In Banja Luka, from 7-10 March 2016. the project's 1.1 activity "Analysis of current situation about internationalization and recognition mechanisms" was realized. The meeting was organized first day in the capacities of Government of Republika Srpska (administration center) and second day at the University of Business studies. Total of 27 participants from 15 different project partners were participated to the meeting. Detail list of institutions and participants is shown at picture bellow. Only representatives of University of Bihac didn’t attend to the meeting because of justifiable reasons.
On the first day, all participants were registered on time, but the meeting start was late for 30 minutes because of technical problems with equipment (computer and projector) of Ministry of education and culture of Republika Srpska.
The meeting was officially opened by Jelena Starcevic - senior associate of Ministry for Education and Culture of Republika Srpska and officially nominated member of the project team by Ministry, who welcomed participants and emphasized hers satisfaction with organization of the meeting. Assistant Minister for Higher Education of Republic of Srpska Radmila Pejic welcomed participants again on behalf of Ministry’s office and stressed the importance of this meeting for higher education institutions generally and with defined themes: internationalization and recognition mechanisms. Representative of the project coordinator KU Leuven prof. dr Andre Govaert greeted participants and announced officially start of the academic part of the project that should decompose the project’s themes internationalization and recognition mechanisms on the components. Prof. dr Dejan Bokonjic welcomed participants on behalf of the national coordinator and introduced agenda for both working days. After these introducing and welcoming words, Nenad Markovic was introduced participants with work package 1 explaining especially the objective of this activity and all other activities within this work package. He emphasized that the project was late 3 months because officially first meeting was organized at the end of the January 2016, not at the end of October 2015 when it should be organized. Also he explained that the main aim of this activity 1.1 is exchange of experiences and good practices with EU partners and particularly review of current situation at all partner institution related to internationalization and recognition mechanisms.
In accordance with the agenda after welcomed words and work package explanation, the keynote presentations were followed. In this part of the agenda presenters were prof. dr Andre Govaert, prof. dr Florin Ioras, prof. dr Monica Vieira and prof. dr Dejan Bokonjić. Prof. dr Andre Govaert presented internationalization in higher education where he provided few definitions of internationalization in HE, criticism, benefits, history, reasons of introducing (mobility, recognition, curricular reform, transnational education, marketing and promotion) and possible ways of improving of internationalization at higher education institutions. Prof. dr Florin Ioras presented recent conceptualizations of internationalization and implications for practice. He presented some facts about internationalization, new conceptualization of the international university, new conceptualization the international curriculum, challenges, lessons from the lived experience of international students, internationalization framework, dimensions of internationalization, internationalizing through informal learning, embedding global social responsibility and fostering intercultural engagement. Prof. dr Monica Vieira presented international strategic partnership and within it concept of comprehensive internationalization, EAIE study, its methodology and results. Prof. dr Dejan Bokonjić presented mobility strategy 2020 for EHEA, definition and importance of internationalization, 10 key developments in HE strategies, strategies for internationalization, insufficient funding, increasing privatization, effects of globalization, growing competition, regionalization, rising numbers, insufficient data, new trends, future directions, directives, obstacles and recommendations.
During the coffee break, press conference was organized with a lot number of present media organizations. Statements for media organizations were given by prof. dr Andre Govaert (project coordinator KU Leuven), prof. dr Dejan Bokonjic (national coordinator University of East Sarajevo) and MA Jelena Starčević (host Ministry of Education and Culture of Republika Srpska). Through this way all relevant media in Bosnia and Herzegovina informed about this project, key consequences on higher education in B&H and especially on students and teaching staff.
The meeting was continued with presentations all public universities regarding analysis of current state in internationalization. Before meeting, project and national coordinator established the minimum elements that each project partner has to present. So, each university presented existence of policy of internationalization and possible goals of internationalization, existence of internationalization’s strategy, existence of controlling measures for strategy and goals, responsibilities for internationalization, sources of financing, key activities of international office, available capacities for internationalization activities, existence of key performance indicators for internationalization, existence of study programs and courses in English language, organizations of summer schools, existence of rules for mobility students and staff, international research projects, contracts of international cooperation, international published work papers and impacts on internationalization. Analysis of University of Zenica presented by prof. dr Malik Čabaravdić, analysis of University of Tuzla presented by Alma Tanović, MPhil, analysis of University of Sarajevo presented by Mirnes Ibrić, analysis of University of Mostar presented by prof. dr Izabela Dankić, analysis of University of East Sarajevo presented by prof. dr Dejan Bokonjić, analysis of University of Dzemal Bijedić Mostar presented by prof. dr Nina Bijedić, and analysis of University of Banja Luka presented by MA Jelena Rožić. Only situation at University of Bihać hasn’t shown because of absence of their representatives. On this way, the analysis of public higher education about internationalization was done. Through these presentations all important elements about internationalization through functioning of public universities in B&H were presented.
After coffee break, presentations were continued. Firstly, representatives of ministries presented situation with internationalization in Federation B&H and in Republika Srpska. Both ministries had task to present existence and analysis of internationalization policy, strategy, goals, sources of financing internationalization, key activities of ministries and international sector, key performance indicators, international programs and impact of internationalization. The situation in Ministry of Education and Culture of Republika Srpska was presented by Radmila Pejić, and situation in Federal Ministry of Education and Science was presented by Zlatan Buljko.
Immediately after, representatives of HE accreditation Agency of Republika Srpska (RSHEAA) and Agency for Development of HE and QA B&H (HEA) were presented evidences related to criteria of international cooperation during conducted process of external evaluation. Also, strengths and weaknesses of accredited institutions were presented in the area of internationalization. Duška Radmanović presented situation on behalf of RS HEAA, and Maja Macan on behalf of HEA. They emphasized lack of internationalization strategies, lack of financial support, lack of courses and study programs in English or some other language, insufficient number of competent staff for internationalization, insufficiently developed mobility of staff and students, poorly developed international cooperation offices, lack of access to international journals databases, as key problems public and private higher education institutions faced with.
Then, representatives of EU partners presented the same things as B&H partners related to internationalization and recognition mechanisms. Prof. dr Andre Govaert presented situation on behalf of KU Leuven, prof. dr Florin Ioras presented situation on behalf of Buckinghamshire New University and prof. dr Monica Vieira presented situation on behalf of Politecnico do Porto.
After lunch break, project partners continued in accordance with the schedule. MA Jelena Starčević from Ministry of Education and Culture Republika Srpska, as an expert in recognition area, presented Recognition of Qualifications within EHEA – a new trend in a globalized world. She presented definition of recognition, legislation base for recognition in the EHEA, main principles of the LRC, implementation of the LRC, ENIC-NARIC networks, its purpose, the way of working and main obstacles for recognition and mobility. After this presentation, MA Jelena Starčević from Ministry of Education and Culture Republika Srpska and Dženan Omanović from the Centre for Information and Recognition of Qualifications in Higher Education presented Recognition of Foreign Qualifications and Implementation of the Lisbon Recognition Convention in Bosnia and Herzegovina. They presented constitution of Bosnia and Herzegovina, framework law on HE of B&H, access to higher education, composition of the HE in B&H, types of HEI, recognition procedures – Republika Srpska, professional recognition, rules, recognition criteria, recognition procedures in Federation of B&H and all cantons, Brčko District of B&H, obstacles, problems and general recommendations.
After these presentations, all universities presented their situations in the recognition area. All universities presented current situation with employed persons at universities, valid structure, procedure of academic recognition at university and faculty level, internal regulation, bodies who carrying academic and professional recognition, applicants documentation, criteria of evaluation of qualification, recognition of non-formal and informal learning, cooperation with ERIC NARIC network. Analysis of University of Zenica presented by prof. dr Malik Čabaravdić, analysis of University of Tuzla presented by Merima Baraković, MPhil, analysis of University of Sarajevo presented by Berina Smajlović, analysis of University of Mostar presented by doc. dr Ana Dujmović, analysis of University of East Sarajevo presented by Nenad Marković, analysis of University of Dzemal Bijedić Mostar presented by Mirsada Behran, and analysis of University of Banja Luka presented by prof. dr Valerija Šaula. Only situation at University of Bihać hasn’t shown because of absence of their representatives.
At the end of the first day all participant agreed that current situation in the area of internationalization and recognition mechanisms in Bosnia and Herzegovina higher education is presented in detail by all public universities, ministries and state agencies. All partners provided a clear overview of the current situation in terms of qualitative and quantitative measures on the state of internationalization and recognition mechanisms. Beside detail presentation the emphasis was on the exchange of experiences and good practices with EU partners. Through this first day an initial comparative analysis between the project partners was made.
The second day of the meeting was organized in the capacities of University of Business studies. The meeting was started with presentation of Tourist board of Banja Luka prof. dr Ostoja Barašin. In 20 minutes presentation he presented city in detail, touristic offers, important projects, international cooperation, cultural attractions etc. Immediately after this presentation the Project Consortium Board meeting was started. At the kick off meeting held in Gent in January 2016 all necessary managing documents were presented and accepted by the project partners. During this meeting in Banja Luka the emphasis was on presentation all important elements that partnership agreement will have. Focus was on travel costs, costs of stay, equipment costs, and subcontracting costs. Project coordinator offered to the project participants two models of financing of travel and costs of stay – on the institutional account of on the private accounts with previously provided rector’s or responsible vice rector’s confirmation. Equipment and subcontracting costs will be subject transferring on the institutional account. Project coordinator informed participants that all project partners will have to do declaration which will be entrance for paying travel costs and costs of stay for the kick off meeting held in Gent 24-27 January 2016. After submitting this declaration the project coordinator will send partnership agreement to all project partners and after signing, this agreement will be the basis for future project functioning. Project partners discussed about possible equipment and some partners propose that they would like instead of book, to procure access to some international research database that is accepted by the project consortium because the project intention is to equip everything what is really needed to each university. Nenad Markovic, UES, presented internationalization glossary that will be published at the project’s web page. He presented also the situation with real incurred cost during 2 held meetings for each participant individually.
After coffee break the Executive board meeting was organized. Leader of WP6, IPP, prof. dr Monica Vieira presented satisfaction of project partners with the kick off meeting in accordance with electronic evaluation survey established at the kick off meeting. Nenad Markovic, UES, presented risk management plan and key risk events in accordance with evaluation by project partners done at the kick off meeting in January 2016. Also, the strategy for each risk event is orally presented, as the sense of managing with the project application. Nenad Marković presented the project’s web page in detail with all accompanied documents and information.
Prof. dr Dejan Bokonjić presented current situation with realization of tasks from the kick off meeting.
After coffee break project partners started with working in small groups. One group discussed about questionnaire for recognition mechanisms and other group discussed about questionnaire for internationalization (students and institution). After discussion in small groups conclusion was that 2 groups will be formed, one for creation questionnaire for recognition mechanisms and second one for creation questionnaire for internationalization of students and institutions. First group is consisted of RSHEAA as work package leader, CIP, MPKRS and UNSA, and second group is consisted of RSHEAA as work package leader, UBL, UNMO and UNZE. Project partners agreed that one questionnaire will be created for detail analysis of recognition mechanisms of B&H project partners, second one will be done for evaluation of students about internationalization and recognition mechanisms, and third one for the
Tasks for the next period: evaluation of this meeting organized in Banja Luka through standard electronic evaluation form, glossary for recognition of qualification, publish evaluation of kick off meeting at the university web page, add in communication management plan title of the project web page stint-project.net, each university will have to specify which equipment and books would like to procure, to do VAT exemption to European delegation in B&H, declaration about choosing payment method for the kick off meeting by all B&H project partners, signing of partnership agreement by all project partners, quality policy statement has to be signed by all project partners together with partnership agreement, project manager Geert De Lepeleer has to send to national coordinator all presentation from Brussels meeting of all European project coordinators, connect Facebook STINT web page with the project web page, all partners have to publish news about this meeting at their institution’s web page, all logo by all partners have to be positioned at the end of the project’s web page, publish internationalization glossary at the project web page, formal appointment for the participation in the project by all project partners, do internationalization report for Europe.
All presentations are available at the project’s web page (1.1. Analysis of current situation about internationalization and recognition mechanisms).
The indicators of progress are reflected in the number of participants (participant list – project coordinator), the number of presentations held (29), and the number/quality of the final report (published at the project web page). Dissemination of this meeting was done during the press conference held during first coffee break of the first day of the meeting in the capacities of the Government of Republika Srpska. Also, dissemination was done through publishing the news about meeting at the project partners’ web page.
STINT project coordinator
STINT national coordinator