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An Integrity System for the Romanian Higher Education CCU


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Regional Conference on Fighting Corruption in Education in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, 24-25 November, Bratislava

Daniela Marinache

Published in: Education
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An Integrity System for the Romanian Higher Education CCU

  1. 1. An Integrity System for the Romanian Higher Education 23 – 25 November 2011 Presenter: Daniela Marinache The Coalition for Clean Universities
  2. 2. Who are we?
  3. 3. Context <ul><li>Romania was ranked 70th in the world, according to the 2008 Corruption Perception Index (Transparency International), being the most corrupt country of the EU new member states. </li></ul><ul><li>Universities as “diploma factories” (competencies, not just diplomas) </li></ul><ul><li>77% of the students and 35% of the teaching staff consider that the level of corruption in Romanian universities is high. </li></ul><ul><li>50% of students and 28% of teaching staff from public universities know that in their department there are professors who receive money/gifts from their students. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Main starting problem
  5. 5. What is our concept? <ul><li>Mapping out the problems of integrity that exist in the Romanian higher education system </li></ul><ul><li>Classify the most stringent problems in 4 categories: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Transparency and administrative fairness </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Academic fairness </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Governance quality </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Financial management practices </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Building support of stakeholders (governmental actors, Teaching Staff’s Union, ARACIS, National Council of Rectors) </li></ul><ul><li>Pilot the methodology on 5 Romanian Universities </li></ul><ul><li>Adapt and extend the evaluation on 42 public universities </li></ul>Questionnaire
  6. 6. What did we measure? Transparency and administrative fairness Academic fairness Governance quality Financial management practice Documents requested on the basis of Law 544/2001 (activity reports, internal rules and regulations, income and expense budgets, wealth statements, rules and regulations of admissions/final exams, lists of patents/inventions, ISI publications, etc.) <ul><li>Existence of rules and procedures to combat plagiarism </li></ul><ul><li>Number of ISI papers per doctoral school </li></ul><ul><li>The academic process (classes) </li></ul><ul><li>How the appeal committees for admissions/final exams work </li></ul><ul><li>Open access to vacancies </li></ul><ul><li>Nepotisms </li></ul><ul><li>Student participation in decision making </li></ul><ul><li>Academic performance of staff (ISI papers) </li></ul><ul><li>How merit-based salary supplements are rewarded </li></ul><ul><li>How subsidies are spent </li></ul><ul><li>Randomly check public procurements documents </li></ul><ul><li>If wealth and interests statement pose any suspicions or are justified </li></ul>
  7. 7. Scores 42 universities Total points Mean Comments Transparency and administrative fairness 30p. 20,2p Only 38% of universities are transparent with regard to administration Only 16 universities have wealth and interests statements published and updated Academic fairness 20p. 12p. 71% of universities have cases of plagiarism Governance quality 35p. 10p. In 57% of universities, governance quality is lower than the mean that is already low enough Financial management 15p. 8,8p. 41% of cases stand below average, 17% of cases is equal to the average 42% are above average.
  8. 8. Project results <ul><li>Education section on the on-line platform </li></ul><ul><li>Access to resources (integrity studies, CCU) </li></ul><ul><li>Forum for reporting academic irregularities (election of the university management) </li></ul><ul><li>RAS intermediates justified complains and irregularities to the education lawyer ( juridical assistance ) </li></ul><ul><li>RAS sends the cases reporting integrity issues to the press ( visibility to the stakeholders and public ) </li></ul><ul><li>0 universities received 5 * </li></ul><ul><li>3 universities received 4 * </li></ul><ul><li>18 universities received 3* </li></ul><ul><li>10 universities received 2* </li></ul><ul><li>5 universities received 1* </li></ul><ul><li>6 universities received 0* </li></ul>
  9. 9. Value Added <ul><li>First university ranking ever done in Romania </li></ul><ul><li>Mechanism of publishing and receiving juridical assistance for corruption cases in universities </li></ul><ul><li>It opened for debate the issue of integrity in the Romanian state universities </li></ul><ul><li>Concrete measures implemented by universities regarding their transparency level (ex. posting wealth and interests statements) </li></ul>
  10. 10. Media impact <ul><li>Visibility in the most important newspapers and in TV shows (public and private televisions) </li></ul><ul><li>Recommendation regarding the need to increase mechanisms of control was further mentioned in the 2008 EC Report (EC report-supporting document, SEC(2008) 2349/2, p. 14). </li></ul><ul><li>The CCU evaluation and recommendations were successively mentioned by the World Bank Report (2010): Skills, not just diplomas, p. 146-156 </li></ul>
  11. 11. Policy relevance Project recommendations Policy echoes (Law 1/2011) <ul><li>Necessity to increase mechanisms of accountability and control </li></ul><ul><li>Funding criteria on performance, link between funding and the quality of education and research. </li></ul><ul><li>Clear regulations on conflict of interests, incompatibilities and family relations in subordinated positions </li></ul><ul><li>The weak role of students and other stakeholders in the quality evaluation and quality assurance of education </li></ul><ul><li>Art. 121 – establishes mechanisms of ministry control and university accountability </li></ul><ul><li>30% of funding delivered on performance + strong accent on research + financial incentives </li></ul><ul><li>New system of incompatibilities for members in university boards </li></ul><ul><li>Clear regulations regarding the participation of students in university evaluations and decision-making </li></ul>
  12. 12. Next steps… <ul><li>A new CCU university evaluation? </li></ul><ul><li>The higher education reform has partly included CCU recommendations into laws. </li></ul><ul><li>How are the universities putting them into practice? </li></ul><ul><li>How is the new autonomy-accountability mechanism settled in practice? </li></ul>
  13. 13. Thank you for your attention!