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Students contribute to a Council of Europe publication on student engagement

STRASBOURG – Student participation is at the core of the work that is being done by the European Students’ Union (ESU) and its members. Therefore, ESU is glad to hear that the Council of Europe plans to publish a new book in the spring 2014 on student engagement in Europe.

Three main aims

The main aim of the publication is threefold: to discuss the role of students in wider society, investigating the mechanisms and channels of influence students have on higher education policy making and finally, looking into what entails good governance of representative student bodies and how to achieve it.

ESU in the editorial team

To ensure that different views on student engagement will be represented, the publication will be edited by an editorial team, consisting of Manja Klemencic, Postdoctoral Fellow in Education at Harvard University Graduate School of Education, Sjur Bergan, Head of the Education Department of the Council of Europe and Rok Primožic, Chairperson of ESU.

A call for proposals was launched in May to students that would be interested to contribute to the publication. All proposals had to be sent in before the end of June and the editorial team met soon after the deadline had passed to discuss the suggestions and select those ideas that would be best suited for the publication. The editorial team received fifty proposals out of which thirty were accepted as being relevant for the book. Those proposals for articles range from an analysis on changes in student engagement and student influence to a case analysis on the best practices of existing forms of student participation and student organisations.

Following is the full list of contents as it has been set up (it may be subject to changes).

Student engagement in Europe: society, higher education and student governance

Publication in the Council of Europe Higher Education Series

Contents Preface

Introduction Word from the Editors

Manja Klemencic, Sjur Bergan and Rok Primožic 

Part I   Students’ role in society
Changing the shape and outcomes of student engagement Paul Trowler
From apathy to activism: Students’ profiles in civic and political engagement Cláudia Toriz Ramos
A challenge for student engagement – the decline of the “normal” student Dominic Orr, Foukje Wartenbergh-Cras, Christine Scholz
Student activism – past and present: the case of Slovenia Mirjana Ule
Differences in modes of student political activism across European countries Rok Primožic
Students’ rights: shaping student participation at national and European level Gabriela Bergan
I am tired of reading history. Now I want to make it! A historical incursion of the campus as a social space for wider societal reforms Rómulo Pinheiro
I might lose some ECTS credits in this battle, I don’t’ care…I learned it is important to fight for the right thing” – What have students learned while occupying the faculty? A Croatian Perspective Bojana Culum
Representation of regression of student voices in Serbia, Croatia and “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia” Martin Galevski
DisengAGEd: Lessons from New Zealand to Europe from Young Voters Henrietta McNeill

Part II   Student influence in higher education
Student engagement as service provision versus partnership Vicki Trowler
Students as … consumers, co-producers, constituency and /or citizens? Thierry Luescher-Mamashela
The powerlessness and power of students amidst pervasive non-student-centred non-learning Petr Pabian
Student rights charters – the case of University of Salford Martin Hall and Andrew Snowden
The policy influence strategy of student representatives. A comparative, case-based survey in Flemish university colleges Michiel Horsten
Student engagement in higher education policy making: a view from the Polish Ministry of Education Bartlomiej Banaszak
The evolution of public discourse on higher education financing in Europe: student unions, governments and European processes Robert Santa and George Konstantinos-Charonis
Finland and changes in tuition fees Leasa Weimer
Graduate employability Nevena Vuksanovic
Linking student participation in external quality assurance to other characteristics of HE systems David Crosier
ESU Students Experts’ Pool on Quality Assurance – mechanism for involving students in quality assurance in Europe Asnake Kazoka
The impact of quality assurance processes on student support services Anca Prisacariu

Part III Student governance
The principles of good governance in representative student organisations: opportunities and challenges posed by rapidly changing higher education environments Manja Klemencic
The quality of representation of international students in higher education governance: A case study of the German Federal State of Schleswig-Holstein and its higher education institutions Laura Asarite and Sofie Wulk 
Same same but different? Conceptualising hybrid national student unions Jens Jungblut and Regina Weber
Transition and Challenges of Student Unions in Baltic States Maksim Milto
The SIGMUS project and student organising in Serbia Kristina Davidovic,  Nenad Bucevac and Nevena Vuksanovic
Political participation as a process to foster access to higher education and promote students’ mobilisation: a Federal initiative on harmonising the Swiss grant system(s) Manuela Hugentobler and Elena Obreschkow  
Belonging, social capital and representation: First generation students’ voices in Portuguese higher education Ana Sofia Ribeiro
Alleviating exclusiveness in German universities through students’ voluntary peer mentoring Kathrin Seifert and Jelena Kovacevic
Dynamics of international student cooperation: Is a global student union a realistic idea? Ligia Deca 

Student participation and democratic culture Sjur Bergan 

— END —

For more information, please contact:

Rok Primozic, ESU Chairperson: +32/479.126.390 // or Robert Hlynur Baldursson, ESU Communications Manager: +32/473.669.894 //

The European Students’ Union, headquartered in Brussels, is the umbrella organisation of 47 national unions of students from 39 European countries. ESU represents and promotes the educational, social, economical and cultural interests of students at the European level. Through its member unions, ESU represents over 11 million students in Europe. To find out more about ESU, follow us on Twitter @ESUtwt, check out or Facebook page or visit ESU celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2012.


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