No 2007/04
  Just published: The directory of doctoral dissertations
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  Dear Colleague

First of all, many thanks to those of you who provided information for the new directory of doctoral dissertations! Several requests were posted, starting with the L&W Newsletter 2006/07, addressing about 800 researchers in the field of HRD and VET throughout Europe. The responses received so far have produced data for an initial directory comprising 40 doctoral dissertations from 10 European countries (see link below).

Directory of doctoral dissertations: www.ddd.wifo-gate.org

The major objectives of this directory are to identify new research topics (see Thematic overview) and to present the researchers involved (see main Directory, arranged by author, and Index of tutors). In addition, the supervisory institutions are presented, sorted by country (see Index of countries/ institutions).

The dissertations collected in this directory include examples of the following thematic areas:

    * Education - Higher education - Adult education (each incl. vocational component)
    * Vocational education (initial and/or continuing)
    * Human resource development related to the labour market
    * Human resource development in organisations - Human resource management - Knowledge management
    * Work and learning (related to HRD/VET)

A large proportion of the dissertations belongs to the last group - work and learning. In fact, the term 'learning' appears in every second dissertation across the five groups! This preliminary outcome corresponds to earlier findings obtained from an analysis of papers presented at the European conferences of VET (ECER) and HRD, which identified learning as the major theme of research (see WIFO Monitor: Figure 2).

The authors of dissertations, whether junior or senior researchers, may include (future) promoters of the research community. And the tutors, who supervise the dissertations, often play a key role in developing schools of research within the broader community. Furthermore, involvement in European projects and networks may have a stimulating effect on doctoral research. This is particularly evident from the CROSSLIFE  pilot study programme (2007-2008), which aims to enhance Masters and PhD courses run by partner institutions forming a cross-cultural international research network.

Altogether, doctoral dissertations are a vital component in building the future of HRD and VET research in Europe. This directory aims to extend public access to these efforts. You are welcome to contribute to this initiative!

Kind regards
Sabine Manning

PS: This issue of the L&W Newsletter is being sent to an extended mailing list including all authors and tutors referred to in the directory.

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 Editor: Sabine Manning © WIFO