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Third Bologna Process Researchers’ Conference highlights crucial role of university governance

14 December 2017

The conference, which was organised in Bucharest, Romania, on 27-29 November, is part of the European Higher Education Area official calendar of events and conferences, promoting and sustaining the development of EHEA. It aims at providing a unique forum for dialogue between researchers, experts and policy makers in the field of higher education. The conference brought together higher education researchers ahead of the Bologna Process Ministerial Conference to be held in Paris in May 2018.

The conference distinguished five main topics, underlining the different dimensions of the process. Papers presented in the conference addressed the ‘social’ and ‘external’ dimensions of the process, future developments for transparency tools as well as financing and governance. Finally, the conference tackled the open question of the future and possible avenues for the Bologna Process.

Governance was a focus of discussions, in which EUA Secretary General Lesley Wilson took part. Indeed, EHEA Ministers committed in 2012 to intensify the policy dialogue on both financing and governance of higher education. Liviu Matei, Provost of the Central European University, Budapest, coordinated the governance strand of the conference, in a political context particularly challenging for university autonomy. EUA presented papers on its latest work on university autonomy and funding in Europe. In particular, it described the state of play of efficiency measures in university management, exploring barriers, enablers and limitations. The first paper presented draws on the work carried out in the framework of the ongoing USTREAM project. In a second paper prepared for the conference, EUA further analysed data collected for its Autonomy Scorecard 2017 update in relation to university governance structures, focusing on the representativeness and membership of governing bodies of universities throughout Europe.

The papers will be published in 2018 in a dedicated volume. The papers presented for the first two editions of the conference were released in two collections of research articles that framed the research development on topics of high interest for advancing international cooperation in the field of higher education and further evidence-basing the EHEA.

The conference was organised by the Romanian Executive Agency for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Funding, together with the National University of Political Science and Public Administration, the Romanian Ministry of National Education and the Ministry of Research and Innovation.

More information

European University Association (EUA)

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