The first PHE Excellence Forum was held from 28th September – 1st October 2016, in Logarska Dolina, Slovenia. The forum brought together about 40 experts from 12 countries around Europe to discuss challenges facing the PHE sector in central and south eastern Europe (CSEE).
The event is a direct followup to the meetings of the PHE Excellence National Committees which were held between May and September 2016 in each of the participating countries of the project. The forum tackled four thematic areas (Alignment of PHE with regional, local and economic development strategies; Promotion of PHE in Responding to Skill Shortages; Organizing and Monitoring Student Placements in the World of Work; Personal Learning Environments in PHE) of the project where experts shared and identified national, regional and European challenges and later conducted a root case analysis, so as to understand the factors which lead to perpetuation of barriers.
The final observations from the seminar were that while PHE is a sector full of latent potential and the sector faces few active barriers, PHE is caught in a cycle of middle-expectations whereby it wishes to be considered a more important regional stakeholder, but is unwilling to take the lead in establishing its position without incentives and support. Another observation that was pointed out was that of insufficient recognition of the value of a ‘sector’ with its own ‘voice’ and that PHE misses (the tools for) a narrative.
In the coming weeks, a “Policy Challenge Statement”, will bring together all the work that was done at the event, highlighting the main challenges facing Professional Higher Education in the region, together with the root causes that need to be addressed to move forward on those challenges.
Following this, the project will begin a process of collection of good practices, so as to identify successful policy interventions which have been applied to address the identified challenges anywhere in the world, and assess the possibilities for adapting the approaches for use in the specific situation of the CSEE region.
The Hungarian National Stakeholder Committee for PHE Excellence held its first workshop in the framework of project PROCSEE with the participation of experts in higher education, experts from the world of work and delegates from universities, including universities of applied sciences. The workshop happened on 5th July and was organized by the Hungarian Rectors’ Conference.
Participants identified the challenges of the four thematic areas of PHE after vivid professional discussions, providing a basis for the National Priority Statement. Challenges determined in the workshop, composed the draft of the Statement that will be finalized by the end of this summer, and which ensures a huge range of topics for the work of Czech, Croatian, Slovenian, Romanian and Hungarian project experts, under the aegis of the enhancement of practice-oriented higher education in central and south east Europe.
As part of its efforts to create a regional centre for Professional Higher Education Excellence in central and south east Europe (CSEE), the PROCSEE project is looking for experts which will help it:
- Engage in policy dialogue with stakeholders, to understand the main policy challenges which need to be addressed to accelerate change & innovation in the area
- Locate best-practice examples of policy-interventions from around the world, which have been shown to be effective in addressing the identified challenges
- Analyse the best-practice examples, with the help of thematic peer-learning expert groups, and identify those which are best suited to implementation in the CSEE region
- Work with stakeholders in each country, to design interventions at institutional level which will address the policy challenges, based on the implemented research
- Communicate the need and methodology for the interventions to relevant policy & decision-makers, and provide a monitoring framework for measuring the progress and impact of interventions
We are looking for European-Level experts, as well as experts from Slovenia, Croatia, Czech Republic, Romania and Hungary in the following areas:
- Alignment of PHE with Regional Development Strategies (Download call)
- Promotion of PHE to respond to skill shortages (Download call)
- Organising and monitoring student placements in the world of work (Download call)
- Personal Learning Environments in PHE (Download call)
Experts are asked to send in their motivation and CVs, using the form below, until 27th May 2016.
Update: Call is now closed. In case of further queries, please contact info [at] procsee.eu.
The partners who conceived the PROCSEE project came together in Maribor from Malta, Czech Republic and Croatia on 6th and 7th November, to launch the project and prepare a plan of activities. From a thematic perspective, the project will tackle four areas of current policy-concern in Professional HE / Higher VET, namely:
- Alignment of PHE/HVET with regional/local development strategies
- Promotion of PHE/HVET as an alternative route through tertiary education, in particular to respond to skill shortages and increase employability of graduates
- Organising and monitoring student placements in the world of work, in particular increasing the quantity and quality of available student placements, so as to provide for meaningful learning experience and preparation for employment
- Use of Personal Learning Environments (personalised, flexible distance learning opportunities, delivered over the internet), and in particular their role in further education (both for purposes of re-training/re-qualification and enhancement of skills).
Operationally speaking, we aim to:
- Identify specific challenges in each of the 4 areas outlined above
- Use best-practice research to find appropriate policy drivers and tools to address the challenges
- Customise the approaches to the specific circumstances of countries and institutions in the CSEE region
- Validate the policy solutions through a programme of monitoring, impact assessment and evaluation
All the activities within PROCSEE will be developed with the context of a set methodology for problem identification and policy-response design, which will occur at a Regional Centre for PHE Excellence. In this respect, we plan to:
- Establish a regional centre for PHE Excellence
- Pilot the PROCSEE problem identification and policy-response design approach at the centre
- Recruit further institutions and countries to join the centre
In the next few months, the project will launch a first series of calls for experts to begin the policy development work, in preparation for a first policy forum to be held in Autumn 2016.