Completed Projects




Project Team: Angelika Grabher-Wusche, Martin Unger, Iris Schwarzenbacher, Daiga Kuzmane, Berta Terzieva, Andra Precup

Project Duration: 2016-2018

Project Funding: with the support of all participating countries, co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the EU and six international partners

Project Information: The main aim of the project is to collate comparable data on the social dimension of European higher education. It focuses on the socio-economic background and on the living conditions of students. In the current round 28 countries are participating in the project. HER is responsible for the questionnaire, data quality and data presentation.

Project Website:


Diverse Excellence. Case Studies of Excellent Universities

Original Title: Vielfältige Exzellenz. Fallstudien exzellenter Universitäten

Project Team: Lorenz Lassnigg, Martin Unger, David Binder, Berta Terzieva, Bianca Thaler

Project Duration: 2017

Project Information: The term "excellence" has recently become more relevant, especially in the political higher education discourse. Several states launched excellence initiatives for HEIs, which try to meet the criteria of international university rankings. This study approaches the notion of excellence in higher education research through a brief historical outline, followed by case studies of six universities regarding different aspects of excellence and their transferability to the national situation.


Data Brochure "Gender Equality in Science and Research in Austria"

Original Title: Datenbroschüre "Gleichstellung in Wissenschaft und Forschung in Österreich"

Project Team: Angela Wroblewski

Project Duration: 2017

Project Commissioner: Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy (BMWFW)

Project Information (available only in German):

Im Zuge der Implementierung des Universitätsgesetzes 2002 bzw. dessen zentraler Steuerungsmechanismen (Leistungsvereinbarung, Wissensbilanz) wurde ein Monitoring aufgebaut, das die zentralen Indikatoren enthält, die in der Wissensbilanz zum Nachweis der Zielerreichung herangezogen werden. Die für Fragen der Gleichstellung relevanten Indikatoren wurden in einem eigenen Gender Monitoring zusammengefasst.

Bislang wurde das Gender Monitoring jedoch nicht für eine vergleichende Darstellung des Status Quo von Gleichstellung bzw. seiner Entwicklung zwischen Universitäten, Wissenschaftsbereichen oder zwischen dem Universitätssektor und dem FH-Sektor herangezogen. 

Ziel der Broschüre ist es, die im Gender Monitoring enthaltenen Informationen zu nutzen, um den unterschiedlichen Status Quo im Hinblick auf Gleichstellung an Universitäten und Fachhochschulen sowie Fortschritte in den letzten 10 Jahren aufzuzeigen. Dabei soll insbesondere auf die Bandbreite im Hinblick auf Gleichstellung eingegangen werden, um auch den Handlungsspielraum von Institutionen aufzuzeigen. Die Broschüre soll dazu dienen, den Gleichstellungsdiskurs anzuregen und verstärkt good practices zu diskutieren.


STEM at public universities, universities of applied sciences and the labour market. A baseline study

Original Title: MINT an öffentlichen Universitäten, Fachhochschulen sowie am Arbeitsmarkt. Eine Bestandsaufnahme

Project Team:  David Binder, Bianca Thaler, Martin Unger, Brigitte Ecker, Patrick Mathä, Sarah Zaussinger

Project Duration: 2016-2017

Project Commissioner: Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy

Project Information: There is an ongoing discussion regarding a shortage of graduates in the so-called STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). This baseline study aims to provide an information base against which to assess the supply of graduates in STEM-related subjects and their labour market status. It includes an extensive literature review, data analysis using various data sources (National HEI Statistics, National Labour Market Statistics, Student Social Survey) as well as expert interviews.

Research report in the IHS Repository (pdf in German)


Student Social Survey 2015

Original Title: Studierenden-Sozialerhebung 2015

Project Team: Sarah Zaussinger; Martin Unger; Bianca Thaler; Anna Dibiasi; Angelika Grabher-Wusche; Berta Terzieva; Julia Litofcenko; David Binder; Julia Brenner; Sara Stjepanovic; Patrick Mathä; Andrea Kulhanek

Project Duration: 2015-2017

Project Commissioner: Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy

Project Information: A broad based online-survey directed at students in Austria, carried out at regular intervals since the 1970s. The survey provides an overview of the study situation and living conditions of different groups of students. It covers a wide spectrum of topics relating to the social situation of students.

Project Website:

Twitter: @sozialerhebung


EUROGRADUATE - Feasibility study for a European graduate study

Project Team:  Martin Unger, Angelika Grabher-Wusche

Project Duration: 2013-2016

Project Funding: with the support of the Lifelong Learning Programme of the European Union

Project in Cooperation with:DZHW Hannover, Education Policy Centre Charles University Prague, ESU Brussels

Project Information:

The EUROGRADUATE feasibility study investigates the establishment of a sustainable study on Europe’s higher education graduates by exploring the requirements for a European graduate study, the existing capacities for monitoring European graduates, the point of departure at national level and the options for organizing and financing a European graduate study.

The IHS is part of an international consortium which is led by the German Center for Research on Higher Education and Science Studies (DZHW; Germany, lead partner) and completed by the European Policy Centre (EPC; Czech Republic) as well as the European Students’ Union (ESU; Belgium). Within this framework, the IHS is inter alia responsible for the research on the requirements on policy and stakeholder level for a European graduate study and for the quality assurance in the project.

Project website:


PL4SD (Peer Learning for the Social Dimension)

Project Team: Martin Unger, Iris Schwarzenbacher, Petra Wejwar, Sarah Zaussinger, Andrea Kulhanek, Georg Fochler

Project Duration: 2012–2015

Project Funding: Lifelong-Learning Programm (EACEA)

Project Information:Peer Learning for the Social Dimension provided policy-makers and practitioners with resources to develop effective measures for ensuring the social dimension in higher education. The three pillars of the project were a broad database of policy measures, country reviews of the social dimension in three countries (Lithuania, Armenia, Croatia) and two international conferences ( PL4SD collaborated closely with bodies of the Bologna process.

Project Website:

Twitter: @PL4SD
Project Report in the IHS Repository (pdf)


Student mobility in the EHEA

Project Team: Angelika Grabher-Wusche, Petra Wejwar, Martin Unger, Berta Terzieva, Julia Litofcenko

Project Duration: 09.2013–01.2014

Project Funding: Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy; a project for the international Bologna Follow-Up Group

Project Information: The project provides an in-depth look at the major factors promoting or more importantly impeding short-term stays abroad (credit mobility), as well as at the imbalanced distribution of long-term mobile students (degree mobility) in the EHEA.

Find out more:
Tables and interactive diagramms
Research report in the IHS Repository (pdf)


Dropouts ≠ Dropouts. Pathways after Leaving University

Project Team: Martin Unger, Bianca Thaler, Georg Fochler, Julia Litofcenko, Stephan Kratochwill

Project Duration: 2013–2014

Project Commissioner: Universities Austria (uniko)

Project Information: An analysis of the paths of students after dropping out of university, using data from the Labour Market Database.

Project Report in the IHS Repository (pdf in German)


best1: Studying with Impairments [in Germany]

Original Title: best1: beeinträchtigt studieren [in Deutschland]

Project Team: Sarah Zaussinger, Martin Unger, Petra Wejwar, Andrea Kulhanek

Project Duration: 2010-2012

Project in Cooperation with: DZHW, DSW

Project Information: A broad based online-survey directed at students in Germany, who have a disability or a long-term/chronic illness with a negative impact on their everyday life as a student.

Project website: (in German)


The Third Mission of universities and the Role of Higher Education in the Triangle of Education, Research and Innovation

Project Team: Lorenz Lassnigg, Jakob Hartl, Martin Unger, Iris Schwarzenbacher

Project Duration: 2012-2016

Project Comissioner: Stadt Wien (City of Vienna); OECD

Project in Cooperation with: Vienna University of Economics and Business (Michaela Trippl)

Project Information:

This project was conducted in two parts. First a study about the role of the Third Mission of universities was analysed conceptually and based on a case study of the region of Vienna. A main part was the analysis of the international discouses about the missions of university. As another part this conceptual analysis was augmented by an empirical qualitative study of attitudes and practices of universities located in the Vienna region. This part was commissioned by the City of Vienna.

Download the study report

A second part has added a critical review of the feasibility of the concept of the knowledge triangle (KT) as a basis for policy making in a broader view in the European and OECD region. The analysis provides an analytical framework and proceeds by looking at the three two-way-relationships included, and then tries to draw extrapolations towards the three-way relationship indicated by the KT. A focus is the ‘Third Mission’ of universities, that has various, and partly contradictory meanings. A basic challenge is that the concept requires a turn from the ongoing differentiation process in higher education towards (re)-integration. This part was commissioned by OECD.

Download the critical review


Clinical Research in Austria

Project Team: Thomas Czypionka, Martin Unger, Angela Wroblewski, Anna Dibiasi, Markus Kraus, Andrea Leitner, Gerald Röhrling

Project Duration: 2015-2016

Project Comissioner: Austria Science Board (ÖWR)

Project Information:

This baseline study aims to provide an information base against which to assess the clinical research landscape (employment, funding etc.) based on the Medical Universities in Graz, Innsbruck and Vienna.

An extended description of the project objectives and main results is available in German only.


Evaluation of the Introductory and Orientation Period (STEOP) in informatics at the Vienna University of Technology

Project Team: Anna Dibiasi, Andrea Kulhanek, Marlene Altenhofer, Elisabeth Frankus

Project Duration: 2015-2016

Project Comissioner: Vienna University of Technology, Faculty of Informatics

Project Information:

This evaluation of the Introductory and Orientation Period (STEOP) in the study field of informatics at the Vienna University of Technology aims to identify issues (with regards to the structure, organisation or content) and areas for improvement.


Evaluation of §14h University Admission Processes

Project Team:  Martin Unger, Bianca Thaler, Anna Dibiasi, Julia Litofcenko

Project Duration: 2014-2015

Project Comissioner: BMWFW

Information regarding the project objectives is available in German only.


Further projects

Further projects prior to 2016 can be found at