Partnerships and memberships

BFH is a member of various national and international organisations, networks and alliances.


We have been a member of the PIONEER Alliance since 2022. The alliance unites 10 European universities on one campus as part of the European Universities Initiative. The PIONEER Alliance has three objectives:

Die Grafik zeigt drei Ziele der PIONEER Alliance

With its thematic focus on “sustainable, resilient and safe cities and communities”, the PIONEER Alliance makes an inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable contribution to United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 11.

Students are provided European education and continuing education opportunities in this field that cover both content and the necessary competences.

Joint research projects between the alliance partners involving private and public stakeholders contribute to finding solutions to current challenges.


BeLEARN is the competence centre for digitalisation in education. The five founding universities (University of Bern, PHBern, Bern University of Applied Sciences, EPFL, EHB) receive funding from the Canton of Bern for cooperation projects in the areas of digital skills, digital tools and data science for education.

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Copernicus Alliance

The Copernicus Alliance represents a large network of European universities with a focus on transformative learning and education for sustainable development.

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Nature Positive Universities

In 2022, on the initiative of the UN Environment Programme and the University of Oxford, almost 120 universities around the globe have joined forces to form the global alliance «Nature Positive Universities».

These universities commit to taking measures to reduce their own ecological footprint and to make a contribution against the progressive loss of natural habitats.

saguf (Swiss Academic Society for Environmental Research and Ecology)

The saguf (Swiss Academic Society for Environmental Research and Ecology) is committed to inter- and transdisciplinary research in the field of environment and sustainability in Switzerland.

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swissuniversities is the common voice of the Swiss universities and promotes cooperation and coordination between the universities and the different types of higher education institutions.

Further information

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UNESCO Chair in Higher Education, Research and Innovation in Responsible Global Management

Bern University of Applied Sciences houses the UNESCO Chair in Responsible Global Management (RGM). A UNESCO Chair is an international network of higher-education institutions working with UNESCO. Through their collaborative efforts, the partners promote the advancement of academic knowledge and practical abilities in globally significant thematic domains.

Situation within BFH

The UNESCO Chair in RGM acts at an interschool level within BFH. Located at the Business School (Institute for Marketing & Global Management), it connects twelve universities. Six of them are in European countries (Switzerland, France, Romania, Denmark), and six others are in African countries (Morocco, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Kenya).

The UNESCO Chair aligns with the strategic thematic fields of BFH and Switzerland’s foreign policy – in particular, its MENA and Sub-Saharan Africa strategies.

There are around 950 UNESCO Chairs in 120 countries at present, eleven of which are in Switzerland. UNESCO Chairs contribute to intensified collaboration between institutions of higher education worldwide. They promote the exchange of knowledge and best practices with the aim of tackling global challenges and achieving UNESCO’s goals. The chairs focus on various topics which are congruent with the priorities and objectives of UNESCO.