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Thematic profile of European research in VET and HRD

EU projects and VETNET ECER papers in comparison

Introduction and summary 
 

In a preceding analysis of European research networks in vocational education and training (see presentation), both EU projects and VETNET ECER papers have already been investigated. While the network analysis focused on partnership activities in carrying out projects and producing papers, the present thematic analysis is concerned with the contents of these products.
 
 
The outcome of the thematic analysis of VET/HRD research in Europe may be summarised in the following points:
  • the focus of research is on processes (learning, work, competence etc) rather than systems;
  • the importance of processes, identified in papers, gradually increased over the six year period;
  • other aspects (actors involved, socio-economic framework and institutional environment) appear to be less relevant.

The projects and papers investigated in the thematic analysis are briefly described below: 

Projects have been supported by the European Commission via the Leonardo programme, the research framework programmes (FP4 and FP5) and similar programmes. Included in this analysis are 30 projects (from the period 1995 to 2003) carrying out research in European vocational education. The project coordinators and partners under contract are institutions only; however, in reality the formation of partnerships rests on individuals; this analysis is therefore concerned with partner and coordinator persons.

VETNET, the Vocational Education and Training Network, was set up in 1994, in the context of the European Educational Research Association (EERA). Its main function has been to organise the VETNET programme at the annual European Conference of Educational Research (ECER). The VETNET papers presented at ECER have been collected in annual proceedings (printed or on-line). The present thematic analysis of papers refers to the proceedings of the period 1998 to 2003 (six years, with 131 papers in total). 

The thematic analysis of projects and papers has been carried out by applying descriptors. These have been developed as part of the WIFO Monitor (see page on descriptors - return by using the back key!). For each paper or project, up to five descriptors have been selected (on average, three were sufficient or available for describing the contents concerned). In the figures, the descriptors are reproduced in abbreviated form (the main terms only) - the full presentation of the descriptors should therefore be viewed in parallel.

The details of the analytical results are presented in graphic form with explanatory text > see Figures

As major reference of the thematic analysis, complete collections of both the projects and the papers are supplied below:

- the EU projects (1995 to 2003) selected for analysis > see Annex ;

- the papers contained in the ECER VETNET proceedings 1998 to 2003 (chronological order)

In Mulder, Martin (ed.). European vocational education and training research.  Proceedings of the VETNET program at the ECER conference in Ljubljana, Slovenia, on 17-20 September 1998, pp. 151-158. 

In Lasonen, Johanna et al. (eds.). Conference Proceedings: ECER 99 Conference: EERA Network 2 programme; VETNET and AHRD; Lahti, Finland, 22-25 September 1999. Jyväskylä: Institute for Educational Research, University of Jyväskylä, pp. 141-158 [parallel Internet version by British Education Index; Education-line: Electronic texts in education and training].

In Manning, Sabine; Raffe, David (eds.). VETNET ECER 2000 proceedings: Current research in European vocational education and human resource development. Berlin: Wissenschaftsforum Bildung und Gesellschaft e.V. [http://www.ecer.wifo-gate.org].

In Manning, Sabine; Dif, M'hamed (eds.). VETNET ECER 2001 proceedings: Current research in European vocational education and human resource development. Berlin: Wissenschaftsforum Bildung und Gesellschaft e.V. [http://www.ecer.wifo-gate.org].

In Manning, Sabine; Griffiths, Toni; Oliveira, Teresa (eds). VETNET ECER 2002 proceedings: Current research in European vocational education and human resource development. Berlin: Wissenschaftsforum Bildung und Gesellschaft e.V. [http://www.ecer.wifo-gate.org]. 

In Manning, Sabine; Griffiths, Toni; Deitmer, Ludger (eds). VETNET ECER 2003 proceedings: Current research in European vocational education and human resource development. Berlin: Wissenschaftsforum Bildung und Gesellschaft e.V. [http://www.ecer.wifo-gate.org]. 
 

Full details of the individual projects and papers under investigation can be obtained from the database of the European Research Overview (ERO Base)* which is maintained as part of the CEDEFOP Research Arena (CEDRA) in the European Training Village (ETV).
*) Before clicking this link please make sure you are registered at the ETV !

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