The European Higher Education Area
Between Critical Reflections and Future Policies
Editors: Curaj, A., Matei, L., Pricopie, R., Salmi, J., Scott, P. (2015)
Bridging the gap between higher education research and policy making was always a challenge, but the recent calls for more evidence-based policies have opened a window of unprecedented opportunity for researchers to bring more contributions to shaping the future of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA).
Encouraged by the success of the 2011 first edition, Romania and Armenia have organised a 2nd edition of the Future of Higher Education – Bologna Process Researchers’ Conference (FOHE-BPRC 2) in November 2014, with the support of the Italian Presidency of the European Union and as part of the official EHEA agenda. Reuniting over 170 researchers from more than 30 countries, the event was a forum to debate the trends and challenges faced by higher education today and look at the future of European cooperation in higher education.
As a result, the two research volumes offer unique insights regarding the state of affairs of European higher education and research, as well as forward-looking policy proposals. More than 50 articles focus on essential themes in higher education: Internationalization of higher education; Financing and governance; Excellence and the diversification of missions; Teaching, learning and student engagement; Equity and the social dimension of higher education; Education, research and innovation; Quality assurance, The impacts of the Bologna Process on the EHEA and beyond and Evidence-based policies in higher education.
“The Bologna process was launched at a time of great optimism about the future of the European project – to which, of course, the reform of higher education across the continent has made a major contribution. Today, for the present, that optimism has faded as economic troubles have accumulated in the Euro-zone, political tensions have been increased on issues such as immigration and armed conflict has broken out in Ukraine. There is clearly a risk that, against this troubled background, the Bologna process itself may falter. There are already signs that it has been downgraded in some countries with evidence of political withdrawal. All the more reason for the voice of higher education researchers to be heard. Since the first conference they have established themselves as powerful stakeholders in the development of the EHEA, who are helping to maintain the momentum of the Bologna process. Their pivotal role has been strengthened by the second Bucharest conference.” Peter Scott, Institute of Education, London (General Rapporteur of the FOHE-BPRC first edition)
Mergers and Alliances in Higher Education
International Practice and Emerging Opportunities
Editors: Curaj, A., Georghiou, L., Harper, J.C., Polak, E.E. (2015)
This volume casts light on mergers and alliances in higher education by examining developments of this type in different countries. It combines the direct experiences of those at the heart of such transformations, university leaders and senior officials responsible for higher education policy, with expert analysts of the systems concerned.
Higher education in Europe faces a series of major challenges. The economic crisis has accelerated expectations of an increased role in addressing economic and societal challenges while at the same time putting pressure on available finances. Broader trends such as shifting student demographics and expectations, globalization and mobility and new ways of working with business have contributed to these increased pressures. In the light of these trends there have been moves, both from national or regional agencies and from individual institutions to respond by combining resources, either through collaborative arrangements or more fundamentally through mergers between two or more universities.
After an introductory chapter by the editors which establishes the context for mergers and alliances, the book falls into two main parts. Part 1 takes a national or regional perspective to give some sense of the historical context, the wider drivers and the importance of these developments in these cases. Included are both systemic accounts (for countries as France, Sweden, Romania, Russia, Wales and England), and specific cross-cutting initiatives including a major facility at Magurele in Romania and a Spanish programme for promoting international campuses of excellence. Part 2 is built from specific cases of universities, either in mergers or alliances, with examples from different countries (such as France, UK, Romania, Spain, Germany, Denmark, Finland, Switzerland). A concluding chapter by the editors assesses these experiences and indicates the implications and future needs for understanding in this domain.
Higher Education Reforms in Romania
Between the Bologna Process and National Challenges
Editors: Curaj, A., Deca, L., Polak, E.E., Salmi, J. (2015)
Romania is an active player in various international higher education areas, while undergoing a series of higher education reforms within its national framework
“The Higher Education Evidence Based Policy Making: a necessary premise for progress in Romania” project was implemented by the Executive Agency for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding (UEFISCDI) in the timeframe February 2012 – February 2014, being co-financed by the European Social Fund through the Operational Programme “Administrative Capacity Development”. The project aimed to increase the capacity of public administration for evidence-based policy making in the field of higher education, while focusing on good practices at international level and impact assessment. With the contribution of the national and international experts, the project has generated a number of analysis and studies on the existing higher education public policies (quality assurance, internationalization, equity, data collection, the Bologna Process, financing of higher education).
Based on the results of the project, the book will reunite a number of policy research articles which would tap into the innovative aspects of the project’s activities and provide a concise overview of what good practices can be drawn from the empirical research conducted in this project. The book will therefore aim to improve the information on Romanian higher education reforms, as well as on the concrete evidence-based policy proposals which could be transformed into future policy solutions in the Romanian higher education system.
European Higher Education at the Crossroads
Between the Bologna Process and National Reforms
Editors: Curaj, A., Scott, P., Vlasceanu, L., Wilson, L. (2012)
Romania hosted the 2012 Bologna / European Higher Education Area Ministerial Conference and the Third Bologna Policy Forum. In preparation for these meetings, The Executive Agency for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding (UEFISCDI) organized the Future of Higher Education – Bologna Process Researchers’ Conference (FOHE-BPRC) in Bucharest on 17-19 October 2011, with the support of the European University Association (EUA) and the Romanian National Committee for UNESCO. The conference brought the voices of researchers into international-level policy making in higher education. The results of the conference are presented in this book.
Until now, empirical evidence supporting policies and reforms in higher education has often been a matter of local or regional focus. The development of a pan-European process in higher education policy drives a need to explore wider research topics on which to base policies. This book offers an unprecedented opportunity for higher education researchers to interact and contribute to the political process shaping the European Higher Education Area (EHEA), and to national policy agendas in more than 100 participant countries for the 2012 ministerial events.
The book collects more than 50 articles focusing on vital issues in European higher education. These are arranged in sections addressing the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) Principles; Teaching and Learning; Quality Assurance; Mobility; Higher Education Governance in the EHEA; Funding of Higher Education; Diversification of Higher Education Missions; Higher Education Futures and Foresight.
A Strategic Approach for Intellectual Capital Management in European Universities
Guidelines for Implementation
Editors: Leitner, K.H, Curaj, A. (2014)
“It is twenty years that we are discussing the concept and the applications of Intellectual Capital. Finally, a book that adapts, insightfully analyses and implements the management and control of this crucial resource in the most appropriate context which creates and drives the Intellectual Capital of future generations, i.e. that of Universities. I consider this a significant and practically useful contribution towards a more self-conscious and better managed knowledge society.” Prof. Stefano Zambon, University of Ferrara, Italy
“This report provides tried and tested examples of good practice, as well as useful guidelines for successful Intellectual Capital Management.” Campbell Warden, IAC Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, Tenerife
European universities have been immersed during the last decades in important transformation processes aiming to make them more autonomous, economically efficient and competitive. They have to demonstrate professional resource management and accountability in support of clearly defined and feasible goals, even more important during periods of financial crisis and budget cuts.
From a managerial perspective, Intellectual Capital (IC) management and reporting can contribute to making the best use of available resources. In the realm of practice, an increasing number of universities and research centres in Europe have developed IC management and reporting models. Learning from the different national and international good practice examples, experiences and research findings, this Guideline – developed in the course of three Mutual Learning Workshops (MLWs) co-organized by UEFISCDI and the Chair – sought to discuss between researchers, practitioners, managers and policy-makers how to best implement and run IC managing and reporting at Universities in Europe considering the national contexts and current reforms of the university system. As such, the aim of this guideline is to:
- provide a better understanding of what IC reporting means in improving the quality of a Higher Education system,
- establish a tailored methodology (Guidelines) able to help the elaboration of IC reporting in universities, and
- draft public policy proposals for the policymakers interested in IC Management in the Knowledge Society.
Although initially developed with Romanian universities in mind, this blueprint is for universities in different European countries in different development stages. The assumption of this Guideline is that the design and implementation of an IC management system is contingent on the specific context of a university, its development paths and the willingness of the president and management to govern and manage a university strategically. Accordingly, the authors propose a flexible and modular IC management system influenced by the idea of so-called “maturity models”. Thereby, they address different types of universities (public, private, small, large, specialised, universal) in their different development stages.
The Guideline is structured as follows: Chapter ’Scope and aims of Intellectual Capital management and reporting’ describes the background, scope and aims of IC management and reporting. Chapter ’International practices for Intellectual Capital management and reporting’ summarises some projects, initiatives from IC management and reporting in selected countries. In addition, experiences and lessons from this exercise have been exploited within the MLW for drafting this Guideline. In Chapter ’Designing an Intellectual Capital management system’ we propose a framework, guiding principles and methods for designing and implementing an IC management system
considering the specific environment and development path. Each IC management system usually defines and uses some specific indicators; how to define and select indicators is addressed in Chapter ’Definition of indicators: standardization versus diversity’. A summary for a quick orientation of university managers and HE policy makers aiming to implement or support the implementation of an IC management system
is presented in Chapter ’Summary and Conclusions’.
Designing the Landscape of the Intellectual Capital of a Nation
Editor: Koch, G. (2014)
“It is the first time that a pilot report on knowledge regions has been professionally compiled in one of the countries of the Danube Region, which is a European model region. It is an excellent example of what I would appreciate to be applied to other European countries as well.” Dr. Erhard Busek, former Vice-Chancellor of Austria and Head of the Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe, Austria
“As the chairman of an organization annually granting an award for best profiled knowledge municipalities I highly appreciate this publication aiming at promoting methods of characterizing knowledge regions. Job well done!” Prof. Francisco Javier Carrillo Gamboa, Monterrey Institute of Technology, President of the World Capital Institute, Mexico
“Since more than a decade scientists in urban development are searching for best methods to define what a knowledge city or region is. Our European colleagues took the courage to compose a report on this question. Congratulations!” Associate Professor Tan Yigitcanlar, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
In the frame of the Project “Quality Assurance in Higher Education through Habilitation and Auditing” imlemented by UEFISCDI and co-funded by the European Social Fund through Sectoral Operation Programme for Human Resources Development 2007-2013, a series of Mutual Learning Workshops (MLWs) has been co-organised with the support of the Chair as a mean to bring together international experts and practitioners aiming to draft a Blueprint for Intellectual Capital Reporting for nations and regions.
This blueprint is the result of the expert group’s (the authors) work during 2012-2013, and should be read as a background paper for organizing future IC-related exercises at national and regional level, relevant for the Romanian context but also for the European countries.