Symβiosis aims to provide resources, commentaries and analysis, on political, social and cultural ideas and developments affecting change and policy, original and creative, based on arguments, able to propose and debate solutions to critical issues, maintaining a broad intellectual scope and global reach that readers need to understand the choices shaping lives, and reflecting on Greece, the Balkans, Europe and the world.

 

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Developments, Current Status and Future Prospects of Education in South-east Europe

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Date added: 02/16/2013
Date modified: 02/16/2013
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Pavel Zgaga

The Importance of Education in Social Reconstruction
Six Years of the Enhanced Graz Process:
Developments, Current Status and Future Prospects of Education in South-east Europe

The Enhanced Graz Process celebrates its sixth anniversary. This is an important occasion since the Graz Process, which has subsequently been incorporated in the Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe as the Enhanced Graz Process, has been one of the first signs that the European Union considers South Eastern European countries as future members of the integrated European family. Proclaimed focus on the capacity building, on strengthening social capital of each and every country in this region through strengthening its educational system and especially the potential to cooperate and learn from others, has announced a new stage in the type of assistance that the EU provided to the entire SEE.

Political Significance of Knowledge in Southeast Europe

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Date added: 02/16/2013
Date modified: 02/16/2013
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Ivo Šlaus

Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts; Croatian Parliament, Zagreb, Croatia

The processes of globalization and transition are inevitable, full of dangers and threats, but offer enormous opportunities.
Surveys of public opinion show that citizens are not aware of the fact that their countries are governed by the will of the people and a large majority considers that their country and the world are not going in the right direction. Presently, knowledge is becoming a dominant political power. This article outlines a strategy for building a knowledge-based society to minimize dangers, avoid threats, and take advantage of most of the opportunities, bringing a concrete action plan for Croatia, applicable to countries with similar history and socioeconomic structure.

The Balkans on their way to Europe and to themselves – an agenda for higher education

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Date added: 02/19/2013
Date modified: 02/19/2013
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Michael Daxner

The privilege to being chosen to address you at this meeting is challenged by the double bind, which has not left me since I returned from my UNMIK assignment in Pristina and Belgrade, in 2002. Does anyone in this room need another confirmation of the common view that higher education plays a critical role for the continuation of the region's way to Europe; does anyone need another proof that the Balkans' way towards the new Europe is also a way to themselves; isn't it obvious that higher education is one among the few central hinges that will enable the region really catch up with the more advanced, and with the luckier partners in Europe, inside and outside the European Union? Of course, for most of my professional life I have been a higher education person. I'm still one, but after Kosovo, after Afghanistan, after working for post-conflict policy and diving into the hopeless deadlocks of never-to-be-resolved problems I have learned that higher education is not only a stimulus for the creation of sustainable civil societies, but it is also an instrument and a derivate of politics allocated much higher in priorities and strategic reputation.

Strenghtening higher education and research in South East Europe

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Date added: 02/19/2013
Date modified: 02/19/2013
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The Western Balkans countries have great potential in spite of the scale of the challenges still facing universities. Despite the problems, governments, higher education institutions and students share the common objective of creating a European Higher Education and Research Area, and of supporting the fundamental premises of the Lisbon Strategy that knowledge societies and economies can only be realised through strong and socially responsive higher education institutions. While these goals are shared throughout Europe, they are particularly pertinent for the Western Balkan countries. Growth and the creation of jobs is of the utmost urgency and action is required now if this is to be achieved. Therefore priority has to be given to increasing investment in higher education and research now as a key long-term strategy for the region, in order to meet both the current and emerging needs of citizens. All stakeholders should be involved in this process. Universities accept the challenge; action is required by governments at national, regional and European level.

The European higher education area and South East Europe

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Date added: 02/19/2013
Date modified: 02/19/2013
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Statement from the Meeting of South-East European Educational Cooperation Network,
Ljubljana, 10 – 11 July 2003

South-East European Educational Cooperation Network (SEE ECN) is the most comprehensive educational information network in South Eastern Europe. It was established in 2000 in the framework of Enhanced Graz process with a support from Government of Austria and Open Society Institute Network. Today, with additional support of Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, its main functions are provided by a coordination "hub" at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, and nine "country nodes" in all countries of the region: Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro, FYR of Macedonia, Kosovo, Albania, Bulgaria, Romania and Moldova. Membership currently includes 226 institutions (largely universities and NGO but also all regional Ministries of Education, etc.) and 127 individual experts (most of them from universities and research institutes) predominately from the region but also from other European countries and global world.