EUA : European University Association

European Quality Assurance Forum: Call for Papers and New Publication

The third European Quality Assurance Forum will take place on 20 - 22 November 2008 at Corvinus University in Budapest, Hungary.

EUA members are invited to send papers analysing internal quality developments in their institutions. The deadline is 31 July 2008 and the call for papers is available through the EUA website

EUA is also pleased to announce the launch of a new publication: “Implementing and Using Quality Assurance: Strategy and Practice”, which gathers contributions from the Second European Quality Assurance Forum that took place in November last year.

The second Forum, organised by the E4 group (EUA, ENQA, EURASHE and ESU) and hosted by Sapienza Università di Roma (15-17 November 2007), gathered together more than 500 academics and experts in quality assurance. This new publication assembles keynote presentations and a few of the many excellent papers that contributed to lively discussions at the event. The keynotes discuss quality from a conceptual, historical and policy perspective, while papers are mostly focused on institutional case studies and show the variety of ways that higher education institutions and QA agencies ensure quality.

Download the publication.

Please click here to find out more about the third European Quality Assurance Forum call for papers.

EUA makes progress on Lifelong Learning Charter

On December 14th 2007, EUA President Georg Winckler gratefully accepted the invitation of French Prime Minister François Fillon to develop a European University Charter on lifelong learning, seeing this as a timely initiative to assist Europe’s universities in developing lifelong learning strategies as a central pillar of the Europe of Knowledge.

EUA has now begun a process of consultation with European networks and organisations with specific interests in lifelong learning, including employers organisations, academic trade unions, students, guidance and counselling professionals, and university networks with specific interests in continuing education, adult education and distance learning. These partner organisations met in Brussels on 15 April and made swift progress in agreeing fundamental principles and key points for the Charter. The group notably agreed that the Charter should:

  • Provide a broad framework for universities to develop their specific contribution to the overall objectives of lifelong learning; 
  • Promote the importance of flexible learning pathways for individual learners, and thus contribute to academic, professional and social progress;
  • Stress the importance of the considerable work that is already undertaken in institutions to widen participation and offer alternative, non traditional routes to higher education qualifications;
  • Specify the roles and responsibilities of European and national public authorities, as well as regional partners, employers and universities in addressing current obstacles to high quality and more diversified higher education provision for Europe’s citizens.

The Charter will be discussed by the EUA Council at its meeting in July. It will then be taken forward to the EUA autumn Conference on inclusive and responsive universities, which will be hosted by the Erasmus University Rotterdam from October 23 – 25. The Charter will hopefully be approved by EUA member universities as a key policy text for the years ahead.

New EU Activities Announced on Follow-Up to the ERA “Green Paper”

The EU has now published the final results of the public consultation on the Green Paper "The European Research Area (ERA): New Perspectives” to which EUA responded last September.

The report, which draws on more than 1,000 responses, outlines the main concerns of the key research actors across Europe, including those of EUA members, which include careers and mobility, international co-operation, research infrastructures, joint programming and knowledge sharing.

The Commission said the consultation had shown the original ERA objectives remain valid and relevant, but that action was needed on the key issues raised by the ERA Green Paper. It now plans five new specific initiatives that will be launched in the coming months. These initiatives will address in particular:

  • The management of intellectual property by public research organisations (recommendation adopted on 10 April 2008)
  • The promotion of mobility and careers of Europe's researchers
  • The legal framework for pan-European research infrastructures
  • Joint programming and programmes and
  • International science and technology cooperation.

These key issues reflect those presented by Dr Isi Saragossi (EC, DG Research) at the EUA Council meeting on 26 March 2008 in Barcelona. In addition, the Commission has set in train the publication of the reports of the seven “Expert Groups” established to address the key issues raised in the ERA Green Paper”. Expert Group reports published so far include that on “Strengthening research institutions with a focus on university-based research” which was chaired by Professor Christina Ullenius (EUA Vice-President).

The fundamental role of universities in the ERA was also underlined at an informal meeting of EU research ministers in Slovenia last month. Stressing that Europe now needs to develop a common vision and a better political governance of ERA, Ministers underlined this should feature modern universities and research organisations developing globally competitive poles and networks to deliver science and technology and with an optimal mix of specialisation and variety.

EUA will prepare a new position paper responding to these follow-up reports arising from the ERA “Green Paper” consultation to be published later this year.

Click here for more information about the ERA consultation.

Read EUA’s response to the Green Paper Consultation (September 2007)

EUA participation in Expert Group on Entrepreneurship in Higher Education

EUA has participated as an observer in the European Commission’s Expert Group on ‘entrepreneurship in higher education, especially within non-business studies’.

The Commission’s directorate on Enterprise and Industry has now published the final report, which is now to be complemented by a quantitative survey of entrepreneurship studies provision.

This is currently being carried out by the Danish consultancy NIRAS, which hopes to get EUA members to respond. If you are interested in taking part, please contact Astrid Marie Berg of NIRAS at ASB@remove-this.niraskon.dk.

European Parliament report on Bologna Process and student mobility

Member of European Parliament, Doris Pack, this week presented a draft report on the Bologna process and student mobility to Parliament’s Committee on Culture and Education.

The publication of her report, which includes a motion for a European Parliament resolution and analyses various aspects of student mobility within the framework of the Bologna process, follows a special Bologna process hearing held in Brussels in March.

The future of the Bologna Process post 2010 and some the concerns raised by the report will be addressed at a special seminar in Ghent later this month and an extraordinary meeting of the Bologna Follow Up Group. EUA will be actively involved in all of these debates in the coming months.

Read the full report

EUA Job Opportunities - Senior Programme Manager (Secretary to the EUA Council for Doctoral Education) and Project Officer (Research and Innovation Unit)

EUA is currently looking for two highly motivated professionals to join the Association in Brussels:

  • A Senior Programme Manager to join its Research and Innovation Unit to be responsible for the implementation of the policies and activities of the newly established (2008) EUA Council for Doctoral Education (CDE).
  • A Project Officer within the EUA Research and Innovation Unit to implement projects and activities on the role of universities as catalysts for regional development with the overall aim of strengthening the input of Europe’s universities as stakeholders in the policy dialogue on enhancing the development of Europe as a competitive global region.

Please click here for more information on both job profiles and how to apply.