The German Rectors' Conference (HRK) has established contacts with the Rectors' Council of the Central American Universities (CSUCA) since 1996 as part of their commitment to developmental policy. The CSUCA unites the publicly financed universities of the central American countries Belize, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama in a regional network of higher education institutions (HEIs) and also links them to the Accreditation Council for Central America (CCA). At the forefront of the cooperation projects jointly supervised and funded by the HRK and DAAD are regional cooperation and quality assurance.
In 2002, the HRK and the CSUCA signed a Framework Agreement on Cooperation in Higher Education between German and Central American HEIs.
Background to cooperation
The CSUCA has been developing an independent system of accreditation and evaluation in Central America since the mid-1990s and has supported cooperation with foreign experts since its foundation. For several years, German involvement in this process was managed by InWEnt (formerly DSE). In 2004, the DAAD and HRK jointly took over these responsibilities, and concluded a three-year ‘Master Plan’ with the CSUCA to support further development and extension of the Central American quality assurance system in higher education. The success of this cooperation process can now be seen in many areas: modelled on the German accreditation system, a regional, Central American Council for Accreditation as well as several accreditation agencies working throughout the region have been founded.