Denmark

Recent developments:

  • Appointment process for external members of university boards/councils changed in 2012 to increase transparency around appointments
  • Student numbers have been restricted for more academic programmes due to concerns about graduate employment
  • From 2013 onwards there has been a change in the government’s regulation of admissions criteria at Bachelor level, with a move from external regulation to greater co-regulation with universities
  • From 2014 onwards the Danish quality assurance system has been in transition, evolving from programme accreditation to institutional accreditation
  • In 2013 the government introduced a new ‘pre-qualification’ requirement to ensure all new programmes have relevance in the employment market

Organisational autonomy: high

The selection criteria for executive heads are stated in law, which also regulates characteristics of university boards/councils (minimum and maximum size, inclusion of external members and their basic competences). The selection procedure, term of office and dismissal process for the executive head are the responsibility of universities. They also appoint their board members independently.

Financial autonomy: medium high

Universities receive an annual block grant of which they control the internal allocation. There are no restrictions on universities owning, buying and selling buildings. Universities may not charge tuition fees to Danish and EU nationals at any level. Universities may charge tuition fees to non-EU nationals at Bachelor and Master levels.

Academic autonomy: medium high

There are restrictions on student numbers for some programmes set by an external authority. At Bachelor and Master levels admissions are co-regulated by universities and an external authority. All new programmes must meet a ‘pre-qualification’ requirement to ensure they are relevant to employers. Universities in Denmark cannot choose either external quality assurance mechanisms or providers.

Staffing autonomy: high

The number of posts is regulated by an external authority for some administrative staff. Salaries for academic staff are negotiated with other parties. For administrative staff salary bands are prescribed by an external authority. For both academic and administrative staff promotions public sector regulations apply so posts cannot be filled until after a vacancy has been advertised and an application process has taken place.

Organisational weighted 94% unweighted 94%

100

100% Selection procedure for the executive head

The selection of the executive head is not validated by an external authority

75

75% Selection criteria for the executive head

The law states that the executive head must hold an academic position

This applies to 13 other countries: Croatia, Estonia, Flanders, France, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Spain, Sweden

100

100% Dismissal of the executive head

The procedure for the dismissal of the executive head is not stated in the law

100

100% Term of office of the executive head

The length of the term of office is not stated in the law

This applies to 5 other countries: Wallonia, The Netherlands, Slovenia, Spain, United Kingdom

100

100% External members in university governing bodies

Universities cannot decide as they must include external members

Universities can freely decide on external members

This applies to 6 other countries: Estonia, Finland, Italy, Lithuania, Portugal, United Kingdom

100

100% Capacity to decide on academic structures

Universities can decide on their academic structures without constraints

80

80% Capacity to create legal entities

Other restrictions

This applies to 6 other countries: Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Poland, Slovakia, Sweden

Financial weighted 69% unweighted 53%

60

60% Length of public funding cycle

100

100% Type of public funding

Block grant and there are no restrictions on the allocation of funding

100

100% Ability to borrow money

Universities can borrow money without restrictions

This applies to 7 other countries: Austria, Estonia, Finland, Flanders, Wallonia, Latvia, The Netherlands

100

100% Ability to keep surplus

Surplus can be kept without restrictions

100

100% Ability to own buildings

Universities can sell their buildings without restrictions

This applies to 9 other countries: Austria, Estonia, France, Wallonia, Italy, The Netherlands, Slovakia, Spain, United Kingdom

0

0% Tuition fees for national/EU students at Bachelor level

There are no tuition fees

0

0% Tuition fees for national/EU students at Master's level

There are no tuition fees

0

0% Tuition fees for national/EU students at doctoral level

There are no tuition fees

60

60% Tuition fees for non-EU students at Bachelor level

Universities and an external authority cooperate in setting the level of tuition fees

This applies to 4 other countries: Finland, Poland, Slovenia, Switzerland

60

60% Tuition fees for non-EU students at Master's level

Universities and an external authority cooperate in setting the level of tuition fees

This applies to 4 other countries: Finland, Poland, Slovenia, Switzerland

0

0% Tuition fees for non-EU students at doctoral level

There are no tuition fees

This applies to 6 other countries: Brandenburg, Finland, Hesse, North Rhine-Westphalia, Norway, Sweden

Staffing weighted 86% unweighted 86%

100

100% Recruitment procedures for senior academic staff

Recruitments are carried out freely by universities

83

83% Recruitment procedures for senior administrative staff

The number of posts is regulated by an external authority for some staff

This applies to 2 other countries: Croatia, Italy

67

67% Salaries for senior academic staff

Salary bands are negotiated with other parties

This applies to 5 other countries: Finland, Iceland, The Netherlands, Norway, United Kingdom

67

67% Salaries for senior administrative staff

Salary bands are prescribed by an external authority for all staff

This applies to 4 other countries: France, Hungary, Ireland, Serbia

100

100% Dismissal of senior academic staff

There are no sector-specific regulations concerning dismissals (national labour regulations apply)

This applies to 8 other countries: Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom

100

100% Dismissal of senior administrative staff

There are no sector-specific regulations concerning dismissals (national labour regulations apply)

86

86% Promotion procedures for senior academic staff

Other restrictions

This applies to 7 other countries: France, Wallonia, Hesse, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, North Rhine-Westphalia

86

86% Promotion procedures for senior administrative staff

Other restrictions

This applies to 9 other countries: France, Wallonia, Hesse, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, North Rhine-Westphalia, Serbia, Slovenia

Academic weighted 75% unweighted 75%

60

60% Overall student numbers

Universities negotiate with an external authority

60

60% Admissions procedures at Bachelor level

Admission criteria are co-regulated by an external authority and universities

60

60% Admissions procedures at Master's level

Admission criteria are co-regulated by an external authority and universities

This applies to 7 other countries: Austria, Croatia, Flanders, Hungary, The Netherlands, Slovenia, Sweden

60

60% Introduction of programmes at Bachelor level

Other restrictions

This applies to 9 other countries: Austria, Brandenburg, Estonia, Finland, Flanders, Hesse, Iceland, Latvia, Sweden

60

60% Introduction of programmes at Master's level

Other restrictions

This applies to 9 other countries: Austria, Brandenburg, Estonia, Finland, Flanders, Hesse, Iceland, Latvia, Sweden

100

100% Introduction of programmes at doctoral level

Universities can open degree programmes without prior accreditation

100

100% Termination of degree programmes

Universities can terminate degree programmes independently

100

100% Language of instruction at Bachelor level

Universities can choose the language of instruction for all programmes

100

100% Language of instruction at Master's level

Universities can choose the language of instruction for all programmes

100

100% Selection of quality assurance mechanisms

Universities cannot select quality assurance mechanisms

0

0% Selection of quality assurance providers

Universities cannot choose the quality assurance agency

100

100% Capacity to design content of degree programmes

Universities can freely design the content of degree programmes and courses (other than for the regulated professions)