ESC-Tension Project Update

The ESC-tension project, the European Student Card Extension and Adoption project funded by the EU under the Erasmus+ KA2 (Strategic Partnerships for the innovation in Higher Education), after the kick-off meeting back in November 2020 and its first platform and common methodology deployment phases, is now finally producing first tangible results as well as other relevant developments.

The project recently started thanks to the efforts of the Italian coordinator, Fondazione ENDISU, and the other six members of the consortium aim at providing the HEIs with concrete tools to promote the adoption of the ESC both in local and national contexts within the European Union.

The project activities are currently focused on the realization of the second Intellectual Output, specifically on the creation of the so-called Profiling Tool which will be made available on the website and will generate a sort of “As-Is Report” framing the as-is scenario of the Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) concerning their use of the campus cards and the ESC. The mentioned as-is scenario is issued by a Multidimensional Matrix taking into account two axes: the card (physical or digital format) and the related services, as far as organizational/administrative and technical/technological aspects are concerned, with a focus on local and national implementation contexts.

This output is led by ECCA – European Campus Card Association, closely supported by the project coordinator and the other core partners: the Italian EDUCatt – Ente per il Diritto allo Studio dell’Università Cattolica, the University of Malaga from Spain, the Humboldt University of Berlin from Germany, the John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin from Poland and the European Students’ Union located in Brussels, Belgium.

The Profiling Tool is a crucial component of the project as it will allow the HEIs, interacting with the further tools to be developed by the project, to clearly and immediately identify and customize the wished-to-be scenario through a roadmap. That roadmap indeed will provide the HEIs with the instructions for the ESC standards implementation and its adaption on their campus cards, as well as the student recognition and access to the on-campus services.

A further relevant project result is represented by the As-Is Report, a document that pictures the European HEIs state of the art from an ESC-centred point of view and that, at a later stage, will represent a useful tool to compare HEIs and main stakeholders at a national and international level.

Last but not the least, the Profiling Tool will have a double goal as it contributes from one side to the ESC adoption in the HEIs and from the other to bring concrete benefits to the students in the form of ESC-compliant services. Indeed, such a tool will make them aware of the services accessible through the ESC and, therefore, it will be easier for the students to benefit from them.