5# RISIS Policymakers Session: A challenge for policy, heterogeneity calls for differentiated strategies
September 14, 2020
The 5th RISIS Policymakers Session was organized on the 23rd of September in an online format (2 pm – 4 pm). RISIS focused on the heterogeneity of European Higher Institutions with a presentation entitled The heterogeneity of European Higher Education Institutions. A configurational approach by Professor Benedetto Lepori USI (Università della Svizzera italiana).
Higher Education Institutions are highly heterogeneous in terms of their profile, governance, and output. This represents a challenge for policies as well, as some issues will be relevant only for a subset of HEI and differentiated policies at the European and national level will be required. For instance, the whole policy discussion on research excellence will be relevant only for a few hundreds of universities, against nearly 3,000 institutions covered by the European Tertiary Education Register (ETER).
During the Policymakers Session, Dr. Benedetto Lepori illustrated a proposal of classification of European HEIs based on the extended version of ETER developed in the RISIS project and using novel statistical methods introduced in the RISIS methodological activity. This classification identifies five main classes along two main dimensions, i.e. the balance between research and education and the orientation towards natural and technical sciences vs. social sciences and humanities. Dr Marc Saillard, National Research Agency (FRANCE) added a valuable contribution, describing the evolution and transformation of French academic world in the last decade. Many Universities and Research Centers in France merged together to become more competitive developing projects together.