work in higher education was encouraged by Member States, in
particular from developing countries, at the 31st General Conference
of UNESCO (15 October to 2 November 2001).
this field we cannot avoid addressing the agendas of globalisation
and trade in higher education because the world has responded
with enthusiasm to the idea that UNESCO is the natural forum
for discussion of the discussion of these issues. We look
forward to developing the UNESCO Global Forum on International
Quality Assurance.", stated John Daniel, Assistant Director-General
for Education, in his response to the debate in Commission
II (Education) of this Conference.
Global Forum on International Quality Assurance and the Recognition
of Qualifications would centre on using UNESCO functions as
a laboratory of ideas, a standard setter, a clearing house,
a capacity-builder, a catalyst for international cooperation
and building on existing work. Central to this would be to
strengthen UNESCO's role as a facilitator-broker, for developing
international frameworks and bringing together the different
actors and stakeholders of the higher education sector.
need to establish a Global Forum on International Quality
Assurance was first initiated by the Expert
Meeting on the Impact of Globalization on Quality Assurance,
Accreditation and the Recognition of Qualifications (10-11
September 2001, UNESCO Paris). This recommendation was also
supported by the Meeting of the Bureau of the 1998 World Conference
Follow-up Committee (22 October 2001, UNESCO Headquarters).
Bureau Meeting stressed UNESCO's leadership role in the debate
of globalization, commercialisation and higher education.
The question of developing quality assurance mechanisms for
both public and private institutions in higher education was
particularly highlighted. The Bureau also recommended that
links be kept between the different bodies involved in UNESCO
higher education activities as the multitude of 'Global Forums'
tended to create confusion.
31st session of the General Conference of UNESCO (15 October
- 2 November 2001), adopted UNESCO's Programme and Budget