Pleased to say that on  the 21st of October 2021 the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) has received a prize from CRUE-TIC ( Conference of Rectors of Spanish Universities). This was in recognition of a successful collaboration we have been having in higher education for the past 4 years. Since I am the lead of this collaboration (and main workforce from the JRC side), I am delighted with this prize!

Together with CRUE, the JRC revised the questions of the higher education instrument for self-reflection and added a 7th area, on open education. Then, a pilot of the instrument took place, involving 10 Spanish universities and 500+ lecturers, followed by a psychometric analysis of the new instrument for validation.  Finally, the full implementation nationwide took place in Spain, designed as a representative survey of over 5 thousand university lecturers, from 51 universities, followed up by focus groups on the results obtained. This revised self-reflection for higher education is based on two of our frameworks: DigCompEdu and OpenEdu. With this new version (V.2021), we continue to help academics understand and visualise their perceptions of their own digital competence but also provide them with a report which offers tips for them to level-up. It is a way of supporting them in creating paths for continuous professional development and increased digital competence, as well as their universities, since they have a picture of their staff perceptions and are thus equipped to come up with appropriate institutional policies.

For example, the JRC also collaborate on large scale with Metared (Fundación Universia) on the digital competence of lecturers in Latin America, having carried out a similar study from CRUE, of which we had 34 thousand responses in 7 countries in 2020-2021. Our collaboration with CRUE has had policy impact at national level in Spain, to the extent our DigCompEdu framework figures in the policy strategy developed by the Spanish Ministry of Universities based on the European recovery fund.

In addition, CRUE has supported the dissemination of our reports, particularly Blockchain in Education, which inspired the ‘Diploma Use Case’ of the EBSI initiative of DG Connect. They have also, in the early days of our collaboration, engaged with the communication around DigComp and DigCompOrg across Spain.

A joint JRC-CRUE report will be published early next year, in English and Spanish, bringing the details of this collaboration, the methodology used, the results of the study, and policy recommendations. In addition, this new version of the higher education instrument will soon be made available in the Check-In tool, both in English and Spanish. Watch out for further news!


From left: Juan Gomez, President of CRUE-TIC, Pedro Ruiz, Executive Secretary of CRUE, above Mikel Landabaso, Director of JRC Growth and Innovation, Ioannis Maghiros, Head of Unit B4 JRC, below Andreia Inamorato JRC Senior Researcher and lead of the CRUE collaboration at the JRC, and Yves Punie, vice-head of unit B4 of the JRC.