Created on 16 January 2023

The meeting of the Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications Contact Points (CPs), Quality Assurance Agencies (QAAs) and ENIC/NARIC representatives of economies of Western Balkans took place on 13 and 14 December in Sarajevo. Representatives of all the economies attended the meeting as well as representatives of the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) which was the host of the meeting, the director of the Education Reform Initiative of South Eastern Europe (ERI SEE), and consultants working on the assignment on Joint Master Degree in ICT and the Regional Recognition Database (RRD).


Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications Sarajevo December 2022On Joint Master Degree in ICT, the consultants presented key findings to attendees – on the Concept with the subtopics on admission and fees, potential options for scholarships, curriculum and possibilities for accreditation. It focused on the recommendations for finding the most appropriate and sustainable financial method for implementing the joint master degree program, including the provisional budget and costs, possible options for financial sustainability – through Erasmus +, Erasmus Mundus Master Degree, capacity building projects in higher education, exploring options for establishing a Regional Academic Balkans Fund and opportunities through advocacy and fundraising. Lastly, it provided guidelines for selection of location if such a joint master study program is established. All participants agreed that this assignment was being finalized at the right time taking into account the opening of European Universities Initiative to all Western Balkans higher education institutions.


Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications Sarajevo December 2022 2On RRD, the developers presented the fully functional database, including both the public and private part, and demonstrated the use of the database. A discussion on training concerning the use of database for ENIC/NARIC offices followed, and a joint calendar of trainings was agreed.


The second day discussions centered on the European Universities Initiative (EUI) and the work plan for 2023.

Working Group on Recognition of Academic Qualifications Sarajevo December 2022 3Members of WGRAQ were addressed by a representative of the DG NEAR on EUI, one of the flagships on education in EU. A quick information on the background of the initiative were presented, stressing the overarching nature of the initiative to taking international education cooperation at another level, connecting HEIs with the aim to bring Europeans together. The EUI opened to all Western Balkans economies on equal footing – given the previous distinction of programme and partners, so that all Western Balkans HEI can participate. If one of HEI becomes a part of alliance, they get the available funding.

At the end of meeting, the work plan for 2023 was discussed and decided, especially given the priorities stemming from the Agreement on Recognition on Higher Education Qualifications, and the support in Quality Assurance.