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Promoting Creativity – cultivating the research mindset

9-10 June 2011, Hosted by Carlos III University of Madrid, Spain

The Fourth Annual Meeting of the EUA Council for Doctoral Education will look at the structures that universities can develop to ensure and promote individual development, creativity and innovation in doctoral education.

The goal of doctoral education is to nurture the innovative research mindset. Achieving this mindset requires the development of a high level of autonomy and critical thinking as well as the ability to think independently and creatively about highly complex issues. This innovative mindset is a precondition for the development of the knowledge society, and universities have a great responsibility to provide the training through research that cultivates the innovative mind.

The aim of this conference is to look at creative ways of providing structured doctoral education that promotes individual autonomy and critical thinking. When does a structure limit individual development, and when does it promote it? Structuring doctoral education does not necessarily imply that the space for individual development will be limited by institutional rules and regulation. On the contrary, structured doctoral education provides support and transparency that encourage the well-rounded development of the individual doctoral candidate. However, it is important that institutional responsibility does not take away the personal responsibility of the doctoral candidate for his or her research and career development. It is perhaps appropriate to speak about a ‘healthy tension’ between providing structures that form the doctoral programme and at the same time ensure that every doctoral candidate can embark upon his or her own path in research and career development.

The Annual Meeting of the EUA Council for Doctoral Education is the largest gathering of all stakeholders in the field of doctoral education in Europe. It presents thought-provoking ideas, illustrative case studies and debates on relevant topics in the field, bringing together university leaders, researchers, political actors, funding organisations, quality assurance agencies and all others interested in the development of doctoral education.

European University Association (EUA)

Brussels office:
Avenue de l’Yser, 24
1040 Brussels
Tel: +32 (0) 2 230 55 44

Geneva office:
114, Rue du Rhône
Case postale 3174
1211 Geneva 3
Tel: +41 22 552 02 96