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Stefan Delplace
Stefan Delplace, Secretary General


Dear Reader

Innovation is high on the agenda(s) of the European organisations these days.

Last year there was the Leuven -Louvain-la-Neuve Communiqué of the Bologna Ministers of Education, and the European Commission's European Education & Training 2020 initiative for cooperation among EU member states in education and training, with benchmarks to achieve in 2020, and in 2010, the Europe 2020 Strategy, focusing on 'smart, sustainable and inclusive growth', and finally Youth on the Move, a flagship initiative focusing on youth and employment.

The whole strategic policy context of the European Union makes it apparent that education is badly needed, not just to realise the objectives, but also to bring part of the solutions.

The prevailing financial and economic crisis only increases the pressure on higher education, in spite of its budget cuts.

There is also the (new) focus on teaching by theEuropean Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), which gathers top research initiatives & experts to be able to compete on a global level.  

EURASHE will make a contribution to the EIT's  2010 Brussels forum early December, as "the field of higher education"  is now recognized as "an important cornerstone of the EIT Strategic Innovation Agenda (SIA)".

Higher Education needs to play a primary role in the innovation agenda of the European Union, on the level of stakeholders, national governments, and on the European level, and this requires that proper funding is channelled to the institutions and organisations that will have to ensure the promotion of innovation and its implementation.

President Barroso's plan to create a platform that will help stimulate 'Innovation' involving four DGs of the European Commission (DG Regional Policy, DG Digital Agenda, DG Research and Innovation, DG Industry and Entrepreneurship), which first have to agree on a budget line together, may not lead to an increase of applications of research unless it involves more closely the world of education, including professional higher education.

The contribution of professional higher education to the knowledge triangle, is essential for regional development, and European Universities of Applied Sciences, as members and partners of EURASHE play a key role in creating awareness among politicians, governments and employers in this respect.

The European Commission is preparing a new Communication on Universities 2011 to be released after the Danish Presidency of the European Union in Autumn 2011, in which a focus will be on an Innovation Union. An Open Consultation with all stakeholders is about to start, which will hold the attention of stakeholders' networks and associations like ours. 

With our 2011 Annual Conference we are going to to set the agenda for the necessary input from the part of professional higher education for the European 'innovation concept'.

This and yet many other interesting upcoming and past events you may want to read about in the brief news reports underneath.

Stefan Delplace


EURASHE 21st Annual Conference in Nice (France)

31 March - 1 April, 2011

Hosted by ADIUT-France and IUT de Nice

Research and Innovation in professionally oriented higher education programmes and institutions.

The EURASHE Annual Conference is the gateway to the international professional higher education scene. As one of Europe's leading higher education conference, it's the perfect time and place to meet with international professionals, introduce your institution to a diverse audience and connect with current trends in higher education.

The 21st EURASHE Conference will be held in Nice, France in 31 March - 1 April, 2011 at the Institut Universitaire de Technologie Nice in partnership with ADIUT-France.

The first main track is devoted to the contribution of professional higher education to regional development and applied research. "This year's conference is particularly important for professional higher education," said conference co-organizer and the Vice-President of l'ADIUT Philippe PIERROT. "The IUTs (Instituts Universitaires de Technologie), which form an integrated part of the university system, focus on the professionally oriented programmes in France. These technological and commercial tracks within the university system, contribute to regional development. One of the peculiarities of the IUTs is well-developed co-operation with other 'regions' in the world, such as Latin America, Africa and Asia. In addition to the growth in basic research activities related to professionally oriented programmes, we are also looking at the main features of 'professionally oriented mobility' outside the EHEA, with examples from the experience of the French IUTs, and other member associations of EURASHE, so as to give a varied picture of mobility in professional and vocational contexts. We would also like to underline the role which technological higher education plays in the policies of town and country planning and as tool mattering from accession in higher education for strata less favoured by society".


Over the next decade, European Professional Higher Education is expected to undergo a profound change because of the "Europe 2020 Strategy". The two tracks of the conference will provide the input for some of the topics in EURASHE's planned Bologna 2020 publication, based on "EURASHE's Ten Commitments for the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) in 2020 - Visions & Strategies".

In the second track the conference will also cover the topic of European Mobility in the global context, and the special role of professional Higher Education:  higher interest in applied research, synergies through innovative role of placements; factors and conditions influencing the mobility flows and the position of the individual institution on the global market.

In the margin of the conference, a 'mini-seminar' will offer to participating heads of institutions and of faculties, quality assurance coordinators and stakeholders in QA, the possibility to give their feedback on the "Implementation of the European Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance on an institutional level", an EU funded project.

For more information visit our website... 

"Embedding Professional Short-Cycle Higher Education in the (Higher) Education System", Budapest, Hungary, 20-21 January, 2011 (Co-organised by EURASHE)

 EURASHE will co-organise with the Hungarian Ministry of National Resources and Budapest Business School a Bologna seminar on the relevance of the intermediate qualifications, within a lifelong learning context.

The Bologna seminar intends to examine the current situation of professional Short Cycle Higher Education (SCHE) in the European Higher Education Area from various angles, and in this way contribute to an exchange of opinions and best practices and to the identification of the different perspectives.

The upcoming discussion on Short-Cycle Higher Education will offer to participants the opportunity to learn about a complex situation of SCHE throughout Europe, with a special focus on Hungary and views of key stakeholders - students and employers, and will provide insights into cases from the U.S.A. and Canada. The seminar will benefit from the first public presentation of the results and findings of a comparative cross-European survey on SCHE, which was run by EURASHE within the EU-funded project L5: Missing Link.

The registration form, details on the seminar programme and organisation is available at


5th European Quality Assurance Forum (EQAF): Stakeholders take stock of progress in QA and the European Standards and Guidelines.
 Hosted by University Claude Bernard Lyon I, Lyon, France, 18-20 November, 2010


 Lars Lynge Nielsen Last week the President of EURASHE Lars Lynge Nielsen was one of the contributors to the 5th European Quality Assurance Forum for Higher Education, which focused on the theme "Building Bridges: making sense of QA in European, national and institutional contexts", and also with a special emphasis on QA of Learning Outcomes. During three interactive days, the relationship between European and national policy decisions and the institutional and agency level realities were discussed.

460 higher education stakeholders from around 49 countries gathered in Lyon to discuss the latest developments and trends in quality assurance. Participants took stock of the progress made in external as well as internal quality assurance processes in past years. The forum concluded that a lot of progress has been made both in developing the processes as well as a creating a shared understanding among the stakeholders on what the guiding principles for quality assurance should be. Nevertheless, the speakers as well as the participant interventions underlined that QA processes - both external and internal - should remain 'a means to an end'. Quality assurance should continue as a tool used to develop the quality of institutional activities, and not become the goal itself.

The role of the Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area (ESG) in promoting the European dimension of quality assurance were also debated. While the ESGs clearly have structured the European QA discussion in recent years, some speakers suggested the guidelines needed to be revised. The concluding panel discussion involving the Presidents of the E4 Group (ENQA, ESU, EURASHE, EUA) however, outlined the need to evaluate how the ESGs have been implemented, for what purposes they are currently being used and to thoroughly analyze their strengths and weaknesses with respect to the purposes identified before undergoing revision. This issue is something the E4 group will be taking forward in the coming months.


EURASHE at the International Conference "Modernization of internal and external quality assurance system of higher education" in Kazakhstan, 19-21 November, 2010

Stefan Delplace took part in the International Conference "Modernization of internal and external quality assurance system of higher education" within the framework of the Tempus project CANQA - «Central Asian network of quality assurance and accreditation».

The event was held November 19-21, 2010 in Almaty, Republic of Kazakhstan. The representatives of the Ministries of Education and Science of the Republics of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan, their national experts of internal and external QA and officials from the countries' accreditation centers mixed with European experts from France, Belgium, Finland, Poland and Spain during the two and a half days of the conference, taking stock of the results of a two-year project implementation and discuss the work plans for the upcoming year.

The presentations and discussions during the conference focused on the work of the European QA and accreditation agencies, the impact of European policies on QA, new trends and tendencies in European QA on an institutional and national level, national policy and practice of external quality assurance and accreditation in the countries participating in the project, and the creation of national or regional centers of quality assurance and accreditation in Central Asia.

1 minute-Questionnaire on QUALITY ASSUARANCE SURVEY

Dear Colleagues

EURASHE is conducting a survey on how 'Standards and Guidelines for the Quality Assurance' have been implemented in the EHEA. In particular the evaluation aims to support the MAP ESG Project, a joint project of ENQA, EUA, ESU and EURASHE. With this survey we would like to get to know those who are interested to participate in it, and what would be the most convenient way to do it.

Click to take the Questionnaire  

Or else send an email to assistant@eurashe.euand you will be contacted later by our Secretariat. 

2010 - November Newsletter

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