EUA : European University Association

A very Happy New Year from everyone at EUA!

Highlights for 2008

University of Barcelona
University of Barcelona

It looks set to be another busy year in the world of international higher education and another packed year for EUA. Here is just a small selection of events and other activities to look forward to in 2008:

Dates for your diary

- 7-8 February 2008, EUA Experts Conference: Towards Financially Sustainable Higher Education Institutions, Brussels;

- 27-29 March 2008,  EUA Spring Conference hosted by the University of Barcelona, Spain: The Governance of European Universities post 2010 (II): Enhancing Institutional Mission and Profiles;

- 23-25 October 2008 – EUA Autumn Conference hosted by the University of Rotterdam, Netherlands: Inclusive and responsive universities - ensuring Europe’s competitiveness in the knowledge society;

- 20-22 November 2008 – 3rd Quality Assurance Forum hosted by the Corvinus University (Budapest), Hungary.

The Institutional Evaluation Programme (IEP)
The IEP continues to be one of EUA’s flagship activities. The evaluations support institutional development by looking at the institution’s strategic capacity to adapt to a changing environment.  In addition to responding to 14 individual institutions’ requests, the IEP will continue its evaluation in Portugal with a sample of ten institutions (a mixture of public and private universities and polytechnics). The two-year evaluation project in Slovakia will conclude in 2008 with a seminar that will gather higher education institutional leaders and other actors to discuss a report assessing the national research capacity.

The Programme, which is managed independently by its own Steering Committee, will undergo a review that will be concluded in 2009.

Research & Innovation

EUA will continue to represent universities in policy fora at European level by: contributing to the further development and implementation of the EC’s Framework programmes, strengthening dialogue with the ERC Scientific Council, and providing further input to the creation of the new European Institute of Technology. It will also participate the in key DG Research ad hoc groups, in particular in relation to researcher careers, philanthropic funding of research, and the “Green Paper” on the future of the European Research Area. EUA will also follow-up on the results of the December 2007 (Lisbon, Portugal) Conference on the “Responsible Partnering” guidelines promoting good practices in university/enterprise collaboration.

In 2008, EUA will also publish the report on the findings of the DOC-CAREERS project which has explored the relations between doctoral training, career development and employability prospects for young scientists entering non-academic professions.

Bologna Process and building the European Higher Education Area

EUA’s Lisbon Declaration sets out a series of policy goals and action required on the part of universities and governments. In addition to representing universities in key policy fora (notably the Bologna Follow Up Group), EUA will begin to prepare the university view on the future development and direction of the Bologna Process post 2010, and continue to edit the successful Bologna Handbook. Following last month’s meeting with the French Prime Minister, EUA will look to establish a Lifelong Learning Charter for Europe’s Universities.

EUA has also been successful in securing funds through Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme to launch a new project exploring the evolution of Master degrees in European universities.

Quality enhancement/the European dimension of quality
EUA will continue to underpin universities’ efforts to develop, embed and mainstream an internal quality culture that fits their respective institutional mission and objectives thus supporting the development of creative and innovative institutions. Following the success of the first two Quality Assurance Forums, the European Commission has agreed to fund a third Forum, organised by EUA on behalf of the E4 group. The 2008 QA Forum will be held on 20-22 November 2008 at the Corvinus University (Budapest) and will focus on international trends in QA.

Internationalisation of European higher education and research

Europe’s universities function in an increasingly competitive global environment. The Lisbon Convention in March 2007 confirmed the enormous interest of EUA members in building strategies and structures for international cooperation, exchange and research collaboration. Specific projects for 2008 include the publication of a new Internationalisation Handbook together with Raabe publishers and the continuation of the Transatlantic Dialogue series with the American Council on Education (ACE) and the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC). The next meeting, scheduled to take place in June 2008 (in Vancouver, Canada), will focus on cooperation and competition.

Register now for EUA Spring Conference (27-29 March 2008)

EUA is delighted to announce that registration is now open for the Spring Conference to be held at the University of Barcelona, Spain from the 27-29 March 2008.

The Barcelona Conference – entitled the Governance of European Universities Post 2010 (II): Enhancing Institutional Mission and Profiles - will continue the debate from the EUA conference in Wroclaw on the crucial issue of institutional and system governance in Europe. During the meeting, participants will examine the policies and strategies being pursued by higher education institutions and European, regional or national authorities to improve the effectiveness of increasingly diverse higher education institutions and systems.  

Visit the conference website for more information on the programme and speakers.

Register before the 11th February to take advantage of the early bird rate.

EUA Employment Opportunity: Senior Programme Manager (Quality Assurance)

EUA is looking for a highly motivated and experienced professional to join its Quality Unit at a senior level.

The main activities of the unit are threefold: policy development, programme management, in particular of EUA’s flagship Institutional Evaluation Programme, and project implementation in the field of quality enhancement and quality assurance.  

The successful candidate should be both interested in and have a sound knowledge and experience of the topic.

Principle Responsibilities

The role of the Senior Programme Manager – reporting to the Head of the Quality Unit - includes:

  • Major operational responsibility for the implementation of the annual cycle of the Institutional Evaluation Programme (IEP), including follow-up with universities and partners and the preparation of steering committee and other relevant meetings;
  • Contributing to project development and implementation, including the management of grant proposals and contracts, the preparation of reports and relevant publications;
  • Developing information material as required (e.g., EUA web site, newsletters and publications as appropriate);
  • Contributing to EUA policy, statutory meetings and representing the organisation at relevant QA related conferences and events;
  • Supervising the work of two Project Officers.

This is a demanding role at a senior level that requires experience in the relevant field as well as organisational talent, people skills and a strong interest in the development of higher education in Europe.

Therefore you will need to demonstrate:

  • At least 10 years relevant experience, preferably managing evaluation processes in a university or a QA agency, following on from an advanced university degree;
  • Experience of working in a multi-cultural and multilingual environment;
  • Experience in team management and excellent organisational skills, including capacity to draft in English;
  • Ability to work both independently and as part of a team, against tight deadlines and in a very complex international environment.

The Association based in Brussels offers a long term contract under Belgian law and an attractive package of benefits including lunch vouchers, a medical insurance and a pension scheme.

Suitably qualified individuals interested in gaining experience in a fast-moving higher education policy arena are invited to submit their CV and cover letter to Isabelle Damman at the following email address: by the 31st of January 2008.

EUA regrets that we are not able to acknowledge all applications received. However, selected candidates will be invited for an interview in the first half of February 2008.

Dubrovnik Recommendations call for action to improve higher education governance

A major conference held in October 2007 has now published ambitious recommendations aiming to speed up institutional reform and regional cooperation in South East Europe within the context of the European Higher Education Area.

The Dubrovnik Conference on higher education reform, organised by the universities of Zagreb (Croatia), Novi Sad (Serbia) and Vienna (Austria), was strongly supported by EUA.

The text of recommendations emphasises that it is now high time to implement, rather than talk about, concrete priorities. Among the most significant actions, they call for support from governments, institutions and international partner organisations:

  • To organise summer schools and other educational activities for university and ministry administrators to professionalise the management of higher education;
  • To establish a Regional Research Fund for early stage researchers using a competitive funding model as an incentive in the creation of attractive regional centres of excellence;
  • To encourage mobility for students, researchers and professors through providing incentives for cooperation, joint programmes, and academic networking;
  • To ensure that every national and regional inter-university meeting includes students as members of delegations;
  • To rethink the role of governments in providing incentives for higher education reform, integrating universities into single legal entities and encouraging trust in institutions.