- The Network 2 (VETNET) has a tradition of being the umbrella network for European research in vocational education and training (VET). It provides the main European forum for sharing knowledge and discussing on research results in the field of VET. At ECER 2011 over 100 presentations from 15 countries were presented in ca.30 sessions (with ca. 120 participants).
- According to the feedback, the presentations and discussion were considered productive and well prepared. The VETNET programme at ECER 2011 was considered as successful and well balanced. This was expressed by the ca. 50 participants of the VETNET General Assembly alongside the conference in Berlin. Most presentations met the standards set by the review process. Also this year many EU-projects (ca. 40) funded by the LLP programme were using the sessions to present and discuss their research outcomes.
- Ca 35 of the 90 presenters uploaded their presentations in advance on the VETNET page and they are now available as the VETNET Proceedings under the following URL: www.b.shuttle.de/wifo/vetnet/ecer11.htm
- Some of the sessions addressed research issues and policy issues that had been discussed at earlier years of the VETNET network. There was a need to pay more attention to the history of European VET research and to the possibility to revisit the prior results, findings and lessons learnt. There were certain research areas that were not very strongly covered (such as the use of ICT and new media in VET or the development of competences in vocational and workplace learning).
- There was one VETNET session in which video materials were used extensively. However, since this was advertised as ‘paper session’, it was not attracting a wide audience (although the topic was relevant for several networks). There seems to be an issue, how to develop more active and participative sessions (demonstrations and interventions) and how to present them in the work programme.
- The fact that the opening session of VETNET was transformed into a participative workshop (after the short inputs) was praised by the participants. The fact that the social event was organised as a joint event with another network, was considered as a good idea. Over 100 people attended the social session at the Habbel wine cellar and can be seen also as an good idea to share in and with over networks on a informal basis.
- There were some sessions in the VETNET programme that were relevant for several networks but they were not advertised as joint sessions (although there had been plans for such ‘code-sharing’). There is a need to pay more attention to such collaboration at an earlier stage of preparing the ECER 2012 in Cadiz.
- The VETNET website provides a basis for more effective knowledge sharing (e.g. links to resources and to events) and for social networking (e.g. discussion on forthcoming events and project plans). Also, the VETNET conference folders should be used to share the presentations (not only the papers).
- The conference venue (Freie Universität Berlin) was good for organising the conference itself but the counter-side was that the hotels were far away. For the future conferences it would be an improvement if the participants can be accommodated closer to the hotels.