Each member has a respectable research-oriented profile and is the largest producer of engineering and science graduates in its own country. One of the IDEA League's main ambitions is to re-establish Europe as a technological and scientific leader by bundling academic resources and knowledge. The term IDEA comes from the first letter of each of the founding institutions.
Imperial College London confirmed its decision to withdraw from the IDEA League with effect from December 2012. At the end of 2013, Paris Tech left the IDEA League because the university was restructuring in connection with the newly created Paris-Saclay campus.
Currently, three schools of the members of the alliance offer a Joint Masters in Applied Geophysics, where students spend one semester at each university (Delft University of Technology, ETH Zürich and RWTH Aachen University), then spend the fourth semester doing their thesis at one of the schools or in industry. The programme builds on the strengths and the complementary expertise in Earth Science at the three universities. It offers a combination of study and research. During the program students can specialize in either hydrocarbon exploration and management or environmental and engineering investigations, including geothermal energy exploration and management, and will also receive a solid background in the other speciality.
Students of the IDEA League universities are represented by IDEALiStiC.