The Bologna Process And European Higher Education Identity in the 21 st century? El proceso Bolonia: hacia una identidad europea de la educación superior en el Siglo XXI?. Jussi Välimaa University of Jyväskylä, Finlandia. Themes of the Presentation. What is the Bologna Process?
The Bologna Process And European Higher Education Identity in the 21st century? El proceso Bolonia: hacia una identidad europea de la educación superior en el Siglo XXI?
University of Jyväskylä, Finlandia
What is the Bologna Process?
What is a European identity?
How these two are related?
=> Diversity more than unity
-a unified vision for European universities divided into Socialist and Western blocks
-aimed to define a common cultural ground for European universities
-declared by European university rectors
’Joint declaration on the harmonization of the architecture of the European higher education systems’
Ministers of Education (France, Germany, Italy, UK) declared that Europe was not only about economy but is also ’built upon the intellectual, cultural, social and techical dimensions of our continent’
Other European countries (31) wanted to join this declaration
The motives to join to the declaration: real reform needs => unwillingness to stay outside an important European process
A political declaration: …all its words were analyzed in great detail to avoid excessive embarrasment to any country … such a document is both remarkable and vague … each party having surely its own intentions in its country (Then Portuguese Minister of Education (Amaral & Veiga 2009, 135))
European Commission (EC) was left outside
5) The promotion of European co-operation in quality assurance => ‘a system of accreditation, certification or comparable procedures’ (Bergen 2003), => Standards & Guidelines in EHEA (2005) =>Quality Assurance Register for Higher Education (London 2007)
6) The promotion of the necessary European dimensions in higher education
+lifelong learning (Prague 2001), the social dimension (Bergen & London), third tier (Bergen)
31 => 46 signatory countries (2010) + one additional member (EC), 8 consultative members (students, business, universities; university staff excluded!) Council of Europe
Secretariat & Follow-up group
Bi-annual meetings: political forum for discussing the process & its objectives
Follow-up reports: Trends reports (by EUA), Stocktaking reports (national ministries of education), Bologna with Student Eyes (ESU). Problem: academic reliability?
Policy dialogue and cooperation partnership as new forms of communication and cooperation with USA, Latin American and Asia-Pacific countries.
The mains aims are: 1) to promote and enhance European higher education and its world-wide attractiveness and competitiveness, 2) to intensify policy dialogue, 3) to strengthen cooperation based on partnership, and 4) to further the recognition of qualifications …
Bologna action lines: Qualifications Framework /Three Cycle System; Mobility; Quality Assurance, Employability; EHEAin the global context; Joint Degrees; Recognition; Social Dimension; Lifelong Learning; Stocktaking and Bologna Beyond 2010
Politically the BP has been a success story: popularity; spread of 3-cycle structure; implementation of DS; ECTS helping student mobility ; European quality assurance systems; expanding continentally & globally
Solved practical problems at HEIs; Qualifications framework
Not coordinted or led by EU or EC, but come close to EU objectives & is supported financially by EC.
Nation States are unwilling to give away their sovereignty in education
National interpretations: each nation-state has used the BP for its own purposes
‘the reforms of national curricular systems were largely determined by the heritage of national higher education systems and the internal dynamics of their political processes’ (Witte 2009)
Opened new competitive horizons: without the deepening of the European perspectives in European universities the processes of globalization would have been slower
Post-modern Identity is fluid (Bauman)
Identity is a process of interaction with significant others: traditions (academic & national), professional groups (colleagues), friends & family …
Identity (& culture) may have many layers
Culture: “webs of significance where people simultaneously create and exist within culture” (Tierney & Rhoads 1993) – we are both the members and re-creators of our cultures
Pragmatic approach: what has happened with & in the interactions between academics, students, policy makers?
BP has intensified European cooperation & networking between HEIs European Universities Association (EUA), (European Rectors’ conference + Association of European Universities)
BP is one of the policy tools used by EC to reform European higher education
-1987-2008: 1 866 000 mobile students (4,2% of all European students) –numbers increasing, in 2008/09, 198 600 students
-average student: 22 years old, female (62%), stays 6,2 months abroad
According to empirical studies: students’ experiences are normally positive in terms of personal growth & comparative perspectives opened to one’s culture & HE system.
Most popular countries: Spain, France, Germany, UK
Most outgoing students: Germany, France, Spain, Italy; when compared with number of graduates: Greece, Italy, Hungary, Finland, Sweden.
Erasmus Mundus offered to global students
Erasmus program for university teachers (1997)
Year 2007/2008: more than 190 000 teachers participated (about 2% of academic staff)
Most active countries in outgoing teachers: Czech Republic, Finland, Liechtenstein
Mobility programmes major supporter of temporary student & staff mobility
Motivated by the aim to create European identity, not to make money (cf. USA, UK, Australia)
The follow-up structures of BP provide a European forum to discuss Higher Education as a European level phenomenon
Institutional cooperation & departmental level international cooperation serves practical research & teaching needs
Cooperation on Qualifications framework bring unity to European HE
Nature of changes/reforms interactive rather than hierarchical (see Bleiklie et al. 2000)
BP has broadened cooperation & interaction between HEIs & academics in Europe => increased European understanding in EHEA
Student mobility is broadening young Europeans perspectives on Europe
Academic identities influenced by increased European cooperation in research and teaching
BP as policy forum to discuss the development of Europe as a social entity
BP is not the only factor influencing European identity of higher education
European Research Area & research bids (like FP7) have increased cooperation between academics (partnerships)
Knowledge economy pressures to create innovations: reformed European universities as crucial actors –EU2020 Strategy
European academic networks intensified & growing more influential : peer power!
Identity may have many layers: European, national, academic, gender, ethnicity …
European cooperation has increased on all levels of higher education
Cultural change is process which can not be managed, but it can initiated & influenced … European layer of higher education identities is supported & strengthening (?)
But, where are European public intellectuals?