EQUNET/CEPS Sympósion 2010


Ljubljana, November 23-24, 2010

Achieving true equity within Higher Education, despite being high on the education policy agenda for years, continues to remain a significant challenge for policy makers, who, despite years of initiatives, have not yet managed to make large enough inroads into the problem. To this end, two consortia researching the topic – the EQUNET consortium bringing together 8 partners from 6 EU countries, and the DEP project team have decided to merge efforts to create a one-of-a-kind instrument to synthesise the current debate and suggest ways forward.

The EQUNET/CEPS Symposion is a think-tank style event, which will bring together researchers from both the projects together with the leading academics in the field for an intensive 3-day signature event intended to consider visionary and innovative policies to deal with the equity gap, and get away from the staid iterative and gradual process that has characterised EU policymaking and left millions stranded without better life-opportunities.

The themes of the meeting have been chosen by the visionaries themselves, in line with their views of the most pressing problems and the most effective solutions, with a format which will allow 6-8 ideas to be presented over the 3 days, with each idea needing to face the test of an expert audience, but also with the ability to be enhanced and matured by the audience, and for a few select ideas, to be further examined in detail by the research projects sponsoring the event.

Rather than a one-off event, the meeting will form the basis of a series of actions on equity – networking these experts together to form a joint consensus and joint voice on how to meet the challenges of Higher Education today. To this end, the networks will sustain a private social community amongst these researchers and experts, and will further tap their knowledge and expertise through participation in a DELPHI study being sponsored by the EQUNET network.

The results and recommendations, together with presentations from all participants on their chosen themes and challenges will be made available publicly after the event.


Sympósion Proceedings
Participants’ List


Presentation Abstracts:

The topics are divided into three themes, each with several speakers:

Theme 1: Conceptualising Equity for Policymaking

How is equity in higher education understood?
Zdenko Kodelja, Educational Research Institute, Ljubljana
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Theory of practice, mixed methods research and the development of social sensitivity accreditation in HE
Karin Doolan, Institute for Social Research in Zagreb
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Segmentation in HE – a frequently overlooked form of the reproduction of inequality
Slavko Gaber & Veronika Tašner, CEPS, University of Ljubljana
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Theme 2: Universal Higher Education, diversity, society and equity

Contradictory functions in Higher Education’s contribution to social equity
John Brenan, CHERI, The Open University, London
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Degrees, Jobs and Status in Society – the tension between Meritocracy and Euality
Ulrich Teichler, INCHER, Universität Kassel
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University – a Stairway to Heaven and the Graveyard of Hopes
Voldemar Tomusk, International Higher Education Support Program, Open Society Foundations, London

Who gets a degree? Access to tertiary education in Europe 1950-2009
Aleš Bartušek, Education Policy Centre, Faculty of Education, Charles University
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Theme 3: Equity in Higher Education systems, mechanisms and financing

Return-based contributions to finance higher education – a temporary graduate tax
Dieter Dohmen, FiBS Berlin
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Strategies for ensuring Equitable Access to HE for immigrant groups
Leon Cremonini, CHEPS, University of Twente
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