Year of Foundation

Ghent University (UGent) is an open pluralistic and comprehensive University. It has a student population of about 50,000 students, of which 7,000 are foreign students. In 2020, the university generated over 420 million euros in research expenditure, and employed around 8400 research staff (including doctoral researchers). Ghent University is ranked 84th in the Shanghai and 107th in the Times ranking. Ghent University’s top-100 position in the two major university rankings opens up new opportunities across the globe: it has a well-developed academic partnership strategy and has cooperation agreements with more than 500 universities around the world. In addition, the university has opened its first Asian campus with the launch of Ghent University Global Campus in Songdo, Korea. Traditionally, Ghent University obtained a major part of the Flemish budget for Development Cooperation research funding, indicating a strong commitment to North-South partnerships.

The university is one of the fastest-growing European universities in terms of research capacity and productivity. The University is engaged in over 200 Horizon Europe projects and has participated in 380 projects in Horizon 2020, of which 49 are ERC grants and 39 Marie Curie Fellowships. Ghent University has 27 business development centres in different disciplines all working on applied research and technology transfer. There are powerful partnerships with renowned research centres such as VIB and IMEC, as well as partners in the industry. Since the introduction of Europe’s prestigious ERC programme Ghent University has been the proud host to many ERC grantees.

The Flemish Odysseus initiative currently finances 11 excellent researchers at Ghent University. Two science parks foster innovative knowledge exchanges between university departments and private research companies: 2 accelerators (oriented towards biotech or ICT), 5 incubators (one for wide-range activities, for biotech, ICT, clean technology, and textile technology) and a top-tier computing facility enable research and its applications in Ghent University and in the region. The Tech Transfer office helps researchers to build a strong patent portfolio and establish industry partnerships.

Within UGent, two departments from the Faculty of Bioscience Engineering are involved in LUCRA. The Department of Biotechnology has expertise in bioprocess development and engineering and particularly in LUCRA will develop an integrated process of succinic acid production and separation using membrane electrolysis. The Department of Data Analysis and Mathematical Modelling will contribute to LUCRA by developing a model of the succinic acid production process and by using this model to suggest optimal process control strategies.

Role in the Project

In EU project LUCRA, UGENT excels in bioprocess development, particularly for simultaneous succinic acid production and separation using membrane electrolysis. Their capabilities extend to process monitoring and the development of a pilot plant control system. UGENT’s contributions are instrumental in advancing the project’s goals, ensuring efficient production and separation processes.


Ramon Ganigué