The second training webinar of the INsPIRE project was held on July 28th 2021. The focus of the webinar was University Governance models and the experience of the Portugese Higher Education system.
Speakers were Pedro Barrias, Head of Cabinet to the Portuguese State Secretary for Science, Technology and Higher Education, and Ruaidhri Neavyn, Special Adviser on Higher Education Policy Development with the Higher Education Authority (HEA) in Ireland.
The session was moderated by Paulo Resende da Silva (University of Evora) and Martina Zipoli (UNIMED), and was attended by +35 Iraqi colleagues and by representatives of the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research in Iraq.
A governance model is a balance of powers between the state control, academic oligarchy and freedom, and community / market control. At the same time, it may refer to how universities structure their boards. Understanding the balance and the role of each body is essential for a good governance system.
“Good governance structures, which involve appropriate stakeholders, can ensure that the university meets both its own strategic objectives, and national and regional strategic objectives.”
Ruaidhri is currently employed as a Special Adviser on Higher Education Policy Development with the Higher Education Authority (HEA) in Ireland. His activities in HE policy development have included enterprise engagement, industry linked HE programmes, HE system performance and governance frameworks and international collaborative networks. Prior to his appointment as an adviser to the HEA, Ruaidhri served as president of two institutes of technology in Ireland for almost 13 years. Prior to these appointments he served in several senior management positions in the other Institutes of Technology, including Registrar, Head of Development and Head of Science Faculty. During his career he has also served on numerous national and regional boards and committees. He has been an expert advisor for the OECD and EU on numerous international HE reviews. He is currently the chair of the OECD’s group of national experts on higher education and is a member of the Portuguese Higher Education Advisory Council. He is one of the co-designers and founders of RUN-EU and is a member of its management and co-ordination bodies.
“The balance should be in favor of HEIs regarding scientific issues, research and curriculum, while the state should set the minimum requirements throughout the country ensuring all the institutions to work in similar ways.”
Pedro Barrias is currently Head of Cabinet to the Portuguese State Secretary for Science, Technology and Higher Education. Prior to that experience, he was Advisor to the Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education, Consultant to the Portuguese Universities Foundation and to the Association of Universities of Portuguese Language, Advisor to the Portuguese Conference of Rectors, Advisor to the Secretary of State for Science, Technology and Education and Advisor to the Secretary of State of Rural and Forest Development. When he was a student, he was manager and president of student’s unions and a student national representative. He has a bachelor’s in law, a Master in Public Administration and is currently doing his PhD in Public Policies.