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Promoting excellence in Education


21. 05. 19

IQAA’s participation in IREG 2019 Conference Rankings: A Challenge to Higher Education? (Bologna, Italy, 8-10 May 2019)


On 8-10 May 2019 in Bologna, Italy, IREG Observatory and Academic Ranking and Excellence hosted The IREG 2019 Conference and the IREG General Assembly, which took place in the University of Bologna (Alma Mater Studiorum Universita di Bologna).

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Representatives of an Independent Agency for quality assurance in education - President, Sholpan Kalanova and the Head of the administrative Department, Daulet Kalanov participated in the event. IQAA is a recognized member and a regular participant of the IREG International Observatory events.

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During the 3 days of events, participants had the opportunity to share the experience of ranking studies in higher education and set a new impetus for the development of the fundamental questions of university rankings. Among the current trends to the forefront are the following: the impact of Artificial Intelligence and Big Data on rankings; online distance teaching into rankings, etc.

ireg5The conference began with an opening session that included Luiz C. Costa, President of the IREG Observatory on Academic Ranking and Excellence and Academic Vice Rector of IESB university, Brazil, Francesco Ubertini, Rector of the University of Bologna, and Gaetano Manfredi, Rector of the University of Naples.

Jaroslaw Gowin, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Science and Higher Education of Poland delivered a keynote speech: Rankings: a Challenge to Public Poicy? Reflection from Poland’s Perspective. In his speech Gowin remarked that current situation “creates the demand for verified and reliable information that reduces the complexity of a problem to its most relevant aspects” adding that “social expectations for rankings are clear – rankings should provide trustworthy information allowing to dismiss alternatives that do not meet our criteria and narrow down the range of choice to the most appropriate options”.

This was followed by three sessions presented by expert rankers and researchers that discussed Trends and New Developments in Global and National Rankings, Use of Rankings in Developing University Strategy, and the Future of Rankings – From Bibliometrics to Global Performance Metrics.

During the second day of IREG 2019 Conference a session on the role of rankings in Latin America was led by Luiz Claudio Costa, President of the IREG Observatory. Discussion on the relationship between rankings and the media was chaired by Martin Ince of the Global Academic Advisory Board with presentations by Gianna Fregonara of Corriere della Sera, Simona Bizzonera of QS, and Richard Holmes of University Ranking Watch.

ireg6At the closing session President of IREG Observatory presented medals of Honorary IREG Observatory Member to the two outstanding members of the ranking community: Robert J. Morse, Chief Data Strategist at US News & World Report and pioneer in the field of professional university ranking; Jan Sadlak, former President of IREG Observatory (2009 – 2018).

In the speech, Jan Sadlak noted the significant contribution of the IQAA President to the development of IREG, which was at the origin of the methodology of the ranking of higher education institutions.

The Conference closed with a presentation of the venue for the IREG 2020 Conference to be held at Beijing University of Technology in Beijing, China in October 2020.

The program, materials and photo report of the conference can be found at the following link.


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