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DIPF Speech at Meeting of eleven Heads of State

September 22, 2015. Professor Dr. Marcus Hasselhorn from DIPF on invitation by the German Federal President Joachim Gauck today introduces the topic „Education and Participation“.

As this year’s host of the Arraiolos Group the German Federal President Joachim Gauck is welcoming ten other European Heads of State in Germany for two days (21/22 September). Today they are meeting in Erfurt to discuss the topic „Education and Participation“. The introduction is presented by Professor Dr. Marcus Hasselhorn, Executive Director of the German Institute for International Educational Research (Deutsches Institut für Internationale Pädagogische Forschung – DIPF).

In his talk Professor Hasselhorn emphasizes that education can be an extremely effective Instrument to promote participation. Currently, however, the European education systems are facing the challenge of providing all members of society equal access to opportunities and supporting the integration of refugees. In this context the educational researcher identifies three central points on the basis of current scientific evidence:

  1. In the area of early childhood education the decisive foundation for participation and thus for social and individual development is established.
  2. With respect to reducing social and migration related inequalities there is a need for optimizing the education systems of all European states.
  3. Research evidence should not just be utilized when designing educational reforms to accomplish more equality of opportunities. The implementation of measures should also be evaluated scientifically.

After the speech the Arraiolos Group will debate about the topic. The group of non-executive heads of state of the EU, named after a Portuguese town, meets annually since 2003 to exchange ideas. In this year apart from the German Federal President the heads of state from Austria, Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Italy, Malta, Poland Portugal and Slovenia are participating. As first station of the two day meeting the group met yesterday at the Wartburg where they discussed the question of unity in Europe after an introduction to the history of the Reformation and its significance for the present.

Professor Dr. Marcus Hasselhorn, in addition to his role as Executive Director, is Director of the institute’s department “Education and Development” and simultaneously Professor of Psychology at the Goethe-University Frankfurt. He is Scientific Head of the Research Center IDeA (Center for Research on Individual Development and Adaptive Education of Children at Risk) and spokesperson of the Education Research Network of the Leibniz Association.

Press Contact
Philip Stirm, DIPF, +49 (0)69 24708-123,

last modified Mar 08, 2016