EUA bilten 20 - 2011, EUA launches ‘Autonomy Scorecard’ report

Univerzitet u Banjoj LuciOpšte

EUA launches ‘Autonomy Scorecard’ report
EUA has this week published a major new report, which compares university autonomy across 26 European countries. In addition to an in-depth analysis of the current state of institutional autonomy in Europe, the study includes four scorecards which rank and rate higher education systems in four autonomy areas: organisational, financial, staffing and academic autonomy.

The report “University Autonomy in Europe II – The Scorecard” was launched on Tuesday evening at a special event held at the Musée BELvue in Brussels. Thomas Estermann, author of the study, presented the methodology and key findings to an audience of around 80 international higher education stakeholders.

He explained that the study, which is the outcome of a two-year project, had been designed to engage all higher education stakeholders in a more in-depth debate on autonomy in order to improve national higher education systems. Outlining the results, main findings and underlying trends in university autonomy, he pointed to those areas in which, from EUA’s perspective, universities need more freedom and flexibility.

His presentation was followed by a panel discussion between Adam Tyson, Head of Unit for Higher Education and Erasmus at the European Commission’s DG Education and Culture, Professor Paul de Knop, Rector at Vrije Universiteit Brussel, and Lesley Wilson, Secretary General of EUA.

Adam Tyson told the audience that EUA’s report would feed into the Commission’s policy work in the context of the Europe 2020 Strategy and provide concrete and detailed suggestions for the improvement of national regulatory frameworks. He also highlighted EUA's contribution to the peer learning activities organised as part of the intergovernmental dialogue on higher education governance. Professor de Knop pointed to the study’s value as a benchmarking tool for individual institutions. Reflecting on his own experience, he underlined that a lack of financial and staffing autonomy in a number of European higher education systems has already led to major competitive disadvantages in a global higher education landscape.

Participants also suggested that EUA’s work on institutional autonomy be taken further, by publishing regular updates and establishing potential correlations between autonomy and other concepts, such as performance, quality and successful income diversification, or through comparisons with other sectors.

The two-year Autonomy Scorecard project was supported by the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme and carried out in conjunction with EUA’s project partners, the German Rectors’ Conference, Universities Denmark, the Conference of Rectors of Academic Schools in Poland and the University of Jyväskylä, Finland. The national rectors’ conferences, EUA’s collective members, collaborated throughout the project.

The report, “University Autonomy in Europe II - The Scorecard”, can be downloaded here.

EUA is currently preparing an online tool that is scheduled to launch early in 2012. It will allow for a more interactive use of the rich data collected.

EUA is now on Twitter 

EUA has now launched a new platform to communicate with its members and other stakeholders – through an official Twitter channel. By following us at @euatweets users can find out the latest EUA news, follow events and other higher education news and participate in debates. Twitter also gives EUA the opportunity to follow other stakeholders’ tweets and current debates in HE and research.

To follow EUA, please visit EUA’s Twitter home page.

First Regional Integration Seminar of the ALFA PUENTES project shares experience on regional QA processes and qualifications frameworks  

Representatives of 17 Latin American and six European countries, including university associations and regional and national quality assurance agencies, contributed to the first Regional Integration Seminar of the ALFA PUENTES project in Lima, Peru, from 7 to 8 November 2011. Hosted by the Peruvian Rectors' Conference (ANR) and the Andean Community (CAN), this event examined regional level quality assurance and accreditation mechanisms both in Latin America and Europe, allowing university associations of the Andean Community to develop a more refined plan for sub-regional accreditation across Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile and Venezuela.

Report from 4th EUIMA - Collaborative Research Workshop, Politecnico di Torino, Italy (8-9 November 2011) 

The fourth workshop in the EUIMA - Collaborative Research project was hosted on 8 and 9 November 2011 by Politecnico di Torino, Italy. The workshop was held in association with the CESAER network and focussed especially on research collaborations involving universities of technology.

Reminder: EUA-CDE Workshop ‘Supporting Individual Paths of Doctoral Candidates - Experience, Skills, Guidance', Trinity College Dublin, Ireland (12-13 January 2012) 

This event will explore how institutions can support individual development of doctoral candidates by ensuring they have access to a wide range of research experiences and exposure to different environments, sufficient transferable skills training, and guidance tailored to individual needs. 

Commission lists priorities for 2012
The European Commission this week adopted its 2012 Work Programme, “Delivering European renewal", which highlights its priorities for the next year. The Programme and accompanying annexes include a number of initiatives which are planned in the area of higher education and research.