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Successes and Failures of the Bologna Process

Academic & Research
Wednesday, January 13, 2016, 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm

The CEU Higher Education Research Group (HERG)

cordially invites you to a public lecture on 

Successes and Failures of the Bologna Process

by Prof. Georg Winckler

Abstract: The Bologna Process operates at the European, national and institutional level. At the European level the process started in June 1999 with 29 countries as an intergovernmental process in which universities were expected “to respond promptly and positively”. Due to weak institutionalization, the agenda of the European Bologna Process was since early 2000s more and more driven by the EU Commission and by stakeholders. Since 2010, although the Process still consolidates, there has been a search for identity and concrete goals for the European process. At the national level, governments were, on one hand, willing to harmonize study architectures, but, on the other hand, used the Bologna Process to pursue specific national goals and to better control increasingly autonomous universities. At the university level, the implementation of the Bologna goals conflicted with Humboldtian ideas of Bildung, with the defense of existing study architectures and decision making structures, especially concerning the development of curricula and the recognition of studies abroad. All in all, the Bologna Process succeeded in harmonizing study architectures, in modularizing study programs and in developing a common measure for student-centered learning. However, the Bologna Process failed to strengthen the relationship between higher education and the labor markets and to come up with a clear vision on how Bachelor programs should be linked to programs at the Master level.

Georg Winckler is a Professor-Emeritus at University of Vienna, President of ERSTE Stiftung Supervisory Board, Member of the Supervisory Board Erste Bank der oesterreichischen Sparkassen AG, and Vice-President of the Supervisory Board of UNIQA Versicherungsverein Privatstiftung. Besides his involvement and extensive contribution in the economic sector, Dr. Winckler is a Member of the Board of Trustees of Educational Testing Service (ETS), Princeton, N.J., a Member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Humboldt Universität Berlin and Member of the University Board of Technische Universität Darmstadt. He was vice-president (2001-2005) and respectively president (2005-2009) of the European University Association (EUA), Rector of the University of Vienna (1999-2011), and Member of the European Research Advisory Board (2004-2012). Dr. Winckler’s work in the higher education sector focusses on the design of European research policies, the modernization agenda for European universities, the globalization of higher education, university rankings and on the innovation strategies of European universities.