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The European Higher Education Area in 2020

Bologna Process Implementation Report
Publisher: 
Publications Office of the European Union
City: 
Luxembourg
Category: 
Abstract: 
The history of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA), which this report aims to capture - at least in part - is one of extraordinary change. Following the signature of the Bologna Declaration in 1999, a first decade of preparation for the EHEA saw dramatic changes in higher education degree systems, quality assurance and internationalisation. These changes set higher education systems on a path in the same direction, but were contested and even resisted in many parts of Europe. This decade was followed by a period that focused on implementation processes that continues to the present. Despite the complexity of a process involving 48 countries, there have been many positive outcomes as the EHEA has transformed into a real rather than an imagined phenomenon. Its evolution in the future depends on the work that is undertaken now. Some basic facts are worth noting. Countries have continued to join the EHEA throughout the two decades, and student numbers have grown significantly in the vast majority of countries. Today, total student numbers have reached more than 38 million. Of these, the majority of students (56.4 %) are enrolled in first-cycle, bachelor-type study programmes that were viewed sceptically by many at the start of the Bologna Process. Although there are considerable variations between countries, overall public spending on tertiary education relative to GDP has a median value of 0.95 %. In most countries, this figure has either been stable or has decreased during the two decades. Thus, the increase in student demand has not been matched by expenditure on higher education.

Government at a Glance Latin America and the Caribbean 2020

Publisher: 
OECD Publishing
City: 
Paris
Category: 
Theme: 
Abstract: 
Latin American and Caribbean countries continue to face challenges in designing and enforcing public policies that promote good governance and inclusive societies. Along with difficult economic conditions, such setbacks to previous progress have spurred declining levels of trust in public institutions. In order to sustain inclusive growth, Latin American and Caribbean countries need to continue implementing public sector reforms that promote fairness for all.
Government at a Glance 2020: Latin America and the Caribbean presents internationally comparable indicators of public governance practices and reforms, showing how these reforms are implemented and what results they achieve. The indicators allow the benchmarking of best practices in the LAC region and against OECD countries and indicate areas that need attention and improvement if countries are to achieve outcomes such as increased trust in government.

Towards a 2030 Vision on the Future of Universities in Europe

Policy Report
Publisher: 
Publications Office of the European Union
City: 
Luxembourg
Category: 
Abstract: 
The study assignment, “Towards a 2030 Vision on the Future of Universities in Europe” was commissioned by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation (DG RTD). It was undertaken by the Centre for Strategy & Evaluation Services LLP (CSES), supported a team of high-level experts composed of academics and ex-academics. This study is an independent consultancy study report. The report required close consultation with key stakeholders as part of a participatory process. The Vision and transformation modules were developed in liaison with key stakeholders. Two stakeholder workshops took place in Brussels, followed by a validation webinar. There was then further consultation with key university networks. In addition, a Steering Group consisting of different Commission policy units from DG RTD and DG Education and Culture (DG EAC) actively guided and participated in the consultation process through four Steering Group meetings. Its members provided inputs to ensure that existing EU policy and programming initiatives were reflected, given the need to ensure that future EU support builds on current and previous support. Europe’s university landscape comprises more than 5000 universities, and is characterised by its heterogeneity. The Vision provides an enabling, non-prescriptive framework, which recognises the imperative of maintaining the autonomy of universities, and ensuring the principle of academic freedom. It also embodies the values provided in EU primary legislation, which will underpin the Vision’s implementation. Accordingly, the Vision – and the transformation modules that underpin it – need to be flexible enough to accommodate differences between universities. These include the degree of emphasis on their different missions (e.g. educational, teaching, research and innovation, societal), the extent of their existing contribution and future capacity to contribute to excellent science, and their different disciplinary and inter-disciplinary strengths. Reflecting this diversity, the Vision seeks to support universities and to enable them to autonomously determine their own developmental needs and pathways towards the achievement of the 2030 Vision. Given that the Vision covers a broad range of issues, challenges and opportunities for universities between now and 2030, an effort was made to build a consensus among stakeholders. However, whilst the analysis presented in the report has been closely informed by desk research, stakeholder events and feedback from the university networks, there are divergent viewpoints in some areas. This reflects different viewpoints among different types of universities in Europe and variance in the baseline situation in terms of how strong particular universities are in the research and innovation domain already, and what progress remains. As such, the study represents the authors’ best efforts to establish a degree of consensus on the main priorities for universities in Europe. In parallel with the publication of the revitalised 2020 ERA Communication (September 2020), this report is designed to provide inspiration for the development of an EU policy framework on the future of universities in the fields of research and innovation. The study therefore provides an important starting point to inform the policy debate on a possible follow-up Communication on the Future of Universities in Europe to 2030 in 2021. This could set out in greater detail how Europe might best support and further enable universities’ ongoing transformations, building on the section of the new ERA Communication which addresses this topic. The study team would like to thank all stakeholders for their active participation and engagement in the debate.

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