New resources for institutional action-planning and for developing higher education policy for community engagement


The SHEFCE project (Steering Higher Education for Community Engagement), which was implemented from 2020 to 2023 and funded through the Erasmus+ programme, has been completed and has published its key results. The SHEFCE project involved parallel actions at the local level, national level and European level:

  • At the local level, the project applied robust methodologies for developing high-quality action plans to improve community engagement at 5 partner universities in Europe (Free University of Brussels; Technological University Dublin, University of Rijeka, University for Continuing Education Krems, University of Girona). The action plans are now available in the section “Engaged Universities”.
  • At the national level, the project produced in-depth analyses, organised stakeholder consultations and produced policy recommendations to support evidence-based policy-making to enhance community engagement in higher education in 5 countries (Austria; Belgium/Flemish Community; Croatia; Ireland; Spain/Catalonia), as well as at the EU level.
  • At the European level, the project developed the online platform and published methodologies for institutional action-planning for community engagement (available on the “Toolbox” section of platform) and for analysing system-level higher education policies, which are now open access and be used by stakeholders throughout Europe (available in the “Knowledge Hub” section of the platform).

The activities of SHEFCE project will be sustained and further developed through the follow-up project SPACE – Supporting Professionals and Academics for Community Engagement, which is also funded through the Erasmus+ programme from 2023 to 2026.

Photo credit: by Scott Graham on Unsplash

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