October 2, 2023

Collaborative Review and Consultative Workshop for Tunisian Research Governance


As part of the ongoing efforts within the framework of the DIRASA project, representatives from 13 Tunisian universities, the Tunisian Ministry of Higher Education (MESRS), the National Agency for the Advancement of Scientific Research (ANPR), and European partners were hosted by the University of Monastir, and gathered in Monastir, Tunisia, on September 28-29 for a mid-term review and consultative workshop.

Hmaid BEN AZIZA, Secretary General of UNIMED – Mediterranean Universities Union, highlighted the legacy of the SAGESSE project and the importance it played in university governance while emphasizing the importance of the DIRASA project and its future impacts. “DIRASA is of fundamental importance for coordinating the efforts of universities at the national level for better governance of research in Tunisia and its better visibility at the international level,” he said in his opening remarks.   

The primary purpose of this meeting was to provide an opportunity for the project consortium to collectively assess the progress made in the DIRASA project, identify challenges, and discuss plans for the project’s next phase. The event fostered collaborative discussions among project partners.

Forming four focus groups, the partners explored the various aspects of research governance:

  • Research Democracy: This group examined the democratic aspects of research governance, exploring ways to ensure equitable and inclusive research processes.
  • Pilotage: The second group tackled issues related to project management and oversight, seeking to enhance the coordination and direction of research activities.
  • Efficiency: the third group discussed strategies to improve the efficiency of research processes, with a focus on streamlining procedures and optimizing resource utilization.
  • Coherence: the fourth group discussed coherence in research governance, aiming to establish a unified and consistent approach to research management.

Following these focused groups, a proactive session of questions and debates ensued, fostering an environment of robust engagement. Their discussions were informed by knowledge sharing, experiences, and proposals, which are expected to contribute to the finalization of the “Final Report on the State of Research Governance in Tunisia.”

The productive exchanges during the meeting brought the project consortium one step closer to achieving the goal of enhancing the governance of university research in Tunisia. This goal is pursued by strengthening the capacity of the project partners to engage with national research priorities and by fostering dialogues and scientific cooperation within Tunisia’s national research system. The meeting has also afforded the consortium an invaluable opportunity to assess the project’s advancement, pinpoint any encountered challenges or hurdles, deliberate on strategies for the forthcoming project phase, and served as a means to fortify partnerships and significantly advance research initiatives in Tunisia.

For more information about the DIRASA project, please visit the official website: https://dirasa.eu/