International Buisness College Mitrovica (IBC-M) is hosting a Kick off and Project Management meeting from 3 to 5 th March within its Erasmus+ support project: Strengthening university autonomy and increasing accountability and transparency of Western Balkan Universities, STAND in short. The project is an effort of 17 partners from Western Balkans and EU, who will come together to work towards project objectives.

Format: The Kick off will be held in hybrid version: in limited presence and open online attendance. The meeting will be open by the representatives from the EU Office in Kosovo , Mr. Stergios Tragoudas, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology /Kosovo, Mr. Xhavit Rexhaj – Deputy Minister of MEST, Ministry of Education, Sport, and Youth/ Albania (TBD) and Ministry of Education/Montenegro, Mr. Danilo Alagic.

About Project: Higher education governance and its autonomy is strongly enhanced by the effective and convincing accountability, transparency and financial sustainability. Discussions on the university governance and autonomy throughout HEIs in Europe are coming as a response to diverse challenges at the different country’s context. As a result, the need for gaining and enhancing public trust in higher education became manifest to develop appropriate forms of transparency and accountability of both public and private institutions. An initiative to form a consortium came as response to address these challenges through this roject.

The concept entails investing in the strengthening the mechanisms that ensures the long-term sustainability of university autonomy, transparency and accountability. The project foresees cooperation between HEIs in the WB region, their respective ministries and program country partners and contributes to the increasing of professional capacities of HEI staff in partnering HEIs.
As structural project it will support reflecting on standards at EU partners and enhancing them at WB institutions through intensified regular academic and management exchange of good practice and sustainable networking between EU-WB partners.

A mix of bottom-up and top-down approach that will be used in the project, fosters the dialogue between universities and ministries, and thus enables the consortium to contribute more effectively to the project implementation and sustainability to strengthen the autonomy of Western Balkans higher education institutions. The project aims to reach up to 50,000 persons engaged in higher education and other related activities in Kosovo, Albania and Montenegro and abroad through its dissemination activities.

Consortium: International Business College Mitrovica, University of Prishtina “Hasan Prishtina” (Kosovo), University “Kadri Zeka” Gjilan (Kosovo), University of Applied Science in Ferizaj (Kosovo), University of Gjakova “Fehmi Agani” (Kosovo), POLIS University (Albania), University of Tirana (Albania), University “Aleksandër Moisiu” Durres (Albania), University of Montenegro (Montenegro), Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (Kosovo), Ministry of Education, Sport, and Youth
(Albania), Ministry of Education (Montenegro) , Hamburg University of Technology (Germany), University of Zagreb (Croatia), University of Foggia (Italy), South East European University (North Macedonia) and European University Association (Belgium).