EMREX General Assembly in Oslo, 9th of May 2023
The 2023 EMREX Annual Assembly was held in Oslo as a physical meeting with courtesy of SIKT. The yearly report from 2022 was presented and accepted, just as the yearly plan for 2023. The election of the Executive Committee resulted in the re-election of Tor Fridell as Chairperson (see Get in touch with the Executive Committee).
Apart from usual agenda items there was a presentation by Riikka Rissanen of the project improving cross-border digital services for studying abroad in the Nordic and Baltic countries. The project has been initiated by the Nordic Council of Ministers and is described in a separate news item (see CBDSStudy initiative).
There was also a presentation of the DC4EU project (see Digital Credentials for Europe, DC4EU).
At the meeting we had the pleasure of welcoming new members. We especially welcome the new full member from Chile, Universidad de Talca!
• Universidad de Talca, Chile (Full member),
• Swedish Council for Higher Education, Sweden (Associate member),
• NARIC-Vlaanderen, Belgium (Associate member).
All documents can be found at https://emrex.eu/documents/.
EUNIS conference 2023
EMREX was presented at the European biggest conference on IT in higher education, EUNIS (https://www.eunis.org/eunis2023/). This year the conference was held in Vigo (Spain) 12-16 June. There were at least three presentations related to EMREX and all of them in some way outlined the new digital European landscape that is forming.
Tor Fridell presented the paper “The future is in your wallet – how EMREX plans interaction with the EUDI wallet”
The goal is to connect the EMREX-network to the EUDI wallet via participation in the DC4EU-project. Specifically the known EMREXians – SIKT in Norway and Ladok in Sweden – will develop bridge-functionality. The participation is expected to add value both to the EMREX-community and other organisations handling or in need of educational data.
Lluís Alfons Ariño Martin from Universitat Rovira I Virgili presented the paper “DC4EU – New paradigm for education”
The presentation gave an in depth knowledge of eIDAS 2, European Digital Identity Wallet (EUDI wallet) and architecture Reference Framework (ARF) and how the large scale pilot that the DC4EUproject (https://www.dc4eu.eu) project is developing will affect all aspects of the education sector.
Hermann Strack from Hochschule Harz presented “EU CrossBorder and OOT for HEI/Edu Workflows and Infrastructures with Interoperability, Standards and Security”
The presentation gave an overview of current efforts and strategies for digitalization of EU EGovernment, also looking at the different states and (central/de-central) structures in some EU Member States as well cross border, where already digital services and standards are used, like EMREX/ELMO and EWP. Against this background, there were proposals for some improvements for
Digital Credentials for Europe, DC4EU
One of the strategic goals of the EMREX Executive Committee is to aim for a wallet solution, preferably in cooperation with others in a large EU-funded project. The EMREX User Group (EUG) is not an entity that can be a legal partner in a project so partners from the EUG were encouraged to apply separately. One project with participants from the EMREX community, Digital Credentials for Europe (DC4EU, https://www.dc4eu.eu), has been approved for funding. The aim of the project is to create a working pilot installation of a digital wallet that conforms to the EUDI wallet framework. The project consists of over 80 partners from 23 countries and with a wide coverage of use cases.
The main characteristics of this project are:
• The EUDI Wallet is an element of hybridization for cross-use cases (Identity, Signature, Educational Credentials and Social Security).
• Hybrid bridges, to connect existing solutions based on other protocols (e.g. those used by the European Digital Credentials Initiative, EMREX, ELM, ELMO or eduGAIN in the educational field) with this new paradigm based on citizen empowerment and verifiable credentials.
Some of the members from the EMREX community, SIKT in Norway, the Ladok Consortium in Sweden and some single consultants, are part of the work package 5 in this project. They participate in two tasks, one is to create an EMREX gateway to the wallet and the other is to create conversion possibilities between the two data formats, ELMO and ELM. This way the wallet can transport educational data between any parties, not limited to higher education institutions.
Improved cross-border digital services for studying abroad in the Nordic and Baltic countries (CBDS-Study initiative)
CBDS-Study initiative aims at developing fluent cross-border digital services between the Nordic and Baltic countries in the field of studying abroad in higher education and upper secondary education.
At the moment, most digital services are planned and implemented within one country, and crossborder digital services are rather an exception. As digitalisation advances everywhere, it is also theexpectation of the citizens in the Nordic-Baltic Region that digital services work anywhere and at any time. Citizens interested in studying abroad in the neighbouring countries will expect smooth and flexible digital services before, during and after their study abroad period. The project will contribute towards making all by improving interoperability of existing digital systems and data, like using EMREX as a possible solution for sharing verified study data.
As an example of project’s current activities, CBDS-Study promotes EMREX at EAIE 2023 Rotterdam under the title Sharing digital study records smoothens processes and saves time and money.
More information about the project is available at:
Chilean University shares EMREX experience with other HEIs in Latin America
Anne Sennhenn, University of Göttingen
After successfully implementing EMREX at the University of Talca (UTalca) in Chile (as the first institution in Latin America), colleagues from Talca shared their experience with further higher education institutions in Chile and other Latin American countries during an international workshop.
The international workshop with the topic Digitalización del Proceso de reconocimiento académica para movilidad internacional (Digitization of the academic recognition process for international mobility) was organized by the UTalca together with the University of Göttingen (UGOE) and held online with simultaneous translation in English and Spanish.
Among others the workshop invitation was disseminated through the CRUCH and MetaRed networks and initiatives, which are international and cross-institutional stakeholders focusing on digitalization and internationalization. Representatives from many higher education institutions in Latin America were invited, with a specific focus on colleagues from IT departments and international offices. Finally, more than 30 interested HEIs from different countries followed the invitation and participated in the workshop.
In the first part of the workshop, Bettina Bube from UGOE showcased EMREX as a user-centered solution for electronically transferring student data. She elucidated the technical prerequisites for implementing EMREX and provided a step-by-step explanation of its functioning, using practical examples for better comprehension.
In the second part of the workshop, Alexis Rojas and Mario Seguel from UTalca shared their practical experience regarding the implementation process of EMREX. They also shared their future plans for utilizing EMREX to facilitate cross-institutional processes associated with both national and international student mobility.
Following that, a collective discussion took place among all participants regarding potential applications and benefits of EMREX. Various questions were raised regarding its potential to foster connections and collaboration among initiatives, across institutions and countries as well as to facilitate national as well as international student mobility.
Some useful links:
Bridge between EMREX and SDG/OOTS under development
In a cooperation between the EMREX Community and the Directorate General of the European Commission DG DIGIT, a bridge between EMREX and the Once-Only-Transport-System (OOTS) of the Single Digital Gateway (SDG) is currently being developed. The bridge continues the work that’s done on existing bridge between the SDG/OOTS and the European Car and Driving Licence Information System (EUCARIS).
It is planned that in future this bridge is for organizations in the OOTS-network to get data from the EMREX network. The first prototype is already finished and a presentation is planned at a hackathon in Brussels in October.
First Dutch meeting with EMREX clients
In April DUO hosted a first meeting with currently connected EMREX clients in the Netherlands. The participants are mostly private companies, such as (pre)-employment screening agencies, contractors in healthcare of semi-public bodies. Next to that also some new and interested organizations joined, so the meeting started with a small introduction of EMREX. This was followed by a short overview of current development in the Netherlands and within the EMREX network. The second part of the meeting was used for questions and feedback that resulted in a fruitful discussion and was helpful for participants who also learned from each other.
All contenders found it a very useful meeting and a follow-up is planned for fall this year.
ChatGPT answers the question:
Is EMREX a good system to use?
EMREX (Electronic Management of Student Data Exchange) is a system designed to facilitate the exchange of academic records and transcripts between educational institutions. It aims to simplify the process of transferring student data across borders and institutions, promoting efficiency and interoperability.
As an AI language model, I don’t have personal opinions. However, I can provide you with some information about EMREX to help you evaluate its merits.
EMREX has gained recognition and support from various organizations and institutions involved in higher education. It is backed by the European Commission and has been implemented in several European countries. It aims to address the challenges and administrative burdens associated with the manual exchange of student records, reducing the time and effort required for data transfers.
Some potential benefits of EMREX include:
1. Improved efficiency: EMREX automates the process of exchanging student records, reducing administrative work and processing times. It allows for quick and secure transfer of data between participating institutions.
2. Enhanced mobility: The system enables smoother student mobility by simplifying the recognition of prior learning and facilitating credit transfers. It can support students who want to pursue studies across different institutions or countries.
3. Interoperability: EMREX follows standardized formats and protocols, promoting compatibility between different systems and ensuring the seamless exchange of data. This interoperability is essential for efficient data sharing among participating institutions.
4. Data security and privacy: EMREX emphasizes data protection and privacy, ensuring that student records are transferred securely and in compliance with relevant regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
While EMREX has the potential to streamline administrative processes and improve data exchange in the education sector, its effectiveness may depend on various factors, including the level of adoption among institutions, compatibility with existing systems, and support from relevant authorities. It’s important to note that the implementation and experience of using EMREX may vary across different countries and institutions. Before adopting any system, it is advisable to research and consider the specific requirements and circumstances of your institution or organization.
Overall, EMREX appears to offer advantages in terms of efficiency, mobility, interoperability, and data security. However, it is recommended to conduct a thorough evaluation and possibly seek feedback from institutions or organizations that have already implemented EMREX to determine its suitability for your specific needs.
ChatGPT answers the question:
EMREX and Europass are two transport systems for educational data. What are the advantages and disadvantages of these two systems in comparison?
Both EMREX and Europass are systems designed to facilitate the exchange of educational data, but they serve different purposes and have distinct advantages and disadvantages. Here’s a comparison of the two systems:
1. Efficiency: EMREX aims to automate and streamline the exchange of academic records, reducing administrative burden and processing times.
2. Interoperability: It follows standardized formats and protocols, promoting compatibility between different systems and facilitating seamless data exchange.
3. Mobility: EMREX supports student mobility by simplifying the recognition of prior learning and facilitating credit transfers across institutions and countries.
4. Data Security: The system emphasizes data protection and privacy, ensuring secure and compliant transfer of student records.
1. Adoption and Compatibility: EMREX’s effectiveness depends on the level of adoption among participating institutions and their compatibility with the system. It may not be universally implemented.
2. Regional Focus: EMREX has primarily been implemented in European countries, which means its availability and support might be limited outside of this region.
3. Technical Requirements: Implementing EMREX may require institutions to make certain technical adjustments or integrations with their existing systems.
1. Standardization: Europass provides a standardized format for documenting and presenting educational qualifications, skills, and experiences, making it easier for individuals to create a consistent and comprehensive profile.
2. Portability: Europass allows individuals to store their educational data in a centralized platform and share it with potential employers, education institutions, or other parties when needed.
3. European Recognition: Europass is recognized and supported by European institutions, employers, and education providers, which can enhance the visibility and recognition of individuals’ qualifications within Europe.
1. Limited Scope: Europass focuses primarily on the presentation of educational qualifications and skills, and it may not cover all aspects of academic records or transcripts.
2. Data Completeness: The accuracy and completeness of the information in Europass profiles depend on individuals’ input, and there may be variations in the level of detail provided.
3. Compatibility: While Europass aims to ensure compatibility with various systems and formats, integration with specific institutional systems or regional frameworks may require
It’s important to note that the advantages and disadvantages mentioned above are based on general observations and may not capture the full extent of the systems’ functionalities or limitations. The effectiveness of each system can also vary depending on the specific context of implementation and user requirements.
Get in touch with the EMREX Executive Committee
The Executive Committee consists of the following persons. Don’t be afraid to contact any of us.
• Igor Drvodelic, Croatia, firstname.lastname@example.org
• Tor Fridell, Sweden, email@example.com (Chairperson)
• Janina Mincer-Daszkiewicz, Poland, firstname.lastname@example.org
• Jan-Joost Norder, the Netherlands, email@example.com
• Kimmo Rautio, Finland, firstname.lastname@example.org
• Geir M Vangen, Norway, email@example.com
• Arn Wassman, Germany, firstname.lastname@example.org
Some members of the EMREX Executive Committee at the EUNIS conference in Vigo