UQ and Denmark

Tackling the big questions of our universe

Long-standing links with Denmark span nearly every school and institute at UQ. Through partnership with some of the country's premier institutions, including the University of Copenhagen, Denmark Technical University, and the Niels Bohr Institute, researchers are finding solutions to some of the most critical issues of our time – on Earth and in space.

Fast facts


Danish students enrolled at UQ


Denmark-UQ co-publications


academic staff born in Denmark


research project collaborations


alumni in Denmark


agreements with 5 official partners

Fast facts show full-year 2017 data.



In the past 5 years, UQ has co-authored more than 400 publications with Danish researchers, largely in the areas of genetics and heredity, ecology, and environmental sciences. Our top co-publishing partners were the University of Copenhagen, Aarhus University, the Technical University of Denmark, and the University of Southern Denmark.

Research collaborations

In the past 5 years, UQ has collaborated with 10 Danish institutions on 17 research projects in diverse research areas such as quantum systems, biomedical imaging, shark genomics, spider venom for pain relief, transcranial electrical brain stimulation, the marsupial microbiome and lower back pain. Research partners include Aarhus University, the University of Copenhagen, and the Technical University of Denmark.

Research funding

Danish organisations, including the Leo Foundation, Oticon Foundation, Danfoss Drives, Zealand Pharma and Ida Institute, have contributed nearly A$1.3 million (6.2 million DKK) towards 11 UQ research projects in the past 5 years. Projects investigate a range of topics including patient care, paediatrics, preventing skin cancer, addressing the environmental impact of livestock waste and novel treatments for inflammatory bowel disease.

Danish students at UQ

In the past 5 years, more than 150 Danish students were enrolled in UQ degrees. Study Abroad and PhD studies are the most popular program choices.

Photo: Sarah Kvorning, from Denmark, snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef as part of the Australia's Marine Environment course

Sarah Kvorning, from Denmark, snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef as part of the Australia's Marine Environment course

Collaboration in action

To infinity and beyond

UQ and the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen (UoC) are advancing research in astronomy, physics, quantum mechanics, and nanotechnology. The Virtual Institute for Physics (VIP) builds on strong collaborations between the two institutions, which are both at the forefront of physics research, and promotes joint student training, student exchange, and a joint PhD program. Beyond the VIP, both institutes will support a nano-sabbatical program for academic staff, as well as joint conferences, workshops, and symposia. UQ's partnership with UoC has led to the discovery that supermassive black holes can be used to measure the acceleration of the universe.

UQ leadership: Professor Peter Høj

UQ's people-to-people links with Denmark extend through all levels of the organisation. Professor Peter Høj, born in Denmark, began as Vice-Chancellor and President of UQ in October 2012. Educated at the University of Copenhagen, he has a Master of Science in biochemistry and genetics, a PhD in photosynthesis, an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Copenhagen, and an Honorary Doctorate from the University of South Australia. Group of Eight (Go8) elected Professor Høj as its Chair for 2017. He is also a member of the Medical Research Future Fund Advisory Board and the edX University Advisory Board; Co-Deputy Chair of the Strengthened Export Controls Steering Group, a Queensland Plan Ambassador; and a senior consultant to Hanban in the Oceania Region.

Ground-breaking schizophrenia research

UQ Professor John McGrath (pictured) has won a prestigious international fellowship in the Niels Bohr Professorship Program in Denmark to continue his ground-breaking research into schizophrenia, for which he also received the Strömgren Medal. Professor McGrath, a psychiatrist and researcher with the Queensland Brain Institute and Director of the Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research, is dividing his time between Australia and Denmark while building a new program with colleagues at Aarhus University. This work includes investigating the link between schizophrenia and Vitamin D levels in 80,000 newborns. The Niels Bohr Professorship is funded by the Danish National Research Foundation

Denmark seeks UQ expertise on gestational diabetes

Mothers who develop diabetes during pregnancy will be the focus of a University of Queensland researcher’s work on a Visiting Professor Fellowship in Denmark. UQ Mater Clinical School’s Professor David McIntyre is one of two Australian researchers to receive a Danish Diabetes Academy fellowship in this round of awards. “I will be assisting in the development of consensus guidelines for the diagnosis and management of gestational diabetes in the Danish healthcare system,” Professor McIntyre said. The research is part of an international effort to harmonise and standardise diagnosis of gestational diabetes worldwide.

Extracting DNA from jaws

Preserved in museums and trophy collections, shark jaws constitute one of the world’s most abundant sources of DNA for retrospective genetic analysis. Until now, however, the genetic potential of these unique samples has remained largely unexplored. Technical University of Denmark (DTU) Professor Einar Eg Nielsen has collaborated with researchers from UQ's School of Biomedical Sciences (SMBS), School of Biological Sciences, and Centre for Brain Genomics with the purpose of extracting and applying DNA from shark jaws to describe historical changes in population distribution. Professor Nielsen was recently nominated for the title of Honorary Professor by SMBS.

Supporting families with special needs

The UQ-developed Triple P – Positive Parenting Program, is being rolled out in Denmark. Denmark's National Board of Social Services is funding a two-year pilot of the Stepping Stones Triple P program, which is specially tailored for parents of children with a disability. The initiative aims to improve parents’ emotional wellbeing by providing coping skills and strategies to help them teach their children new skills, to manage behaviour, and to guide development. So far, five Danish municipalities have collaborated, which will see about 20 social workers, psychologists, and practitioners in early years and social pedagogy deliver a range of parenting intervention seminars, group courses, and one-on-one training.

Student mobility

Student exchange

Denmark is a popular student exchange destination for UQ students. We have student exchange agreements with 3 universities in Denmark: the University of Copenhagen, Technical University of Denmark, and Copenhagen Business School. Under these agreements, 117 UQ students studied in Denmark and 159 Danish students studied at UQ in the past 5 years.

Global research degrees

We provide opportunities for research students to participate in international research collaboration. Like exchange programs, and study abroad opportunities, UQ's joint PhD agreement with the University of Copenhagen enables research students to build integral collaborations and international linkages early in their careers.


Building future business leaders

UQ's Faculty of Business, Economics and Law (BEL) has an official student exchange agreement with the Copenhagen Business School (CBS). The agreement allows UQ’s MBA students to undertake courses in CBS’s Master of Science program – and vice versa. Professor Lars Håkanson from CBS has also held a visiting appointment at UQ. 


UQ has more than 380 alumni in Denmark. Alumni from or living in the country include:

Senior Adviser, Human Rights and Development, the Danish Institute for Human Rights (Bachelor of Arts/Laws (Hons) 2008)
Professor, University of Copenhagen (Bachelor of Arts (Hons) 1992)