On March 11 and 12 2010 the Education ministers of 46 European countries will celebrate the 10-years anniversary of the Bologna-process in Vienna and Budapest. Considering the current situation and the ongoing protests in many European Universities this celebration is a mockery for all of us.
Not only has the Bologna-process clearly failed to achieve the agreed goals of improved mobility; it also led to more restrictions for students and their studies and to greater social selection of access to higher education in general.
The fact that the entire process is based on the understanding of education as only producing workforce dictated by the market is reflected in the agreed goals. Therefore our aim is not only to measure success or failure of the Bologna-process but furthermore to question the process and its foundations itself. Master and PhD as elite programs, which especially exclude women, introduction of study fees and under-financing of universities as well as de-democratization within the university system are obvious symptoms.
The difficult financial situation increases the corporate influence on education and scientific research. The orientation of teaching towards corporate interests does not only affect universities, but the entire education sector in general. Hence the possibilities of self-determined and critical learning are restricted.
In view of this disastrous situation we don't see any reason to celebrate the Bologna-process. The European-wide protests of students, teachers and others show that the economization of education is directed against their interests.
Therefore the week from 8 to 12 March 2010 shall accompany this conference with demonstrations, strikes and blockades as well as a counter-conference, where we are going to discuss European education policy, as well as the common goals of our protests.
We formed four groups, which focus on different aspects of the event:
- Demonstration/blockade: for the time the ministers are holding their meeting we are organizing a demonstration (Thursday, march 11). Different ideas of blockades are being discussed.
- Strike: using the occasion of this event, we are planning to go on a university-strike in cooperation with the teaching staff for at least two days.
- Counter-conference: in this part of the event, we want to work on, discuss and exchange experiences openly about the bologna process and possible better education policies.
- International mobilization: a big part of this event should also be the gathering of all the protesters from different countries and fields in order to work on a common strategy.
We want this event to be organized and held by all protesters together. This is why we are calling for your participation not only at the event itself, but also during the preparations (eg.: input at the counter-conference, etc.).
Together we will show that we do not agree with the celebration of a process, that limits education to the production of human capital!
This protest and its further development lives from our participation!