The Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) is to establish a permanent base in the canton of Valais, with 11 chairs of research and teaching.
In collaboration with the cantonal government, EPFL, one of the leading centres of research in the country, plans to have the new entity up and running in Sion by 2015.
The centre will specialise in energy, health and chemistry under the academic supervision of Lausanne. The budget is estimated at SFr14 million ($14.8 million) a year, divided between the canton, EPFL and private partners.
Teaching will be a focal point of the new entity, according to EPFL president Patrick Aebischer. “It won’t be a case of limiting ourselves to research – all the professors will have to teach,” he said, adding that Masters projects would also be developed.
The canton of Valais is hoping the academic centre will stimulate industry and job creation and make the region more attractive as a business location.
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