six diversity topics, including ethnic-cultural diversity.

Click here to read more about the Diversity Action Plan for Staff.

For more information, please contact

1.4.  Flemish Interuniversity Council and Young Academy – Collaboration on ethnic-cultural diversity in higher education

Since January 2022, the Flemish Interuniversity Council (VLIR) and the Young Academy are committed to promoting ethnic-cultural diversity and inclusion in student affairs, education, human resources and research by:

·         working towards a widely adopted document containing evidence-informed and efficient (SMART) initiatives which the Flemish universities will actively seek to promote.

·         encouraging inter-university exchange of good practices on this topic.

2.      Ethnic-cultural diversity network

In December 2022, a preliminary talk was held regarding the establishment of an ethnic-cultural diversity network.

Interested in participating? Please contact or  

3.      Campaigns and activities

3.1.   Patrice Lumumba auditorium

“The debate on decolonization is a hot topic in our society, including at this university, the University of Antwerp. Which is only logical, since people with roots in migration, Africa or elsewhere, are sometimes faced with structural racism, microaggression, prejudice – at times also at our own university.” (rector Herman Van Goethem)

This auditorium inauguration is an awareness-raising event highlighting an important individual: Patrice Lumumba, an significant symbol of emancipation, respect, equality and human rights. The ceremonial naming of this auditorium took place on 31 March 2023, in the presence of family members of the late Patrice Lumumba. With this tribute, the university wishes to reinforce its commitment to global justice and solidarity.

From this inauguration onwards, the month of March will annually be marked by a critical collective exercise in decolonizing our university.

For more information, please contact or

4.      Initiatives towards a more inclusive university

The University of Antwerp aims to be an inclusive environment for everyone. We take into account the specific barriers that certain (groups of) people experience at our institution and for instance specifically consider the ethnic-cultural diversity in the following inclusive initiatives.

Training courses for staff members and students

  • Bystander training
  • Training courses by Klein Barnum

Training courses for students

  • University-wide, interdisciplinary courses: Global Justice, Debating Development, City and Diversity, Migration, Integration and naturalisation ... 

Training courses for staff members

  • Diversity-responsive actions
  • Intercultural communication
  • ‘Dealing with reports of discrimination’: training for first point of contacts
  • Qualitative selection and recruitment with attention to the effect of implicit bias

Training courses for professors


  • Inclusive communication reflection tool
  • Glossary on diversity
  • Toolbox quality recruitment

This is not an exhaustive list. Would you like to learn more about how we incorporate the topic of ethnic-cultural diversity into our Team Diversity’s initiatives and policy work? Please contact

5.      Reports of racism and discrimination

The University of Antwerp is working on the reinforcement of its reporting channels for transgressive behaviour, discrimination and racism. Would you like to make a report of discrimination, racism or transgressive behaviour?

Please contact our confidential advisors.