In the framework of the project “European Integration in Higher Education and Research in the Western Balkans”, three independent research projects have started during year. Two of them are conducted as part of a PhD programme at the University of Zagreb - Faculty of Political Sciences, while one of them is a post-doctoral project organized by the Department of Educational Research at the University of Oslo.
The projects will address different aspects of the Europeanisation of the higher education in the region. PhD student Nina Branković is looking into the cooperation between business and higher education sector in Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, focusing on the obstacles, potentials and benefits for inclusion of employers and enterprises into the higher education systems of these countries. Nina questions whether the EU accession process plays a role in the strengthening of the interaction between higher education institutions and industry/employers and whether the identified state of affairs can be identified across the countries in the focus.
Nikola Baketa, also a PhD student at the same programme, in a somewhat similar fashion, looks into the effects of the supra-national level policy initiatives, yet he focuses on the policy processes related to the reform of the cycle system and analyse the actual status of the first tier (Bachelor). Nikola has taken seven Croatian universities as his case and he will use them to look at the system-level authority, employers and higher education institutions in order to identify their approach and role in the implementation and recognition of the newly established Bachelor studies.
Finally, a post-doc project, Antigoni Papadimitriou addresses the issue of quality assurance in higher education in the Western Balkans. By assuming a comparative approach and combining several data-collection techniques, Antigoni seeks to identify various institutional initiatives and practices that can enhance the quality of the higher education in all the countries in the region. Among others, the project seeks to identify quality policies and practices and accreditation procedures in Western Balkans universities, as well whether any differences in perceptions of these issues can be found between private and public universities.
Click here to read more about Nikola’s and Nina’s project.
Click here to read more about Antigoni’s project.