A Little History ...
The feeling that there was something deeply wrong with the Educational Systems and their arrogant, dictatorial, sometimes despotic academic Institutions that had the power of life or death regarding the personal and professional future/fate of a human being, originated back in the early 1970s and even as far back as 1960.
The basic idea behind the Center began in the early 1980s and a first outline of what was going to become the forthcoming International Multidisciplinary Neuroscience Research Center (IMNRC) was sent to many. The first document to have been edited and distributed to the international scientific and medical community was in 1984. There was no real Center at the time. Just a project: the International Brain Research Project (I.B.R.P.) that was later sometimes called the I.B.R.C.
The project then became the International Neuroscience Research Project (I.N.R.P.), the objective being the creation of a Research Center that would enable the concrete applications of the Project.
The initiative rapidly became very successful and was encouraged by the UN Secretary General Peres de Cuellar in the late 1980s.
Unfortunately, creating a project on one's own - and worse: succeeding in this enterprise - without the help or signature of the Established Scientific and Medical Community was deeply resented and considered at the time as a Casus Belli in the utmost sense. The hate and jealousy generated by the success of the initiative was quite incredible, something that the national and international academic community would certainly prefer never to have to explain.
The IMNRC therefore became an officially legal and internationally recognised institution only in 2002.
The IMNRC is atypical and very avant-garde because it functions thanks to a vast international consortium, a worldwide web (or network) of collaborators. The IMNRC administrative and residential HQ located in Tervuren, near Brussels doesn't have any laboratories because it doesn't need them. Indeed, all the laboratory, medical, scientific and technological facilities are provided by the international consortium in their respective countries and locations. Instructions come from the IMNRC that monitors progress from afar. This kind of futuristic organisation would have not been possible without internet.
The IMNRC has a completely different vision of science and medicine (in fact of education and the global "World System") that has been for a long time (with a few exceptions) ignored by peers. Now, with the increasing recognition of the importance of a holistic multicultural integrated interdisciplinary approach to research and everyday life from personal and family concerns to world challenges, there has been a mindset change and a growing recognition of the IMNRC's activities. The belated "discovery" of the microbiome and the catastrophic management of the Covid-19 Pandemic are two vivid examples that highlighted the limits of our educational system and our civilisation's incapacity to deal with global complexity. Time to look elsewhere.
The IMNRC's objectives and philosophy are quite unique: not only do these have little in common with "conventional" (or traditional) Institutions/Universities but at the same time they seem to appeal to an increasing number of individual researchers in these establishments who feel it is maybe time to look elsewhere. Many aspire to work in an integrated interdisciplinary atmosphere and contribute to creating something completely new. Our members are such people: highly determined and not afraid of doing research between the conventions. The IMNRC forms part of the International University Network. In fact, it is one level above... IMNRC affiliation to traditional universities would make no sense. The IMNRC is thus independent and shall remain so.
The IMNRC's main interest has always been "understanding". What is the underlying mechanism that enables us to "understand" what lies without and within us? We soon realised the need to create a congress devoted to "understanding"... This congress was initially referred to as the International Multidisciplinary Neuroscience Research Congress. The term "Neuroscience" however was often misunderstood and many could not understand how any field outside this "neuro...field" could possibly have anything to do with the Neurosciences. Similarly, many thought that Neurosciences was exclusively related to neurology and/or psychiatry. Actually, the term neuroscience is deceptive because it cannot be dissociated from nutrition, the immune system, the vascular system, the endocrine system and epigenetics and should therefore be replaced by the Nutrineuroimmunovasculoendocrinoepigenetic (NNIVEE) system.
During a meeting on Science Meets Parliaments at the European Parliament in Brussels, the former President of the European Commission Professor Buzek wondered what was in common to both science and politics. I took the floor to suggest neuroscience. Indeed, were it not for neuroscience we wouldn’t be able to discuss science and politics in the first place. During another meeting at the Royal Belgian Academy of Science and Arts on the Constitution and Law where the audience mainly consisted of lawyers and judges, one turned to me politely wondering what a neuroscientist was doing attending their conference. I replied that were it not for the neurosciences, there wouldn't be any Constitution and Law to discuss in the first place.
The term neuroscience strictu sensu used in textbooks and by the neuroscience community lacked scope and became increasingly inappropriate for our needs. Since "our" use of neurosciences implicitly introduced the notion of dynamic interactive INTERFACES in everyday life, neuroscience was replaced by the more appropriate word: "interface". The computer you are using now would never have been assembled from its constituent parts (= interfaces) - and you (= the human being = also a complex network of interacting interfaces) would not be understanding what you are doing in front of this screen - were it not for the neuroscience interface...and the human being/computer interface. Yet if neuroscience seems to be a key interface, it is not the only interface in the cosmos that is itself an interface just like a human being is an interface. Interfaces are infinite, interconnected with and embedded in each other. Understand the "interface" and you understand the cosmos.
The International Multidisciplinary Neuroscience Research Congress was therefore renamed: International Multidisciplinary Interface Research Congress or IMIRC.
A full blown congress on interdisciplinarity- the International Multidisciplinary Interface Research Congress (IMIRC) during which the principles of the International Interface Research Center (IIRC) were to be presented - should have taken place ten years ago (2008) during the Chinese Olympic Games in Beijing, China. Unfortunately, this was blocked by the Barroso Team (and resented by China) – with strong pressure from conventional/traditional political and educational lobbies in Europe against any change because of the considerable politico-financial vested interests – that replaced the IIRC by the much beleaguered EIT (so-called Barroso’s baby) a very pale copy of the IIRC that is now (together with DG EAC) facing a charge of plagiarism. Please refer to European Commission appoints four new EIT governing board members. How Ugly Can You Get? and The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT): a Shocking Case of Plagiarism. I offered the Juncker Team the possibility to right a wrong by suggesting that the EIT (that offers nothing new) be (re)turned to the original IIRC (that does), a compromise that favours constructive exchanges instead of destructive confrontations.
Please refer to our Brochure. The present IMNRC asbl/vzw based in Flanders, Belgium is a private academic research institution- working on the very foundations of Education, completely rethinking the basic structure of the Educational System (from school to University/College) - that has acquired a strong international political and academic reputation in the field of capacity building. Capacity building can be understood in many different ways. The meaning we ascribe to Capacity Building is developing the human being’s potential to deal with the complexities of the challenges he/she is faced with in an ever changing world. Indeed, the issues we are faced with today have reached such a level of complexity that experts, academics, politicians and the citizens are getting completely out of their depth. Why? Because they are confronted with holistic multicultural integrated interdisciplinary challenges something that their education has not prepared them for. The existing educational system is not sufficiently powerful to enable us to deal with the complexities of the challenges we are faced with. We must turn to what we call the Education of Tomorrow that focuses its attention on the State of Mind (Mindset). The State of Mind (Mindset) determines the way you process - collect, assimilate, understand, articulate together - data, whatever the data. There is therefore the need to optimise the State of Mind (Mindset) for complex avant-garde holistic multicultural integrated interdisciplinary challenge processing. This is Interface Education for the Interface Mindset.
Our New Capacity Building Programme (NCBP) - with already 140 countries participating - blends together what we call the Education of Tomorrow, the Governance of Tomorrow, the Smart Cities of Tomorrow, the Science of Tomorrow and the Medicine of Tomorrow. The NCBP InfoWeek (260 delegations expected) shall prepare the first ever World Programme on World Society Well Being and Quality of life where the deliverable shall be a tool - sought for by everybody - to facilitate global coordinated multistakeholder collaboration worldwide, in other words setting up a New Global Governance Infrastructure (NGGI) facilitating coordinated collective citizen/institution collaboration on an equal footing with equal opportunities. Indeed we are faced with a global network of interconnected global challenges that can only be appropriately managed by first setting up a NGGI. This is becoming increasingly recognised and mainstream.
Colleagues often wonder how it is possible to master so many different fields at the same time because this would à priori require from five to perhaps more than twenty PhDs. The answer is Interface Educationwhere the very notion of unidisciplinarity is deleted because deceptive. For example, literature, politics, medicine, sciences, philosophy, religion, music, dancing, painting, sports, law, physics, linguistics, mathematics, human sciences, culture, artistic expression, etc… are all one and have no separate existence as such.
We offer training for three degrees: Bachelor in Interfaces (BI), Master in Interfaces (MI) that is conducive to the Doctorate in Interfaces (DI) that shall apply the Interface Assimilation Programme (IAP) for which advanced brain imaging technology is needed at the IIRC to develop our NNIVEE protocol (nutrineuroimmunovasculoendocrinoepigenetics) that explores human understanding and behaviour (i.e. how/why do we - our brain - “understand”?). I don't use the term cognitive neuroscience that I consider obsolete. An Honorary MI is under discussion and may be awarded to any partner of exceptional integrated interdisciplinary potential and talent who has fully integrated the notion of interfaces.
Interface Education is one of two sections of the Education of Tomorrow Program. The other is what we call Customised Interactive Software (CIS), a formidable interactive educational tool that shall replace schools/universities altogether in the medium/long term. There shall never be enough schools/universities to train soon 10 billion human beings. Furthermore, good pedagogues are a rare species...: sending your child to a school/university is no guarantee that she/he shall come out competent... CIS combines the two by adapting the material to be assimilated to the student’s own understanding grid from scratch to professional competence short-circuiting the university entirely. The status of schools and universities shall change. They shall still be useful for practical applications and as brainstorming hubs, but as structured today, they shall disappear. Needless to mention the considerable pressure against the worldwide development of such software.
The present IMNRC prefigures the futuristic educational and research center IIRC (International Interface Research Center) that shall deliver the DI and that is going to be discussed during the International Multidisciplinary Interface Research Congress (IMIRC). The IIRC shall enable a direct application of the IMIRC's final conclusions and other fundamental issues like:
This implies creating:
This requires access to highly integrated and sophisticated interdisciplinary programmes that shall enable the human being to deal with just about any challenge that he/she may be faced with. In record time.
The IIRC shall first be considered as a Test (Pilot) Site in country/island XYZ. It has no wish to become exclusive on this Planet. If considered successful, a network of such Centers may certainly be considered to replace more conventional educational/research establishments.
The IMNRC does not recognise and in fact rejects the Enic-Naric System (network) because despotic, obsolete and outdated; the Enric-Naric System (network) shall be replaced by the World Competence Audit (WCA). In other words the IMNRC does not recognise qualifications/degrees delivered by existing academic institutions. A PhD or MD does not qualify for a DI. On the other hand, a DI qualifies you for both and much more. The IMNRC promotes a fundamental educational revolution that shall replace the existing educational systems and their conventional outdated unidisciplinary or pseudo-interdisciplinary degrees (Doctorate, MD, PhD, Master, Bachelor; Candidate, Licence, ...) altogether. These credentials are simply too focussed and fragmented, therefore deceptive: quite inadequate to enable an integrated understanding of the Universe, therefore Planet Earth and ourselves. These qualifications are slowly but surely becoming obsolete and not all that useful anymore because ill suited to tackle challenges that are all inherently interdisciplinarily integrated in nature. This is also a warning: schools and universities must prepare the transition failing which there shall not only be serious economic consequences for all educational staff but also for all graduates whose outdated qualifications shall not be recognised anymore. A good way to prepare the transition would be to launch a CWIN on Education.
Indeed, what is a useful degree in 2020? A useful degree in 2020 is one that contributes actively and concretely to the 3rd Millennium's Top Priority: achieving and sustaining the citizens' well being and quality of life in world society, a highly complex integrated interdisciplinary challenge that education does not prepare us for. Please refer to the NewPOL Network Main Web Page for more information.
Our non-recognition of standard degrees is deeply resented by many. But the resentment should be directed at the Educational System that has formatted the student in intellectual straitjackets making the human being unable to deal with everyday challenges that are all inherently interdisciplinarily integrated. In fact every human being has far more potential than just his/her conventional academic qualifications...!
also bear in mind that degree recognition is an international problem by no
means restricted to the IMNRC. Some degrees in Country A are not recognised in
Country B. In some cases, examinations are requested to obtain an equivalence in
Country B. This is nothing new.
The trouble is that there is no real “equivalence examination” yet available to gain entrance to the IMNRC. This « examination » for the moment is essentially based on the originality of a candidate’s frame of mind, and on how he/she proposes to PRACTICALLY integrate his/her acquired knowledge in a more global perspective. In other words, selection is based on the candidate's apparent integrated interdisciplinary potential. Admission is no guarantee that a Member shall remain in the IMNRC-NewPOL Network, practical evidence of integrated interdisciplinary potential is required. From experience and generally speaking, it is NOT possible to work on integrated interdisciplinary challenges with people who have hardwired fragmented mindsets.