HERE Annual Conference 2018

Capacity building for higher education reform: The impact of collaborative international projects


12-13, December 2018

Address: Piazzale Aldo Moro 5 - 00185 Rome (main campus of Sapienza)

Rome, Italy



11 December



9:30 am – 5pm  Optional pre-event hosted by SAPIENZA-UNIROMA: “Sapienza in International Development: Strategies Projects Initiatives (HERE are invited to attend at own cost – registration will be conducted separately from the HERE conference). Check out the programme here

Adress: Aula Magna - Piazzale Aldo Moro 5. Rectorate Building of Sapienza


16:00 – 17:30  Meeting of HERE Advisory Group and SPHERE Team

Address: Piazzale Aldo Moro 5. Rectorate Building of Sapienza


17:30 – 19:00  Speaker briefing session (for speakers and chairs only)

Address: Piazzale Aldo Moro 5. Rectorate Building of Sapienza


18:00 - 19:00. Set-up of poster displays at venue 

Address: Piazzale Aldo Moro 5. Rectorate Building of Sapienza


19:00   Opening reception, hosted by UNIROMA

Address: Piazzale Aldo Moro 5. Rectorate Building of Sapienza




12 December

Address: Aula Magna

Piazzale Aldo Moro 5

Rectorate Building of Sapienza.



8:45.   Registration


9:30.    Welcome speeches

  • Emanuela Del Re, Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Italy
  • José Guttierez, Head of Sector,  Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA), European Commission
  • Eugenio Gaudio, Rector, UNIROMA


10:00.  Opening Address: Capacity building through higher education international cooperation: Perspectives from the EU  

  • Claire Morel, Head of Unit – International Cooperation, European Commission, Directorate-General for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture (EAC)


Panel: Capacity building from the perspective from EU and HERE countries

Institutional and national speakers, actively involved in capacity building initiatives from a strategic level. The session is designed as an interactive panel with framing questions.

  • Michael Horig, Head of Division, Strategic Planning, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)
  • Emanuela Del Re, Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Italy
  • Hani Helal, Faculty of Engineering, Cairo University, Egypt
  • Aida Duric, Ministry of Civil Affairs, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Chair: Elizabeth Colucci, EUA/SPHERE Team


11:30. Coffee


12:00. HERE activities 2017 and 2018: Overview of results

  • Anne Spangemacher, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA), European Comission
  • Elizabeth Colucci, EUA/SPHERE Team


12:30. Plenary 1: Capacity building projects and Bologna Process implementation

Presentation: Outcomes of the 2018 Bologna Ministerial conference and the peer learning approach – Michael Gaebel, SPHERE Team/EUA

Panel of HERE representatives (2 Bologna signatory countries and one non-signatory country)- speaking about how capacity building projects contribute to a) national and institutional reforms b) to the Bologna Process, in particular) . The panel will start with 8 minutes presentations and be followed by questions on transversal issues that will later be discussed in break-out groups.

  • Marina Crnčić Sokol, Head of Unit for Strategy and Development of Higher Education, Ministry of Science and Education, Croatia (Bologna Expert)
  • Nadejda Velisco, Head, Department for policies in Higher Education, Ministry of Education, Culture and Research of the Republic of Moldova
  • Svetlana Sirmbard, Rector, University of Adam, Kyrgyzstan

Chair: Michael Gaebel, EUA/SPHERE Team


13:30.  Lunch


14:30.    Parallel round tables: Capacity building projects and the implementation of major policy and reform goals at institutional and national level

Participants sign up in advance, according to projects that they could share on the topic at hand or themes they are particularly interested in. During the session, the chairs will provide structured questions and draw out specific examples from participants. The discussion will also address needs for and modes for capacity building in the specific thematic areas and how international projects could contribute. Chairs also serve as rapporteurs that report to general rapporter after the session.


  • Group 1: Recognition and qualifications frameworks

Chair/facilitator: Declan Kennedy, University College Cork, Ireland


  • Group 2: Quality assurance reform

Chair/ facilitator: Rafael Llavori, Director for International Cooperation, Spanish National Accreditation Agency (ANECA)


  • Group 3: Mobility

Chair/ facilitator: Romina Kniaz, University of Bologna (UNIBO), Italy


  • Group 4: Teaching and learning reform

Chair/ facilitator: Michael Gaebel, Director of Higher Education Policy, EUA/SPHERE Team


15:45. Coffee


16:15.   Plenary 2: Capacity building projects and autonomy and governance reform

Panel with presentations from different regions, including one EU speaker (15 min. each)

  • Enora Pruvot, Deputy Director, Governance, Funding and Public Policy Development, EUA 
  • Ketevan Gurchiani, Associate Professor, Ilia State University, Georgia/HERE Advisory Group
  • Tatjana Cvetkovski, Adviser, Minister of Education, Science and Technological Development, Serbia

Chair: Howard Davies, EUA/SPHERE Team




17:30. Close


19:30. Official dinner





13 December

Address: Aula Magna

Piazzale Aldo Moro 5

Rectorate Building of Sapienza.


9:00. Plenary 3: Capacity building partnerships and mutual benefits

Panel with EU and HERE representatives, discussing benefits of undertaking capacity building projects and how to design partnerships.  Reference can be made to successful project design and management that ensures mutual benefits. This can include comments on incorporating capacity building into internationalisation strategies and maintaining strategic partners. 

  • Enrico Dongiovanni, ALMALAUREA,Italy
  • Abeer Bawar, Director, Scientific Research Fund, Jordan 
  • Filipo Sartor, Director of International Relations, UNIBO, Italy
  • Nazokat Kasymova, Tashkent State Institute of Oriental Studies, Uzbekistan

Chair: Nicolas Patrici, UB/SPHERE Team


10:15. Introduction to the topic of social inclusion (for break-out groups)

Michael Gaebel, EUA/SPHERE Team


10:25. Introduction to the Poster Exhibition - EACEA


10:40.  Coffee break and poster exhibition  


11:30.  Regional break out groups: Capacity building and social inclusion

Each group will explore the topic of social inclusion in higher education systems, referring to specific projects and initiatives where relevant. Chairs will have guiding questions and also report back to the general rapporteur

Central Asia: Katherine Isaacs, University of Pisa, Bologna and Tuning Expert, Vice-Chair of the BFUG, Italy

Southern Med: Ahmad Jammal, Director General of Higher Education, Lebanon

Western Balkans: Aleksandra Nikolic, Vice Rector, University of Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina 

Eastern Europe: Enora Pruvot, EUA


13:00.  Lunch  (general rapporteur meets with break-out group rapporteurs)


14:30.  Closing session: Capacity building projects and policy reform: Lessons learnt and recommendations for the future E+ programmes

Main take-aways – General Rapporteur

Remarks from the EC on the E+ progamme – Claire Morel, European Comission

Panel: Suggestions for future programme design and focus -

  • Igor Vikhrov, Tashkent Pediatric Medical Institute/HERE
  • Olga Oleynikova, Director, NEO, Russia
  • Franz Kok, Salzaburg University/Bologna Expert
  • Claudia Peritore, National E+ Agency, Italy

Chair: Michael Gaebel, SPHERE Team/EUA


15:45.  Closing remarks



16:00. Close