OECD/France International Conference on the Future of Higher Education - 8-9 December 2008, Paris


Higher Education 2030: What futures for quality access in the era of globalisation?


8-9 December 2008
Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers
292 rue Saint-Martin
Paris 75003

The OECD Centre for Educational Research and Innovation (CERI) will hold a public Conference on the Future of Higher Education on 8 9 December 2008 in Paris, at the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers (CNAM). The conference is organised with France, which currently holds the presidency of the European Union. The languages of the conference will be English and French.

The purpose of the conference is to present and discuss possible and desirable futures for higher education, drawing on analytical findings and stakeholder consultations carried out in the framework of the CERI project on the Future of Higher Education. This conference is also the final event to be held in 2008 marking CERI’s 40th Anniversary.

It is crucial to start imagining today the possible – as well as the desirable – roles for higher education in tomorrow’s societies. The conference will concentrate on the impact of demographic changes, technological innovations and globalisation on future higher education, with the underlying theme being that of how to foster quality access to higher education in the future. In view of this focus, the conference will present and discuss the project findings by addressing the following specific questions:

  • What kind of policy options and opportunities could be used to respond to the main challenges for future higher education access, attainment and achievement?
  • How does higher education expansion influence the reduction of social inequalities?
  • How could the future challenges of higher education financing be met?
  • In what different ways may globalisation influence the role and the governance of future higher education?

To address these questions, the conference will include active discussion by participants in a series of plenary and parallel workshop sessions, including a forward-looking stakeholder discussion. For further information, please see the provisional conference Agenda. Background documentation on the main themes of the conference will be made available on this website prior to the event.

There is no participation fee, but the participants shall cover their own costs of attendance.The participants are requested to register their attendance to the conference no later than 7 November 2008 by returning the electronic registration form (English/French) to Therese Walsh (tel. +33 (01) 45 24 96 89, at the OECD Secretariat. For further information regarding administrative and logistical matters, please see further practical information  or contact Therese Walsh at the Secretariat. Kiira Kärkkäinen (tel. +33 (0)1 45 24 91 71, will be happy to respond to any substantive questions you may have.

The conference will include two roundtables, one on social equity and the other on financing of tertiary education. Leading international experts will be interviewed during these sessions, to be held on 8 December (sessions 5 and 6 on the agenda). If there are any forward-looking questions you wish to be asked from the international experts during the roundtables, please indicate them in your registration form or e-mail your suggestions directly to Kiira Kärkkäinen ( at the OECD Secretariat.




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