18 December 2018

Report of SOM1 meeting, Krems – Austria

Report of SOM1 meeting, Krems – Austria

Download the SOM1 Report

The ASEM Education Secretariat drafted a report in 2 forms:  a summary report provides a short overview of the most important topics presented and issues discussed and the full report provides a complete overview of the content and topics discussed for further reading.  Each paragraph is numbered to navigate through the reports and easily find back the paragraphs of your interest in each of the 2 versions of the report. In case you have a remark or a request for adjustment, please inform us and we will adjust accordingly.

  • Download the Summary Report here.
  • Download the Full Report here.
  • All presentations of the SOM1 meeting can be found on this page.

Theme of the SOM1

The Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research of Austria, hosted the SOM1 of ASEMME7 in Krems (Austria), from 15-17 October 2018 together with the Danube University Krems, The University for Continuing Education. The meeting was opened with the welcoming words of Rector Friedrich Faulhammer of the Danube University of Krems and Barbara Weitgruber of the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research.

‘Pathways of Recognition: A contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) from a Lifelong Learning perspective’ was the title and the overall theme of this meeting.  It was confirmed several times during the meeting that the ASEM Education Process has to play a role in the realisation of SDG4 on Quality Education and Lifelong Learning. The meeting has focused specifically on the importance of recognition and quality assurance to create mutual trust for increasing transparancy, comparability and permeability which will enchance Europe-Asia collaboration and mobility.  Collaboration between regions as well as between education sectors and levels and between education and business sector can be a strong catalyst to support Lifelong Learning and the SDG4.  The relationship between the discussion on qualifications and recognition and Sustainable Development was explained in the keynote presentation of Borhene Chakroun, Section Chief of Youth, Literacy and Development of UNESCO. After this keynote presentation, participants have discussed about these topics in smaller groups.


In the afternoon of the first day, participants have chosen between 3 different workshops under the themes:

  • Workshop 1 – Tools for recognition: Quality Assurance and Recognition stand for a welcoming culture and a culture of trust

This session took a closer look to some instruments dealing with recognition and quality assurance that show encouraging potential collaboration and exchange/mobility between Asia and Europe through a presentation by Kitty Fehringer on the EURAXESS initiative that contains a pan-European portal to mobilise and support researchers. Another presentation was provided by Madhu Singh from the UNESCO Institute of Lifelong Learning and focused on the outcomes and trends that emerged from the collaborative Global Inventory of Qualification systems and how the conclusions relate to the ASEM Education Process and the Agenda 2030. 2 discussion tables concluded that the Global Inventory encourages peer learning and mutual understanding for collaboration and dialogue within ASEM Education. Another conclusion resulting from the table discussions was that a culture of trust needs to be nurtured to dilute the lack of recognition in order to encourage and facilitate smooth credit transfer. A multilateral platform such as ASEM Education is essential for all countries to work toghether.

  • Workshop 2 – Collaboration to stimulate transition between educational levels and systems

The second workshop focused on how individual learning pathways can change over time and how education systems should adapt to the needs of creating these (individual) learning pathways. The projects presented have shown a diversity in different approaches to address the needs of individuals in Europe and Asia. Prof. Oleynikova, Director of Center for VET Studies, Russia, presented first the advantages and challenges related to individual learning pathways and underscored the importance of concrete actions at national and international level such as a national legal framework and qualification frameworks together with recognition of qualifications and competences based on learning outcomes. Furthermore, different good practice examples related to this theme were presented by Ms. Nyussupova (Al Farabi Kazakh National University) and Dr. Stroble (University of Salzburg), prof. Bang from the Konying Cyber University, Ms. Friedrich of te OeAD and Dr. HUMMEL (University of Graz, Austria). After the presentations, participants discussed at 2 different discussion tables comparing experiences, on how and why ASEM Partner countries should collaborate with each other to facilitate transitions between educational levels and systems. The conclusion was that the AEP still has untapped potential to tackle many of the international challenges.

  • Workshop 3 – Academia and non-academia – a challenging cooperation

This workshop focused on the collaboration opportunities and challenges between businesses and education. A first presentation by prof. Lindner (University Teacher College Vienna) highlighted the importance of Entrepreneurship Education and presented a practical model.  Dr. Filiz Keser Aschenberger (Danube University) focused on the importance of Lifelong Learning for businesses against the backdrop of demographic, socio-economic and technological changes. In the last presentation by Claudia Linditsch (University of Applied Sciences, Graz) presented 3 projects that focus on the enhancement of University-Business cooperation in Asia. During the table discussion, participants have discussed and analysed the expectations and requirements from education sector and the private sector. It was concluded that more institutionalised discussion is needed to develop shared strategies with different actors. Therefore, an interdisciplinary approach is needed with active collaboration between education sector and industry. ASEM Education could play a crucial role in bringing different actors together and disseminate information regarding academia and industry collaboration for policy development and system improvement with initiatives such as the ASEM University-Business forum, credit recognition and apprenticeship programs.

Presentations and Pitches

On the second day of the SOM1, a first presentation was provided by Dr. Alexandra Angress on the publication ‘Looking back and looking ahead, the ASEM Education Process – History and Vision 2008-2018’.  The publication is freely downloadable on this link.

After this presentation, ASEM partners and Stakeholders provided information in a pitch on ongoing initiatives as well as new initatives:

  • Marie-Céline Falisse (Erasmus Student Network): looking for ASEM partners for pilot project
  • Magalie Soenen (delegate, Flemish Community of Belgium): expert group on interregional credit transfer mechanisms and learning outcome systems and Work Placement Programme
  • Colin Tück, Director of the European Quality Assurance Register for Higher Education (EQAR)
  • Miandy Munusamy, PhD student at the Asia Europe Institute, University of Malay: Research “The internationalization of HE in Malaysia: the impact of the ASEM Education Process”.
  • Torben Schuster (delegate, Danish ministry of Education): update on the ASEM Lifelong Learning Hub
  • Xiangyang Sun (Deputy Executive Director of ASEF): Education programmes ASEF
  • Saskia Weißenbach (German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)): how to further develop the ASEM Education Process?

The ASEM Education Secretariat provided a presentation on the road ahead until Bucharest regarding the preparation of the Chair’s Conclusions and the Stocktaking report. Finally, the host of the ASEMME7, the Ministry of National Education Romania (represented by Cristina Macé, Advisor for International and European Relations) presented the milestones to Romania. She recalled the dates of the ARC7 and the ASEMME7: The ASEF Rectors’ conference and students’ forum will take place from 11th – 14th of May 2019 and the SOM2 on 14th of May, followed by ASEMME7 on the 15th and 16th of May 2019. The official invitation letter will be sent out by the end of December this year.  The SOM1 meeting in Krems, Austria was closed by Rector Friedrich Faulhammer (Danube University) and Dr. Christoph Ramoser (Head of Department, Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research of Austria).