Working assembly of the rectors of the universities members in ARUT, Iasi, 22-23 June 2019
The members of the Romanian Alliance of Technical Universities - ARUT, represented by the rectors and pro-rectors have been participated at the Gheorghe Asachi Technical University in Iaşi, from 6th to 8th of June 2019, at a working meeting. Prof.dr.eng. Claudia Popescu - President of CNFIS and Paul Baran, representative of the Romanian-American Foundation have been participated to the sessions works. Furthermore, Prof.dr.eng.arch. Marian Moiceanu, the rector of Ion Mincu University of Architecture and Urbanism in Bucharest has been also taking part to the session’s works as a guest.
The themes on the agenda were as followings:
- analysis of the admission allocation of places regarding the three academic cycles for the academic year 2019 - 2020;
- evaluation of doctoral schools and doctoral studies - current status and implications;
- Short presentation and analysis of the results regarding the FDI projects 2019 competition;
- entrepreneurial education in technical universities;
- analysis of the current status of ARUT grants.
The ARUT members express their dissatisfaction with the allocation of the tuition figure for this academic year. If the bachelor and master study cycle was based on the number of jobs occupied last year, this rule was no longer applied to doctoral studies, where most technical universities received fewer seats than those occupied in 2018, applying this time another rule which has consisted in the number of seats allocated in the previous year.
The use of this principle, regarding the distribution of the schooling figure by "history" (ie by the number of occupied places, respectively allocated in the previous years), had the effect, for the technical universities of ARUT, to allocate a number of places for admission, lower than in the previous year, in total disagreement with the provisions of the National Strategy for Tertiary Education in Romania 2015 - 2020, which states (art.71) "because most of the performing sectors in the Romanian economy are associated with the engineering sciences, it is absolutely necessary to correlate the current supply of tertiary education with the needs of the labour market ".
It can be noticed that, despite all the signals given by the economic environment regarding the ever-increasing number of graduates in the technical field, their number will be in the following period also decreasing.
Despite the steps taken in previous years, there is now no methodology for allocating the schooling number for admission to universities according to Romania's economic priorities, as well as on the basis of performance indicators of universities and doctoral schools.
The low number of places allocated to PhD studies in Engineering Sciences and their predominant distribution to socio-economic fields cannot be regarded (given that doctoral positions have a higher net funding) than an indirect way of financial support for certain universities .
ARUT calls on the National Council for Statistics and Prognosis of Higher Education (CNSPIS) and the Ministry of National Education to develop the methodology for allocating the budgeted places for the three cycles of study, given the priorities given by national strategies and labour market requirements, as well as by other performance criteria such as employment rate in the field of study, scientific results obtained - for the doctoral cycle.
The ARUT member states note with concern that the assessment of doctoral schools is in deadlock, although several universities (most of ARUT) have submitted their self-evaluation files within the deadline specified by the law (March 15, 2019). We call on the Romanian Agency for Quality Assurance - ARACIS - to start this process even with a pilot phase, our universities expressing their willingness to do so.
Some remarks were made on the first year of the ARUT grants for young teachers in our institutes to partly offset the lack of grant competitions launched by the Ministry of Research and Innovation. The possibility of introducing these grants in the category of national grants, from the minimum criteria established at CNATDCU level, has been discussed.
Following the analysis of the results of the FDI projects 2019 and the way they are running, ARUT members appreciate the increase in the budget allocated to it and considers it necessary to continue this competition. It is proposed to award larger amounts to winning projects, with an appropriate reduction in the number of projects that can be funded.
The aspects concerning the application of the entrepreneurial principles of the technical universities were discussed, on the basis of the partnership between them and the Romanian-American Foundation. In this respect, it was proposed to extend the number of teachers to participate in entrepreneurship training in the USA by co-financing internships, in order to create solid structures in universities to promote these principles among students and to contribute to the development of university management.
It has been agreed that the next ARUT meeting will take place in October 2019 in Bucharest.
Politehnica University of Timisoara
Politehnica University of Bucharest
Technical University of Cluj-Napoca
Gheorghe Asachi Technical University of Iasi
Radu Sorin VĂCĂREANU
Technical University of Civil Engineering of Bucharest
Comments on ”University Meta-ranking 2018. Romanian University Ranking”
At the end of 2018, the 2018 edition of University marketing appeared in the public space, a document aiming to establish a hierarchy of universities in Romania based on their position in the various international rankings. The methodology did not undergo any changes compared to the one used in the first edition (2016), the authors being the same and the corresponding author being Prof. Daniel David from UBB Cluj-Napoca. The objective of the meta-ranking exercise, though less rigid than the 2016 edition, remained the same: hierarchy with the aim of proposing national funding policies for universities to promote some of them among the "world class" in the top 500 positions globally.
The interest in global university rankings arose with the publication of the first edition of the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) by Professor Nian Cai Liu (Shanghai Jiao Tong University) in 2003. This ranking is the consequence of the policy initiated in 1998, by Jian Zemin to propel China among the great global research actors by creating "world class universities" comparable to the best Western universities. The great interest in this ranking has led to the creation of new global rankings and to the initiation in some countries (France, South Korea, Taiwan, India, etc.) of funding programs to stimulate the positioning of universities among the “world class".
ARUT Member Universities in the rank SCImago Institutions Rankings 2018
SCImago Institutions Rankings has published the global classification of higher education institutions and research practitioners for the year 2018. It is worth mentioning that SCImago Institutions Rankings ranked 25 Romanian universities (only those that meet the minimum criteria for the number of scientific papers published).
All five ARUT member universities (the Romanian Alliance of Technical Universities) are in the national rankings and four of them are among the top seven Romanian universities.
University performance evaluation in SCImago Institutions Rankings is based on the following criteria:
- the total of documents published and indexed in SCOPUS;
- percentage of total publications of those made with other institutions;
- the normalized value of citations per article;
- the percentage of the institution's publications in the top 25% of the top-rated journals in the field;
- the dispersal of the institution's scientific themes;
- the percentage of the institution's output in the most quoted 10% articles in that field;
- percent of the total items in which the main author is part of the institution;
- the total number of authors within the institution;
- total scientific production cited in patents;
- percentage of the total quoted in patents;
- Societal Impact
- the size of the web (the number of pages associated with the institution);
- total of external site visits of the institution's web site.
SCImago Institutions Rankings bases its analysis exclusively on information gathered from international databases, being, from this point of view, outside the influences of data provided by universities.
SCImago Institutions Rankings for the year 2018, globally, comprises 3232 universities, and based on rankings, the ARUT member universities are as follows:
- Politehnica University of Bucharest - first place at the national level - 459th place worldwide,
- Politehnica University of Timisoara - 3rd place nationwide - 512th place worldwide,
- Technical University of Cluj Napoca - 4th place nationwide - 515th place globally,
- Gheorghe Asachi Technical University in Iasi - the seventh place at the national level - the 535th place at the global level,
- Technical University of Civil Engineering Bucharest - 21st place nationwide - 608th place worldwide.
In terms of positioning in Eastern Europe (including Russia, Czech Republic Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Kosovo, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Georgia , Belarus, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Moldova), of the over 1000 higher education institutions, only 141 universities were classified, the ARUT member universities occupying the following positions:
- Politehnica University of Bucharest - 25th place,
- Politehnica University of Timisoara - 47th place,
- Technical University of Cluj-Napoca - 50th place,
- Gheorghe Asachi Technical University in Iasi - 63rd place,
- Technical University of Civil Engineering Bucharest - 126th place.
Working assembly of the rectors of the universities members in ARUT, Cluj-Napoca, 22-23 November 2018
Members of the Romanian Alliance of Technical Universities - ARUT, represented by rectors and vice-rectors, participated to a working meeting at the Technical University of Cluj-Napoca on 22-23 November 2018. At the sessions of the works also participated prof. eng. Ioan Ştefan Groza, PhD - State Secretary within the Ministry of National Education, prof. eng. Claudia Popescu, PhD - President of CNFIS, Ionuţ Stanamir - Executive Director of Romanian Commercial Bank, Reinhard Schuelke - Representative of "Wiley Researcher Academy", prof. Ioan Dumitrache, PhD - President and prof. eng. Radu Munteanu - Romanian Coalition for Engineering Education - "CREDING".
The subjects on the agenda were as follows:
- analyzing the possibilities of restructuring the Romanian technical higher education system in order to increase its quality and efficiency;
- analyzing the provisions of the evaluation methodology of doctoral studies and the implications thereof in the implementation process;
- identification of the possibilities of collaboration with the economic - financial environment;
- the analysis of the implications at the level of the institutions in ARUT as a result of applying the provisions of EGO 90/2017 - Article 15 on "the obligation to reduce by 10% the payments made in 2018 for the goods and services related to the maintenance and functioning of the institution".
Following the discussions and the debate on the above topics, the ARUT members decided to submit to the Ministry of National Education, for analysis, the project of restructuring of the engineering studies cycles which aims at better correlation of the Romanian higher education system with the European one and with labor market requirements. Modifications are proposed for the duration of the studies for the three cycles of bachelor’s degree, master and doctoral degrees, the titles and qualifications obtained, as well as the reduction of the number of study programs in the bachelor areas.
It was agreed that the Directors of Doctoral Studies Councils from the ARUT member universities should develop a model / template for the elaboration of the Internal PhD Assessment Report, a report to be applied in a unitary manner. Proposals for modifying / removing performance indicators used for the evaluation of doctoral studies areas that are judged to be irrelevant or impossible to determine with accuracy and which may lead to errors or distortions in the proper conduct of the course evaluation process.
The meeting also set the details of the collaboration with the Romanian Commercial Bank (BCR), signing in this regard the "Strategic Partnership Protocol ARUT - BCR", which specifies the objectives and directions of cooperation in the field of education and research between the two associative structures.
ARUT asks the MEN to take into account the real demand of the Romanian labor market when allocating the tuition figure for the academic year 2019/2020 and allocating the grants financed from the state budget for the doctoral studies to the Romanian labor market, considering that today there is a huge deficit of specialists in the field of engineering sciences.
ARUT calls on the Ministry of National Education to take all necessary steps to repeal / amend the provisions of Article 15 of the EGO 90/ 2017 on "the obligation to reduce by 10% the payments made in 2018 for the goods and services related to the maintenance and functioning of the institution" given that all member universities, and not only, face particularly serious problems, being virtually impossible to ensure the payment of all utilities, goods and services of strict necessity for the functioning of the institutions. Unanimously, universities have found that this is mainly due to the considerable increases in utility tariffs (gas, water, electricity, sanitation, etc.) in 2018 and, at the same time, the rise in prices and tariffs applied to the acquisition of goods and services, correlated with the increase in the minimum wage on the economy.
ARUT also expresses its surprise and dissatisfaction with the Romanian Government's reduction by 198 million lei of the budget allocated to MEN, given that the universities did not receive the necessary funds to pay the salary for the year 2018 and those remaining from the year past, in accordance with EGO 20/2016 and Law 85/2016, as well as with the decisions of the courts.
Radu Sorin VĂCĂREANU
Working assembly of the rectors of the universities members in ARUT, Timisoara, 03-04 May 2018
Timisoara, 03-04 may 2018
The members of the The Romanian Alliance of Technical Universities – ARUT, represented by the rectors and vice-rector, met between the 3rd and 4th of may 2018 in a working assembly at the Politehnica University of Timisoara. Among the guests that were present at the meeting were prof.univ.dr.ing. Harald Kainz, president of the Austrian Association of Technical Universities - TU Austria and rector of TU Graz, prof.univ.dr.ing. Petru Andea, Secretary of State in the National Education Ministry, prof.univ.dr.ing Claudia Popescu, president of CNFIS.
Discussions were held upon the possibilities of cooperation between ARUT and TU Austria. 11 years after the implementation of the Bologna cycle (time length of the study programs, bachelor degree, master degree, doctoral studies), there were made evaluations regarding the proposals linked to the Romanian technical higher education system. Nonetheless, part of the discussion were also the ARUT research projects and the mobility of students and teachers.
The meeting established the partnership between the Association of Technological Universities of Austria (TU-Austria) and the Romanian Technical Universities Alliance (ARUT). Following the establishment of this partnership, a Memorandum of Understanding will be signed. The role of the ,,Memorandum of Understanding’’ is to specify the directions of collaboration in the field of education and research between the two associative structures.
Taking into account the complexity of the problems regarding the reforms in the Romanian higher education, ARUT members decided to set up a working commission to analyze in detail all the issues involved in this process.
The next ARUT meeting will be held in Bucharest, in October. Until this next meeting, the Commission will present a restructuring project of the engineering study cycles for which discussions were held with representatives of the economic sector, professional associations, universities with a significant technical component in the country and abroad.
The information package on the inter-university ARUT research grants has been approved. The competition addressed to young people, teachers and researchers from the five technical universities will be launched on May 15, 2018, and the results will be released on September 20, 2018. The allocated amount is approximately 600,000€.
It was agreed that the Directors of Doctoral Studies Councils from the ARUT member universities should develop a proposal to assess the quality of doctoral studies with relevant and measurable quality indicators in agreement with both Romanian and foreign prestigious technical universities. The proposal is going to be presented at the ARUT meeting in October 2018.
The inter-university mobility regulation for university staff and students under the ARUT-Exchange program for the academic year 2018-2019 was approved.
President of ARUT
Politehnica University of Timisoara
Politehnica University of Bucharest
Technical University of Cluj-Napoca
“Gheorghe Asachi” Technical University of Iasi
|Radu Sorin VĂCĂREANU
The Technical University of Civil Engineering of Bucharest
The universities associated to The Romanian Alliance of Technical Universities (ARUT)- POLITEHNICA University of Bucharest (UPB), Polytechnic University of Timisoara (UPT), Technical University of Cluj Napoca (UTC), "Gheorghe Asachi" Technical University of Iasi (UTI) of Constructions Bucharest (UTCB) - constituted on June 24, 2015, bring to the Government's attention to the fact that education policies - especially those in the field of higher education - created major imbalances in the education system and were introduced without proper consultation of the relevant institutions with very serious risks for the near future of the national economy and education.
The establishment of the first alliance of technical universities in Romania
The leaders of the highest ranked technical universities in the country - Polytechnic University of Bucharest, Polytechnic University of Timisoara, Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, "Gheorghe Asachi" Technical University of Iasi and the Technical University of Civil Engineering in Bucharest - set up on Friday, June 24, 2016, The Romanian Alliance of Technical Universities (ARUT).
ARUT welcomes the financial and fiscal measures provided by the Emergency Ordinance of the 28th of June 2016
Last week, The Romanian Alliance of Technical Universities brought to the attention of the Government through an open letter the difficulties and risks that the higher education system is currently facing. The addition of a new point to Article 60 of Law no. 227/2015 whereby individuals are exempted from paying the income tax "for income from salaries and assimilated to salaries under Art. 76, para. (1) to (3) as a result of the development of applied research and / or technological development research "is a necessary and welcomed measure.
Founding members ARUT occupy leading positions in the SCIMAGOIR 2016 classification of Romanian university institutions
Four of the five founding universities of the Romanian Alliance of Technical Universities (ARUT) are among the top 10 universities in Romania, according to SCImago Institutions Rankings for 2016.
At 10 years after the implementation of the Bologna cycle in the technical higher education system
Members of the Romanian Technical Technological Alliance (ARUT), represented by the relevant rectors and vice-rectors, met on October 28, 2016, at a working meeting at the Politehnica University of Timisoara. Strategic aspects regarding the conditions and perspectives of the technical higher education were analyzed in the context of the "National Strategy for Tertiary Education in Romania 2015 - 2020", as well as the current problems faced by the Romanian universities.