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Minister: Students should adapt

As students march against the 10th anniversary of the Bologna Process in Vienna, Austrian science minister states that they »must adapt«

Bologna education reforms will greatly contribute to the international mobility of young people and will »create unlimited opportunities« for Austrian university students. This is according to Austrian Minister of Science Beatrix Karl at the conference celebrating ten years of Bologna process reforms, writes Chinese news site

A unified European education area will allow students to have more flexible access to further education opportunities, Beatrix Karl, said.

She added that in a globalised world Austrian students »must adapt to international competition« .

Commodification and overcrowding

Students from Austria – and other European countries are currently demonstrating and blockading the conference.

They say that Bologna represents a commodification of higher education, and protest overcrowding in Austrian universities and fewer resources per student.

Georg Winkler, principal of the University of Vienna, said that the Bologna Process has placed additional financial pressures on universities in Austria. According to him, the last six years has seen the budget of the University of Vienna increased by 5 per cent while the number of students rose by 25 per cent,

Student summit

As well as taking to the streets to protest, students are holding their own Bologna Summit Friday and Saturday in Vienna.

In a just-released monthly newsletter the European Students’ Union ESU calls on Europe’s education ministers to acknowledge the protests and follow up by giving students better possibilities to decide on the present and future of their own education.

Chair of the union, Ligia Deca, writes that the student summit preceding the ministerial conference would »further promote students’ view on the reform agenda but also bring the students’ contribution to the ministers«.