Dear Rectors, Dear Colleagues,
In June 1999, Ministers from 29 European countries met in Bologna to sign the “Declaration” which formally gave rise to the Bologna Process. Its aim was to make our countries’ very different higher education and training systems more compatible, in order to facilitate collaboration, mobility, international understanding and the continuous improvement of the quality of our higher education provision.
Today the Bologna Process has grown to comprise the much larger European Higher Education Area (EHEA). This now includes 48 European countries plus the European Commission and numerous consultative members and partners, representing public authorities, higher education institutions, associations, quality assurance agencies, international organizations and other relevant stakeholders.
The Alma Mater Studiorum – Università di Bologna, jointly with the Italian Ministry for Education, Universities and Research, under the aegis of the Observatory of the Magna Charta Universitatum and the European University Association (EUA), wish to invite you to celebrate the Twentieth Anniversary of the Bologna Declaration, to be held in Bologna on 24 and 25 June 2019.
As is well known, the Ministers in charge of Higher Education in the EHEA countries periodically meet to take stock and to determine future actions. At their recent Paris Conference, in May 2018, they adopted a ‘Communiqué‘ which fixes present priorities and looks beyond towards a more ambitious European Higher Education Area in and after 2020.
Italy, host of the 2020 Ministerial Conference and presently seat of the Secretariat of the Bologna Follow-Up Group (BFUG), wants this Celebration to have a proactive, future-oriented role, providing the platform for a large-scale mid-term academic consultation on the future of the Bologna Process and the EHEA. We hope to involve hundreds of international scholars, students and staff, to focus on the fundamental values of the EHEA, and to help elaborate a “Vision” for European higher education beyond 2020. We sincerely hope you will take this opportunity to share your views and ideas on the future of the Bologna Process and EHEA, in the historical setting of Bologna.
Your contribution will be crucial in preparing a Statement by the international academic community to be presented during the Ministerial Conference to be held in Rome in June 2020.
Bologna’s porticoes and squares have welcomed communities of scholars from many countries since the year 1088: in 2019 they hope to welcome you, to join in celebrating the Twentieth Anniversary of the Bologna Process.
A detailed agenda and practical information will follow soon. Please save the date.
Francesco Ubertini Rector of the Alma Mater Studiorum – Università di Bologna