The ERUA Research Group regularly holds international and interdisciplinary conferences.

Upcoming Workshops

18.-20. May 2023: Reform Universities, Society and Entrepreneurship: Current Views and Future Research Agenda

May 18-20, 2023, University of the Aegean (Island of Chios)

Anastasia Constantelou, University of the Aegean

Reform Universities, Society and Entrepreneurship: Current Views and Future Research Agenda

This workshop inquires how reform universities and their mission of societal engagement relate to the current demands for an “entrepreneurial university.” How do reform universities teach, research, and organize entrepreneurship, and how do they differ from other traditional universities?

We welcome contributions that focus on:

  • Universities’ third mission and entrepreneurial universities
  • Regional entrepreneurial ecosystems
  • Entrepreneurial education: Types, methods and classifications
  • Assessments of entrepreneurial education: Empirical evidence
  • Regional vs national vs European context of entrepreneurial universities’ research: Comparative approaches
  • The entrepreneurial university vs the entrepreneurial society

Deadline for submissions: April 1.

The workshop is organized within the framework of the European Reform University Alliance (ERUA), which includes five young reform universities in France, Denmark, Germany, Greece, and Bulgaria. For participants from ERUA partners, there is no participation fee, and travel and accommodation may be covered through the Erasmus+ programme.

For additional information, please see: here

Past Workshops

08.-10. September 2022: Digital Transformation of Research and Practice in the Reform Universities: Past, Present and Future

September 8-10, 2022, New Bulgarian University (Sozopol base)

Kristian Bankov, New Bulgarian University

Digital Transformation of Research and Practice in the Reform Universities: Past, Present and Future

Internet and the new digital technologies brought globally the most important socio-cultural transformation during the last few decades. Universities, as all other educational institutions, are among the most affected by this transformation.

The workshop focussed on the following themes:  

1) Reforming Education for the Digital Age
2) Higher Education for Digital Citizenship
3) New Tools and Approaches in Digitalized Education

Find the workshop program here.

05.-07. May 2022: The History and Legacy of Reform: Changing Promises and Realities of Higher Education

May 5-7, 2022, University of Konstanz

Anne Kwaschik, University of Konstanz

The History and Legacy of Reform: Changing Promises and Realities of Higher Education

Read a report about the workshop here.

This is the second instalment of a workshop series, organized by the ERUA WP 2 research group designed to explore both the existing and the plausible future alternatives to Higher Education. Over the next two years, we will be discussing the questions of how and why reform universities emerged, what it meant to be an alternative in the past and what it would mean to be an alternative today in the modern landscape of Higher Education. Changes took place as the result of historic processes characterized by the rise of vocational universities and the contestation they had to face by alternative forms of learning and researching. From their origins, reform universities had embodied the expectation to convey a project of empowerment and social emancipation from the domination of societal strongholds such as church and state. Therefore, we approach reform as a promise of departure that is bound to shape new modes of interaction and knowledge production. To understand the current reality of reform universities, we rely on the idea that the past lives into the present as handed down order. This enables us to ask what it is that we want to hand down to future generations.  Within this framework, our workshop investigates the relationship between major socio-political transformations and reform initiatives. In the duality of promises and realities, the workshop will investigate two major problem fields concerning: 1. the scope and impact of Higher Education and 2. the transformation of Higher Education by new forms of funding, evaluation, and organization.

The workshop is open to the public. You can find the program here.

As part of the workshop, a keynote lecture will be given on reform and the university through History. The lecture will be opened by Dorothea Debus (UKon) and Anne Kwaschik (UKon) and is followed by a reception held on K7.

Thursday, May 5, 2022, University of Konstanz

William Whyte, University of Oxford

Semper Reformanda: Reform and the University Through History

Universities are perpetually in need of reform. That, at least, is the conclusion many scholars seem to have reached. Successive studies show universities through history either reforming or failing to reform.  What explains this recurrent theme? And why does change – even apparently radical change – so often take the form of reversion to older types? Why does reform rarely amount to the dissolution or replacement of the university? Drawing on a variety of examples across time, I will try to tease out answers to these questions: answers that will, I hope, tell us something about both reform in particular and the nature of the university in general. The demand for reform is not just generated from outside; rather, it is intrinsic to the idea of the university. The use of past models to effect and to frustrate reform is equally revealing, showing how universities draw on their history to make as well as prevent change.

About William Whyte: William Whyte is professor of Social and Architectural History and a fellow of St John’s College, Oxford. He is especially intrigued by what the serious investigation of the built and natural environment does to existing accounts of modern history. His research focuses on architecture, with a special interest in institutions like schools, universities, and churches.

Find out more about the talk here.

24.-25. September 2021: What Are Reform Universities (and How Do We Know)?

September 24-25, 2021, Roskilde University

Kasper Risbjerg Eskildsen, Roskilde University / Anastasia Constantelou, University of the Aegean

What Are Reform Universities (and How Do We Know)?

The double workshop organized by the ERUA Research Group has the purpose of bringing its members physically together and agree about a common agenda for the years to come. To do so, the first part of the workshop investigates what reform universities are. The second part explores how we can plan for the future together. Find out more about the program here.