Cooperation Agreement between AACSB and NVAO06/10/2020

NVAO and AACSB International signed a renewed cooperation agreement for the duration of the current quality assurance system in Flanders (until 2025). This guarantees that all of the external assessments in Flanders by AACSB are carried out in accordance with the Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area (ESG).

Increasing the efficiency and reducing the administrative burden for institutions in the accreditation process of their programmes

In Flanders, recognised higher education institutions can give account of the quality of their programmes through the involvement of another quality assurance agency. In case this agency is not included in the European Quality Assurance Register for Higher Education (EQAR), it can sign a cooperation agreement with NVAO guaranteeing that its external assessments in Flanders are carried out in accordance with the Standards and Guidelines for Quality Assurance in the European Higher Education Area (ESG). For example, agencies party to such a cooperation agreement are obliged to include an appropriately trained student and a member with thorough knowledge of higher education in Flanders in their expert panels. NVAO offers this possibility to sign a cooperation agreement as it cannot be expected of all international quality assurance agencies to adapt their often-world-wide applicable standard methodologies to an exclusively European context. 

NVAO and AACSB signed a cooperation agreement. AACSB assesses and accredits business schools and business programmes across the world. This is already the second cooperation agreement that is signed between both parties and is valid for the duration of the current quality system in Flanders (until 2025).

Dirk Broos, vicechair NVAO: “By signing these cooperation agreements with organisations that are not registered in EQAR, we aim to increase the efficiency and reduce the administrative burden for institutions in the accreditation process of their programmes.” 

“This partnership has proven highly effective for AACSB, NVAO, and business schools in Flanders since its inception in 2015. Through this renewed agreement we commit to future collaboration and a mutual pursuit to ensure the highest quality business education worldwide,” said Stephanie Bryant, executive vice president and chief accreditation officer at AACSB.

Institutions rely on external agencies for various reasons. For example, they want to benchmark with similar programmes abroad or it leads to a quality mark that is highly valued internationally. This often concerns programmes within a specific study domain such as healthcare or management.

Only if the external assessments concerned are carried out in accordance with this agreement, the resulting assessment reports will be deemed admissible to apply for accreditation by NVAO.


About AACSB International 

Established in 1916, AACSB is the world’s largest business education alliance, connecting educators, learners, and business to create the next generation of great leaders. With a presence in more than 100 countries and territories, AACSB fosters engagement, accelerates innovation, and amplifies impact in business education. Learn how AACSB is transforming business education for a better society at aacsb.edu. 

Signing ceremony AACSB-NVAO

Jasper Delanoy Communicatieadviseur

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