Slovenian parliament accepted the New national strategy for higher education in Slovenia 2030 (Resolucija o nacionalnem programu visokega šolstva 2030). Among the key ambitious goals are to raise the level and quality of higher education, increase the responsiveness, flexibility, and attractiveness of the higher education system in relation to the needs of the economy, and society as a whole.
My foreword to the strategy
Knowledge is becoming an increasingly important asset of the developed world, so higher education institutions (HEI), whose primary mission is to acquire, disseminate, and apply knowledge, will only strengthen their position in the future society. Despite digitalization, which is unstoppably penetrating all segments of our lives, humans will continue to maintain their central position in generating knowledge – at HEI, primarily in the roles of researchers, teachers, and their other coworkers. In order to achieve innovative, pedagogical, research, and artistic excellence as well as global competitiveness, it will be necessary to provide HEI employees with a competitive, stimulating, and safe working environment in which they will joyfully create and disseminate scientific knowledge. In contrast to the abundance of ‘instant information’, the production of scientific knowledge is a ‘long-distance run.’ So a fundamental challenge in the future will be maintaining a stable working environment in an increasingly changing world. Experiences from the industry demonstrate that survival and growth in dynamic environments require a change of the business models, supported by a high level of digitalization. These may also significantly contribute to lowering the administrative burden of HEI staff and redirecting their capacities towards scientific and artistic activities. By considering local specifics and opportunities, the competitiveness of higher education also requires strong integration into the global environment, where the challenges of preserving national identity and language will continue to persist. Outlines of higher education in the Republic of Slovenia in 2030 may be foreseen in the Resolution on the National Programme of Higher Education 2030. However, it will probably be necessary to endure quite a few social and technological upheavals until then. Higher education in the Republic of Slovenia, the journey to the destination of 2030 will be full of known and unknown challenges, but it will be anything but boring. Good luck!
I am grateful and honored for being part of the group of eleven experts, who prepared this essential higher education document over the past 11 months.