On 15 June 2023, colleagues from five Italian Universities involved as full partners in the Joint European Degree Pilot projects (EDLab, ED-AFFICHE, SMARTT) met with representatives of the Italian Ministry of Higher Education, ANVUR (Italian National Agency for the Evaluation of Universities and Research Institutes) and CIMEA. The aim of the meeting, organised by the University of Padua and hosted by ANVUR in Rome, was to present the three projects to Italian National Authorities and discuss current policy trends, as well as obstacles and barriers to the accreditation and successful implementation of joint programmes in the Italian context. Representatives of the Ministry, ANVUR and CIMEA stressed the relevance of joint programmes (and joint degrees) as a strategic priority in the European Higher Education Area, central to the overall vision of the EU’S European Universities Initiative. The importance of combining teaching and research, including by means of joint programmes, was also mentioned.
Thanks to the open approach of national authorities, the meeting represented an important step towards national coordination around European degrees and joint degree labels. Further consultations with Italian national authorities will be organised in the coming months by EDLab and its partner projects.