WP3: Benchmarking

WP3 – Benchmarking draws on the initial mapping of the field and identification of examples of good practice (in Work Package 2) and is focused on the development and application of benchmark standards that can be used in self- or third-party assessment of the social responsibility of any university. Taking the unit of analysis as the institution, the benchmark standards are being developed on the basis of combining ISO 26000 (the International Standard on Social Responsibility with key elements of the 1997 UNESCO World Declaration on Higher Education, cross-referenced to other existing relevant benchmark standards.

In terms of the application of the standards to the examination of specific cases, and the tools to be used in this process, an initial exploratory benchmark visit focusing on one section of the standards was conducted in April 2013 and the further development of both the standards and the tools is now underway (June 2013). Further benchmarking visits are scheduled to be carried out between September and December 2013 and the Benchmarking Report completed by end March 2014.