Doctoral education in Europe has been in the focus of all strategical documents and has been perceived as the core university activity for more than a decade. It requires transformation and rethinking to be a drive of strong universities, in particular those which declare to be research institutions. Universities across Europe put an emphasis on providing institutional support in order to boost quality, bearing in mind not only programmes itself but the perspective of doctoral candidate and supervision. Along this line, majority of European universities adopted their doctoral system according to two major European documents, Salzburg Principles and Salzburg II Recommendations.
Research has become well-articulated effort globally, which requires more collaboration on both levels – national and international. The frontiers of knowledge are stimulated through excellence in research and good quality of doctoral education, in particular doctoral programmes and/or schools. The question is how to address challenges and risks in order to nurture the concept of the global research community. We recognize along with a high quality of research, the importance of well organized doctoral education system as well as interuniversity engagement in collaboration for common development. If the objective is to develop worldwide research community as a prerequisite for the knowledge society, there is a need to converge global system of doctoral education, while respecting divergence of different social and academic contexts.
From 2005 when doctoral education became the topic for higher education policy makers to nowadays when universities are taking more global role. It is clear that investments in education and research offer solutions for societal and economic development. Universities are facing many new challenges in ensuring and enhancing the quality of doctoral education, both on the European level and globally. In the presentation it will be discussed social and academic context relevant for good quaity doctoral education, while the emphasis will be given to a role of evaulation of doctoral schools and programmes, how to perform an evaluation process and what kind of evaluation.