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Jeanick Brisswalter, new president of the University of Côte d'Azur


Jeanick Brisswalter, a specialist in sports ergonomics, neuroscience and psychophysiology, is the new president of the Université Côte d'Azur. ©Service communication-Univ Côte d'AzurThere were big changes for the Université Côte d'Azur this year. A massive re-hauling of the multiple schools between Nice and Cannes now fall under the UCA title. Along with this conglomeration, a new president was elected to bring the university to international recognition.  

Jeanick Brisswalter, 60, was elected on 9 January by the board of directors with 31 votes out of 38 (7 abstentions). He takes over from Jean-Marc Gambaudo, who at the head of the ComUE had prepared for the birth of this new UCA.

On the first of January 2020, UCA replaced the Université Nice Sophia and the ComUE (Community of Universities and Institutions) and now includes major players in research and higher education.

Dubbed the ‘university of the new millennium,’ Brisswalter’s goal is to build an integrated university that is internationally recognised, research-intensive and participates in the dynamic growth of its territory. Driven by the ‘Idex UCA Jedi project,’ he has a mandate to position UCA as a major player in the Côte d'Azur region and as an internationally recognized university bringing all of its missions to the highest level.

The policy Brisswwalter will implement is based on four main pillars, in line with the ComUE :

  • Strengthening the links between research, innovation and valorisation, in order to develop the scientific potential of Université Côte d'Azur, which is based on disciplinary and transdisciplinary excellence, and innovation.
  • To position Université Côte d'Azur as a major player in the development of the Côte d'Azur territory, with strong links to the local, national and international ecosystem.
  • Promote training of excellence for students and professionals, to provide them with the knowledge and skills they need to be actors in solving the complex problems of today's world.
  • To develop university life, within the new perimeter of Université Côte d'Azur, with a view to improving working conditions and life on campus, to boost the latter through culture and sport, to (re)value local heritage and to promote all actions that enable the various players in the university community to engage in their profession and to flourish.

In a January interview with Nice Matin, Mr Brisswalter said that he wants UCA to be known abroad—to have their researchers work abroad, to welcome international students to study here and French students to be proud to attend UCA. He also highlighted the Bastide Rouge project in Cannes (inaugurated 14 Feb) for UCA’s new 'EUR Creates' graduate programme in creative arts.

Brisswalter said he will surround himself with a competent team of mission leaders who will facilitate these goals. 

UCA President's Bio

Jeanick Brisswalter has been a university professor since 1996. After a doctorate in physiology at the Laboratory of Adaptive Physiology of Paris V, specialising in exercise physiology applied to high-level sport, he began his career as a researcher at the National Institute of Sport, Expertise and Performance (INSEP). He then joined the Université́ of Poitiers in 1994; then Université́ de Toulon in 1999, where he headed the sports ergonomics laboratory, before joining Université́ Nice Sophia Antipolis in 2010, where he created and chaired the "Human Motricity, Sport Health Expertise" Laboratory (LAMHESS).

His research work has focused on the management of substrates during exercise and the relationship with brain function in application with high-performance sport or ageing. He has published numerous international papers in the fields of exercise physiology, neuroscience and psychophysiology. He is an expert on several national and international organizations and assessment committees in the fields of life and health sciences, public health and sport science.

He was Dean of the Faculty of Sport Sciences from 2014 to 2016, when he took over as Vice President of the Research Commission of the University of Nice Sophia Antipolis and Vice President Research of the CoMue University Côte d'Azur.