Creating a Culture of Global Recognition

Podium Discussion

  • Prof. Dr. Peter-André Alt, German Rectors' Conference
  • Prof. Ernest Aryeetey, African Research Universities Alliance
  • Katia Dolgova-Dreyer, Council of Europe
  • Dr. Michaela Martin, UNESCO-International Institute for Educational Planning
  • Prof. Dr. Martin Paul, Ruhr University Bochum


Building on the Lisbon Recognition Convention and other regional agreements, UNESCO’s Global Convention from 2019 wants to create a common framework for fair, transparent and non-discriminatory recognition of higher education qualifications. Once ratified by 20 signatory countries, it will be the first legally binding United Nations treaty on higher education. Moreover, the Global Convention is open for inter-regional academic mobility and puts into place universal principles for improving recognition practices. In the panel, we want to discuss the Conventions’ benefits for students and universities. Additionally, the Global Convention highlights the importance of the recognition of all kinds of prior learning. Thus, it may encourage universities to create new opportunities for individual flexible learning paths and new forms of mobility raising a common culture of recognition across institutional and national borders.

Prof. Dr. Peter-André Alt

President, German Rectors' Conference
Prof. Dr. Peter-André Alt has been President of the German Rectors' Conference since 1 August 2018. From June 2010 to July 2018, Alt was President of Freie Universität (FU) Berlin. Between 2011 and 2012 and 2017 and 2018, he was spokesperson for the Berlin State Rectors' Conference. Alt studied German language and literature, political science, history and philosophy. He received his doctorate in 1984 and his habilitation in 1993. Since 1995, Alt has been a full professor of Modern German Literary Studies, first at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum (1995 to 2002), then at the Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg (2002 to 2005), and since 2005 at the FU Berlin. Research stays have taken him to Cambridge, Prague, Princeton and Vienna. Alt has published 19 monographs and more than 100 essays on the literary and cultural history of the 17th-20th centuries. As a columnist, he regularly publishes on science policy topics, among others in the Zeit, the Frankfurter Allgemeine, the Süddeutsche Zeitung, the Tagesspiegel and the Berliner Zeitung. He was or is a member of numerous national and international advisory boards of major science and cultural organisations in Austria, the USA and China, among others.

Prof. Ernest Aryeetey

Secretary-General, African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA)
The African Research Universities Alliance (ARUA) is a network of 16 of Africa’s flagship universities. Ernest Aryeetey is a Professor of Economics and former Vice Chancellor of University of Ghana (2010-2016). He was also previously Director of the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER) (2003-2010) at University of Ghana and the first Director of the Africa Growth Initiative of Brookings Institution, Washington D.C.
He has held academic appointments at the School of Oriental and African Studies (London), Yale University and Swarthmore College in the U.S. at various points in time. Ernest Aryeetey is a member of the Governing Council of the United Nations University and was previously Chairman of the Advisory Board of UNU-World Institute for Development Economics Research (Helsinki). He is currently Board Chairman of Stanbic Bank Ghana Limited.
One of Ernest Aryeetey’s strategic priorities as Vice Chancellor at University of Ghana was to develop the University into a research-intensive institution that supports structural transformation in Africa.

Katia Dolgova-Dreyer

Council of Europe
Katia Dolgova-Dreyer is the Co-Secretary to the Lisbon Recognition Convention and the ENIC Network. She is also the Secretary to the Council of Europe Education Committee, comprising 50 member States of the European Cultural Convention. Katia represents the Council of Europe in the meetings of the Bologna Working Group on the Social Dimension in Higher Education and the Thematic Peer Group on national legislation and procedures compliant with the Lisbon Recognition Convention.
Katia has been working in the Council of Europe since 1997, where she joined the Education Department in 2006. 

Dr. Michaela Martin

IIEP-UNESCO Programme Specialist, UNESCO-International Institute for Educational Planning

Michaela Martin has a track record of more than 25 years in research and teaching in higher education policy, governance and planning. She holds a doctorate in Education from the University of Paris, a Post-graduate degree from the College of Europe, Bruges, Belgium, a Master’s degree in Franco-German Economic Relations from the University of Paris III (France).
Since she joined the UNESCO International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP) in 1990, she has been specializing in the management of higher education. Since 2004, she has been in charge of an international research and training programme in the area of internal and external quality assurance in higher education. Since 2017, she is in charge of a research on flexible learning pathways in higher education. Since January 2021 she is the interim R&D team leader at UNESCO IIEP.
Over the years, she has published some 50 single or co-authored books, articles and several series of training modules.

Prof. Dr. Martin Paul

Rector of Ruhr-University Bochum since 2021
Previously he had been President of Maastricht University (UM) for ten years. After obtaining a medical degree and a doctorate from Heidelberg University, he has held several academic positions in Germany, the United States and the Netherlands.
In addition to his distinguished career as a researcher (with more than 300 publications) in the field of hypertension as well as an educator, Professor Paul has become active in academic management. He has been Dean of the Medical Faculty of the Freie Universität and Vice President of the Executive Board of the Charité – Universitätsmedizin in Berlin. Furthermore, he has served as Dean of the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences at UM and as Vice President of Maastricht University Medical Centre+, where he holds a chair in Clinical Pharmacology.
Professor Paul has worked actively to professionalise academic leadership on the international level. In this context, he has served as Chair of DEAN, a European network of deans and academic managers. He has also been a board member of the Association of Academic Health Centers and served as chair of its International Steering Group. More recently, he has been appointed as a member of the committee of experts of the National Science Council Germany for universities.
He is an elected member of the Netherlands Academy for Technology and Innovation and of the Austrian Science Council. In addition, he serves as a UMC fellow of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Furthermore, Professor Paul is active as Vice President of the Young European Research Universities Network (YERUN) and Vice-chair of the Worldwide Universities Network (WUN). He is the initiator of the YUFE (Young Universities for the Future of Europe) alliance, which has been the top ranked proposal in the recent European Commission call to create true European universities. In addition, he serves on several advisory and supervisory boards in Germany, Europe and beyond. He is the recipient of numerous prizes as well as three honorary doctorates from the University of Würzburg (Germany), Lobachevsky State University (Russia) and the University of Rijeka (Croatia).

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