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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity

Research Report of the ESNSurvey 2013 Julia Fellinger (ed.), JesĂşs EscrivĂĄ, Eleni Kalantzi, Karina Oborune & Jurgita Stasiukaityte Erasmus Student Network AISBL, Brussels 2013


Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity

Research Report of the ESNSurvey 2013 Julia Fellinger (ed.), JesĂşs EscrivĂĄ, Eleni Kalantzi, Karina Oborune & Jurgita Stasiukaityte Erasmus Student Network, Brussels 2013


Copyright © 2013 by the Erasmus Student Network AISBL. All rights reserved. Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity: Research Report of the ESNSurvey 2013 Author: Julia Fellinger, Jesús Escrivá, Eleni Kalantzi, Karina Oborune & Jurgita Stasiukaityte Published by Erasmus Student Network AISBL Design: Josefin Svensson & Robert Klimacki Editing: Stefan Jahnke Cover photography: Markus Lutter This information can be freely used and copied for non-commercial purposes, provided that the source is acknowledged (© Erasmus Student Network) For ordering additional copies of the publication, please contact secretariat@esn.org Erasmus Student Network AISBL Rue Hydraulique 15 1210 Brussels, Belgium Tel: +32 2 256 74 27 Digital version of this report is available through www.esn.org


Index

Preface 6 Introduction 7 Key results 8 Recommendations 10 Students’ Characteristics 11 Demographic profile 11 Background of Respondents 15 Satisfaction with Quality of Studies and Stay Abroad 17 Employability 18 Networks 24 Entrepreneurship 31 European Identity 33 European Citizenship 40 Student Organizations and their help to students 47 Acknowledgements 50 Figures and Tables 51 List of Abbreviations 53 Sources 54 Annex 1: About ESN 55 Annex 2: Questionnaire 58


Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Preface

The Erasmus Student Network (ESN) strongly believes in mobility. We can see every day how people’s lives change when they are abroad. Individuals develop and grow as people, become more mature and widen their horizons. Only by experiencing Europe first-hand, can Europeans develop a European identity and a sense of belonging to Europe. Our generation has mainly forgotten the times of war and conflict; living, working and studying abroad substantially contributes to continued peaceful and harmonious coexistence in Europe and beyond. The aforementioned reasons have always been the main driver and inspiration behind the work of ESN. We cannot ignore that Europe is still in severe economic troubles. In particular, the unacceptably high youth unemployment rates in many countries are neither sustainable nor acceptable. We believe that ESN can contribute through their work and research to the improvement in this area. In the 2011 edition we started addressing employability and showing the beneficial effects of an exchange on developing skills and finding employment. We have continued and built upon this analysis in the 2013 edition. In this edition, you can find out how an exchange period helps to create networks, an essential cornerstone in finding employment. Entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial skills have increasingly become a topic that captures the interest of policy makers. We believe that for the common European market, European-minded entrepreneurs are needed. We provide some insights on the potentially beneficial effects of a stay abroad in this regard in this year’s report. This is the 8th edition of the ESNSurvey and I am proud of the team and the whole network that have once again made this edition possible. It is thanks to all of you that this wonderful project is such a continued success. I wish you a pleasant and enriching read.

With warm wishes, Emanuel Alfranseder President ESN AISBL 2012/2013

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Introduction

In the light of increased efforts by European policy makers to fight recession and youth unemployment, such as the European Commissions’ initiative ‘Working together for Europe’s young people - A call to action on youth unemployment1, international exchange will keep playing a crucial role. Within the next 7 years 4 million young Europeans are getting the chance to take part in mobility programs financed through the new Erasmus+ program. The 8th edition of the ESNSurvey inquires in which ways studying or working abroad plays a role in creating ideas, opportunities and identity for young Europeans, economically as well as politically. The report highlights how acquiring new marketable ideas abroad may spur entrepreneurship and how opportunities such as building up a wide international network may have positive effects on employability and entrepreneurship. The ESNSurvey 2013 also focuses on a more cultural issue: how creating a European identity through mobility – specifically relevant in this time of crisis and loss of perspective for many young people – may encourage active European citizenship. I want to thank my fellow researchers for their time and effort invested in this report and of course the whole Erasmus Student Network and its many stakeholders, without whom this project could never have become such a continuous success. Enjoy the read! Julia Fellinger ESNSurvey Coordinator 2012/13

1 COM(2013) 447

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Key Results

Satisfaction with the experience abroad On a scale from 1 to 5 (5 indicating highest satisfaction), students rate satisfaction with their stay abroad 4.3 and their satisfaction with studies abroad 3.9.

Employability • Mobile students are more probable to live outside their home region than non-mobile students. • Mobile students are more capable of searching for jobs in languages other than their mother tongue or English. • Mobile students have a more specific idea about their career’s development. Also, they see themselves in comparatively higher positions than students without mobility experience. • Students with exchange experience appreciate working in an international environment, the possibility to travel and ability to work independently more than those without.

Networks • There are visible differences in the use of social networks between mobile and non-mobile students. VoIP-services such as Skype remain a symbol of exchange students. • Students who have been (or are planning to go) abroad are more engaged in social activities, open to meet new people and having a bigger circle of friends than those who are not planning to do so.

Entrepreneurship • More than 50% of the young Europeans surveyed could imagine setting up their own business. • 2% of respondents have introduced a product encountered during their stay abroad on their home countries’ markets and 22% are thinking of doing so. • However, despite having come across such a product or idea, one third of respondents do not plan to turn it into a business opportunity. Their biggest obstacle: lack of starting capital.

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European Identity and Citizenship • Mobile and future mobile students feel more cosmopolitan and European compared to non-mobile students. • Mobile and future mobile students are better informed about the EU and more interested in international and European politics than non-mobile students.

Student organizations and their help to students • The percentage of students’ awareness concerning the existence of ESN increased compared to last year.

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Recommendations

For national governments and EU decision makers: • •

Awareness about the various opportunities of going abroad should be raised even further. Entrepreneurial spirit should be fostered by facilitating the implementation of new business ideas upon return from an exchange as well as access to starting capital.

For higher education insitutions: •

Future policies should try to focus specifically on students who are less interested in international and European issues.

For organisations providing services to international students: • •

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Student organisations should focus more on the local integration of international students. Student organisations should further promote the different opportunities of mobility to all students, especially at an early stage, through programs such as “Erasmus in Schools”.


Students’ Characteristics By Jesús Escrivá Muñoz

Demographic profile The ESNSurvey analyses whether students have studied or worked abroad. Among the respondents, 64.5% have already studied abroad and 35% have worked abroad. Although students are more likely to have only studied abroad (38.2%), 26.3% of those having studied abroad have also worked abroad. Lastly, only 9% of respondents have only worked abroad.

Figure 1. Students having studied abroad (n=18,451)

Figure 2. Students having worked abroad (n=18,451)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Regarding work abroad, the survey further differentiates between the types of contract respondents have (volunteer work, regular job or internship). As shown in Figure 3, most have been employed abroad with a summer job (26%) or with a regular job (20%).

Figure 3. Different types of work abroad between our respondents (n=9,048)

Among the students that have not studied abroad, more than 60% plan to study abroad: 37.8% have not arranged it yet, but 27% are going on exchange soon. There are also 15.9% of students who are unsure about it and the rest are definitely not going to study abroad: 12.8% of students have something holding them back from entering an exchange program, while only 6.5% are not planning to go abroad due to their own choice.

Figure 4. Willingness to study abroad of respondents not having done so yet (n=9,394)

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Slightly more than half (55.2%) of responding students have studied abroad for one semester (4 to 6 months) and around a quarter (26.1%) have stayed abroad for two semesters (9 to 10 months). The countries students choose most frequently as exchange destinations are Spain (13.5%), France (9.6%), Germany (7.8%) and the United Kingdom (6.9%). The percentages the European Commission reports are in line with our statistical analyses. Host Country of ESNSurvey Number of respondents having studied ESNSurvey abroad respondents

Percentage ESNSurvey respondents

Percentage of all incoming Erasmus students*

Spain

2012

13.5%

16.2%

France

1436

9.6%

12%

Germany

1165

7.8%

10.7%

United Kingdom

1022

6.9%

10.6%

Italy

957

6.4%

8.3%

Sweden

805

5.4%

4.3%

Portugal

646

4.3%

3.7%

Finland

634

4.3%

2.9%

Netherlands

625

4.2%

4.0%

Poland

590

4.0%

3.3%

Table 1. Host countries of ESNSurvey respondents who studied abroad (n=14,913) *Source: European Commission (2012). Displays the data for the total number of incoming Erasmus students

When taking a look at the students who have worked abroad, the main destinations are again United Kingdom (13.0%), Germany (9.6%), Spain (8.5%) and also France (8.0%). In our survey we take into account all types of working experience abroad, including countries not taking part in the Erasmus Placement program of the European Commission (e.g. the USA).

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Host Country of ESNSurvey Number of respondents respondents having worked abroad

Percentage

United Kingdom

1051

13.0%

Germany

771

9.6%

Spain

689

8.5%

France

642

8.0%

United States

618

7.7%

Italy

324

4.0%

Switzerland

232

2.9%

Netherlands

226

2.8%

Belgium

215

2.7%

Denmark

200

2.5%

Table 2. Host countries of ESNSurvey respondents who worked abroad (n=8,068) *Source: European Commission (2011). Displays the data for the total number of outgoing Erasmus students

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Background of Respondents

Around 61% of the respondents are between 21 and 24 years old. The average age is 23.5 years, as in previous editions of the ESNSurvey. Also, the gender ratio is consistent with previous results, with more female respondents (66.7%) than male ones (33.3%). In the 2013 edition, the main countries of origin are Spain (11.0%), Germany (10.7%), Italy (9.1%) and Poland (7.7%). This composition does not fully reflect the true student population and shows a slight bias towards Turkey and Portugal with an underrepresented France. This does not make the answers less valid, but the reader shall keep the main countries of origin in mind while reading this report. Countries of origin of all respondents

Number of respondents

Percentage

Spain

2025

11.0%

Germany

1981

10.7%

Italy

1684

9.1%

Poland

1418

7.7%

Turkey

979

5.3%

Portugal

959

5.2%

France

913

4.9%

Czech Republic

805

4.4%

Croatia

704

3.8%

Denmark

663

3.6%

Table 3. Countries of origin of respondents (n=18,476)

The most popular areas of studies of respondents are Business and Management Studies – 14.4% of students. Engineering is the second most popular option for international students (13.1%) followed by Languages and Philological Studies (9.5%) and Social Sciences (9.3%). These results are completely in line with previous editions of the ESNSurvey, even though this year we can observe a slight increase in the number of students in engineering compared to last year’s figures. According to gender, male students are more likely to be enrolled in Engineering Technology and female students in Business and Management.

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Figure 5. Areas of study of respondents (n=17,704)

Among the respondents, most of them (75%) are planning to finish their university degrees in 2012 or by 2013. 31% are pursuing a Bachelor’s degree, 46.5% already have a Bachelor’s degree and 21.4% have obtained their Master’s degree. Only 1.1% of respondents are PhDs. Highest Degree

Number of ESNSurvey respondents

Percentage

PhD

199

1.1%

Master

3953

21.4%

Bachelor

8597

46.5%

High School (I am still studying)

5728

31.0%

Table 4. Highest attained qualification of ESNSurvey respondents (n=18,477)

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Satisfaction with Quality of Studies and Stay abroad

Students’ satisfaction with their stay abroad is measured using questions concerning overall satisfaction levels with their stay and with the quality of their studies abroad. In line with previous ESNSurvey editions, more than 85% of students give a positive answer (“very satisfied” or “rather satisfied”) regarding the quality of their stay abroad. However, satisfaction with the quality of studies is slightly lower (around 75%). On average, students are more satisfied with their stay abroad than with the quality of their studies abroad. The satisfaction with the stay abroad stands at around 4.3 on a 5-point scale, which means a modest increase of the satisfaction of students, which was 4.2 in the ESNSurvey 2011 and 4.5 in the ESNSurvey 2010. Satisfaction with studies abroad also increased from 3.5 in 2011 to 3.9 in 2012, reaching the level of 2010, when it was also rated 3.9.

Figure 6. Level of satisfaction with experience and studies abroad (n=14,775)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Employability By Jurgita Stasiukaityte

Taking part in international mobility programs for studies, volunteering, research, internships or by working abroad provides students with a unique learning experience. Apart from the obvious linguistic advantages, improved interpersonal skills or increased independence, it also offers a holistic benefit to students’ employability and opens up additional career opportunities. As a matter of fact, in this ‘shrinking’ world, graduates are competing for jobs with candidates in the global marketplace and not just in their own backyards2. Therefore, this part will investigate the influence of the mobility experience on students’ employability, personal development and their future career plans. In the ESNSurvey students are divided into three different groups, according to their experience abroad: those who have studied abroad; those who have not, but are intending to; those who have not and are unsure or do not want to go abroad. Figure 7 compares the current place of residence among students of those three categories.

Figure 7. Comparison of the current residences between respondents who have already studied abroad and who have not, but are planning to, or not planning to (n=18,476)

As the graph shows, people who have experienced mobility are more likely to live in a country which is different than their home country. They are also less likely to live in the region or country where they grew up. Conversely, respondents who have never studied abroad are more likely to live in the same region and country. There is only a slight difference among those who are planning to go on exchange and those who do not know or do not want to. It means that exposure to different cultures plants the seeds for an enhanced interest in career development in an international environment. 2 British Council 2012; Think Global & British Council 2011

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To prove this point, it is important to take into account students’ attitudes regarding where they would want to live 5 years from now. Figure 8 shows that there is only a slight difference between students who have already had a mobility experience and those who have not yet, demonstrating that all students have a broad perspective. They think about living in other European countries or outside Europe as an absolutely normal thing and only a small group still imagine themselves living in the same region or even the same village or town.

Figure 8. Comparison of students’ willingness to move in the future (n=18,476)

Considering the living standards of the country where students are willing to work, there is no big difference between the opinions of the respondents with exchange experience and without. In general, 45.4 % of the respondents would like to work in countries with higher living standards than their home country, 36 % – similar living standards to their home country, only 3.2 % – lower than their home country, 28.2 % think that living standards do not matter for them and 10.2 % of the respondents have not decided yet. According to the respondents, the most popular sources they use when they are looking for a new job or internship are personal networks (friends, family, etc.) - 53.6%, job search engines/websites - 48.1%, university career services/office - 40.3% and general online research - 38.4%. Contrarily, the least popular sources are: announcements in newspapers/magazines - 16 %, state employment agencies - 14.4%, other employment 19


Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

agencies - 11.6%, job fairs - 9.7% and only 5.9% of the respondents tried to contact the potential employer directly. And although there is no substantial difference between mobile and non-mobile students, regarding the information sources they use, the choice of language they use to search for job announcements differs. It can be seen in Figure 9 that most of the students use their mother tongue or English and we can show that the least popular way to search for job announcements is in languages different from ones mother tongue(s) and English. Only 34% of students with international experience and 29.3% of students without an international experience practice this method.

Figure 9. Comparison between the languages students use to search for job announcements

To get a better insight into whether the mobility experience changes professional attitudes and future career goals, students were asked to indicate in what position they realistically see themselves in 5 years. There is a slight difference between students who have experienced an exchange and those who have not. The key findings are: • 59.8% of students with mobility experience and 63.4% of students without mobility experience realistically see themselves as specialists in their fields • Only 18.7% of students with mobility experience and 21.9% of students without mobility experience - in positions with no or limited responsibility • 42.8% of students with mobility experience and 37.3% of students without mobility experience imagine themselves working in a supervisory role • 16.8% of students with mobility experience and 17.4% of students without mobility

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experience see themselves working in a leading executive position • 17.7% of students with mobility experience and 16.1% of students without mobility experience conceive of having their own companies. Students also were asked to indicate their current career vision. The ESNSurvey results were striking – on average only 33.8% of students somewhat agree that they have a concrete idea about their future job and even 37.2% of students with mobility experience and 41.7% - without mobility experience strongly agree that they do not have any concrete idea about what kind of job they want to have in future. Students were asked to evaluate their personal characteristics on a scale from strongly disagree to strongly agree. The figure below shows that students who have studied, worked or lived abroad for a while, evaluate themselves slightly better in almost all personal characteristics. The biggest differences can be observed in the characteristics: “I am independent”, “I am open-minded” and “I am confident”. It is also important to note that neither students with mobility experience nor those without think that they have a good ability to control conflict situations.

Figure 10. Comparison of self-evaluation of various personal characteristics (n=18,476)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

As the main aim of this analysis is to compare the differences between students with mobility experience and those without, it is also important to get an understanding of whether the mobility experience has changed the features which make jobs attractive for students. Figure 11 displays an overview of the whole sample indicating how strongly respondents agree that certain characteristics make jobs attractive to them and showing the differences between students who have already studied, worked and lived abroad and those who do not have any mobility experience. As we can see from the graph, students with exchange experience appreciate more working in an international environment, the possibility to travel and ability to work independently. This should be taken into account not only by multinational corporations or local companies, but also universities and governmental institutions in order to enhance the employability of their students.

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Figure 11. Comparison of features which make a job attractive to students who have studied abroad (c), who have not, but are planning to (b), and who have not and are not planning to (a) (n=18,476)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Networks By Julia Fellinger

Virtual networks are important instruments to stay in touch with friends and family while abroad, as well as to keep in touch with the new friends made in a different country. Survey data underline this fact: while differences among those who have studied, worked or lived abroad are minimal (between 0.1 and 1.5 percentage points), there are visible differences in the use among those who have been abroad and those who have just started planning to go abroad or who are not planning to leave at all. Facebook is being used very frequently by all groups, though slightly more by respondents who have been or are planning to go abroad. A huge difference, however, becomes visible when comparing the use of VoIP-services such as Skype: it remains a symbol of international and Erasmus students, as reported in the ESN Survey 2008 – Exchanging Cultures3. Other services such as Google+, MSN or twitter, are less popular among exchange students in comparison to non-exchange students.

Figure 12. Comparison of the use of social networks, according to respondents who have been abroad (n=14,029), are planning to go abroad (n=3,007) or are not planning to (n=1,415)

3 ESNSurvey 2008

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Taking a closer look at Facebook, and using number of Facebook friends as a proxy to determine the size of personal networks, we can see a clear difference in the median number4 of Facebook friends: for a person who has been abroad the figure is 340, for a person who is planning to go abroad it is 300 and for a person who is not planning to go abroad it is substantially lower at 224. It becomes very clear that mobility experiences enlarge one’s personal networks.

Figure 13. Median number of Facebook friends (n=17,072)

When it comes to actual circles of friends, there are again visible differences among people who have been abroad and those who have not – and again very small differences among those who studied, worked or lived abroad or are planning to. Respondents who are not planning to go abroad are more likely to prefer spending time by themselves and a small circle of very close friends. Those who have been and those who are planning to go abroad show almost the same preferences; this leads to the assumption that leaving a small but very close circle of friends behind, while at the same time not seeing an advantage in meeting many new people, may be an obstacle for going abroad.

4 50% of respondents stating a higher and 50% of respondents stating a lower figure, thus eliminating the effect of outliers

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Figure 14. Preferred circles of friends (n=18,451)

On the question about reasons to contact family and friends, the differences between those who have studied and those who have worked or lived abroad are again marginal (0.0-0.2 percentage points), so the graph focuses on the differences between those who have been abroad and those who are planning or not planning to, respectively. The main visible difference is the fact that those who have been abroad contact their family and friends more often for socialising, sports, personal problems or fun, and less often for discussing work-related problems or finding a job.

Figure 15. Reasons to contact family and friends according to mobility experience (n=18,451)

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When looking for a job, all respondents prefer their current place of study (56-66%) to do so. Around 50% search for jobs online, slightly less do so on job fairs. One third of people who have been abroad also state their current job as a place to look for future opportunities, almost the same number of people who have not been and are not planning to go abroad do so as well. The number is slightly smaller for respondents who are planning to study abroad. Between 13% and 19% of respondents are currently not looking for a job, the number being the smallest for those who are not planning to go abroad, potentially as they are the ones most likely to have a job already, which is keeping them from going abroad.

Figure 16. Comparison of places to look for a job according to mobility experience (n=18,451)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Entrepreneurship By Julia Fellinger

Going abroad widens one’s horizon and opens one’s eyes to new products and business opportunities, as well as potential business partners. 51% of respondents who have studied abroad claim to have met someone they could imagine starting a business with in the future. The number is slightly higher for those who have already worked abroad.

Figure 17. Did you meet someone you could imagine starting a business with? (n=18,420)

Regarding the introduction of new products upon return, 2% of respondents have actually introduced a new product on their home countries’ markets and 22% are thinking of doing so. However, one third of respondents do not plan on turning their product idea into a business opportunity, and 40% have not witnessed a product with marketing potential in their home countries.

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Figure 18. Introduction of new products (n=14,029)

When it comes to starting one’s own business, almost 60% of respondents who have been on exchange or lived abroad can imagine to do so, compared to even slightly more of those planning to go abroad. People who are not planning to go abroad are 10 percentage-points less likely to start their own business, slightly more likely to be unsure about the idea and slightly more likely to be opposed to it.

Figure 19. Comparison of attitudes towards starting a business by mobility experience (n=18,451)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

When looking at the topic from a gender perspective, male respondents can imagine opening a business by 7 percentage points more than female ones, who rank higher in definitely not wanting to start their own business or being unsure about it.

Figure 20. Comparison of attitudes towards starting a business by gender (n=18,451)

Some respondents already have experience in starting their own business. There seem to be little differences regarding experience abroad, apart from the group of people planning to go abroad. This might be cuased due to the fact that the average age of those having started a business, 25 years, is 2 years higher than those who are only thinking about it, and the age of those who have started a business but are not running it anymore, is even 5 years above the average of 23.

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Figure 21. Comparison of having started a business by experience abroad (n=18,451)

Discouraging factors When investigating the factors discouraging respondents to start their own business, the biggest obstacle seems to be a lack of starting capital, followed by concerns about the current economic crisis and a general fear of failing. Other commonly stated obstacles are a lack of government support and fear of paperwork. Less frequently named are intrinsic obstacles like a lack of a business idea or management skills. When it comes to finding business partners, it seems that those who have been abroad have a slight advantage over those who have not. People who have been abroad also seem less scared of working long hours. Loving their current jobs seems not to be a large obstacle for any of the groups; neither does lack of confidence.

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Figure 22. Discouraging factors to starting a business (n=18,451)

In the last decade the topic of European identity has become an issue of intense debate. 32


European Identity By Karina Oborune

Despite the fact that support for European integration has increased over the last twenty years, only 3% of EU citizens regard themselves first as Europeans. On the other hand, the Erasmus Programme is described as one of the symbols of the construction of European identity. The aim of fostering European identity has been mentioned in several EC documents. For the first time it was mentioned in 1994 – in the Socrates programme. In 2011 the aim of promoting European identity was mentioned in the Erasmus+ for the period of 2014-2020. To analyse the level of cosmopolitan, European, national, local, and individual identity, students were asked to indicate how strongly they agree or disagree with statements regarding their identification as a world citizen, as part of the European community, as a part of their nation, as a part of their local community, or as an autonomous individual.

Figure 23. Students’ perceptions on cosmopolitan, European, national, local, and individual identity (n=2,236-12,173)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Students define their identity as: global (86%), national (84%), European (82%), local (74%) and individual (71%). This is similar to results of the ESNSurvey 2007 where students defined their identity as: global (89%), European (84%), national (82%), individual (73%) and local (70%). The strongest identities for students are cosmopolitan, national and European. Local and individual identities are weaker. Moreover, national and European identities are not conflicting, but rather complementary. One can have both a national, as well as a European identity and the project of European identity does not mean the loss of national identity. People who have a strong European identity could also have a strong sense of national identity. There are more students in the group of mobile and future mobile students who strongly agree that they have a cosmopolitan identity.

Figure 24. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on cosmopolitan identity (n=2,236-12,173)

There are more students in the group of mobile and future mobile students who strongly agree that they have a European identity.

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Figure 25. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on European identity (n=2,236-12,173)

Non-mobile students feel slightly more strongly about their national identity compared with mobile and future mobile students.

Figure 26. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on national identity (n=2,236-12,173)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

There is no slight difference between mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students in their perceptions on local and individual identity.

Figure 27. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on local identity (n=2,23612,173)

Figure 28 - Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on individual identity (n=2,236-12,173)

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In order to analyse whether European exchange programmes have an impact on European identity, mobile students were asked whether they feel more European after their experience abroad. More than half of mobile students felt more European (36%) or a bit more European (23%) after living abroad. 39% of mobile students say that nothing changed (they do not feel more European) after they have lived abroad than they did before. A small amount of students state that they feel less European (2%).

Figure 29. Mobile students’ feeling of being more European after they have lived abroad (n=12,173)

European identity is a complex issue. In order to analyse it, respondents were asked to indicate what they understand by European identity. They have to describe what “feeling more European” means to them. Three groups of answers can be drawn: - General understanding of feeling European - Political understanding of feeling European - Cultural understanding of feeling European

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

General European Identity

Political

Cultural

European Identity

European Identity

Figure 30. Students’ understanding of feeling European

The general understanding of feeling European implies having a strong group feeling, answering the question “where are you from?” with “I am from Europe, I am European.” This is underlined by statements such as: • • • • •

“I was born to live in Europe”. “I am a big fan of the European idea and I now understand what it is about.” “Being European is something more than a useless fictional name. Though it still has a long journey ahead”. “I understood that Europe really exists, it is not just something you hear on the news”. “I see myself as part of European culture and identity promoting and establishing partnerships through my previous experiences in Comenius Program (Norway), Erasmus studies (Italy), Erasmus placements (Poland) and during my medical Training (Spain). I have been selected by the EU as the 2 millionth Erasmus Student, which has reinforced my European feeling of promoting both national and European identity.”

The political understanding of feeling European concerns identification with the European Union, being a citizen of the EU, as well as being more interested in European politics and understanding inner-European problems: • • • 38

“I feel that the European Union is the last great political dream. As an Erasmus student, I felt that I was putting my brick in this new building.” „I am a great supporter of the EU”. “This means to me having a wider understanding of European policy.”


• • • • • •

“It helped me understand how the EU works”. “I feel more as a part of the European community, I am more interested in EU issues and I have a stronger sense of my responsibilities as a European citizen”. “I now feel the EU institutions represent every EU citizen, just like national institutions represent citizens of a country”. “I feel like we are just a nation, not a Union.” “I am more interested in the European Parliament, changes and other countries that are part of the EU.” “It means having a thorough knowledge of the European Institutions and their functions, constantly remaining up-to-date with international events, getting involved in EU procedures.”

The cultural understanding of feeling European means to feel similar to other people from Europe, especially in culture and life style, to share common values, traditions, customs, habits, and to see differences between people from European and non-European countries: •

“To feel a connection and similarity with people from other European countries, no matter if they have a different language, culture, cuisine etc.” • “Feeling proud of being part of such a big economic zone, proud of the culture you see around you.” • “I feel European because I think that Europe is a mosaic of very different and sometimes conflicting cultures, however each of them should learn something from the other. This was what I felt when I was with other Erasmus students and I think can be applied to relations between European nations as well.” • “I feel I have a new European family abroad.” • “European citizens are all my brothers and sisters, we stand together or fall together, European borders are my home’s borders.” • “I think, people, who are European by nationality (Spanish, German and etc.) are not truly European, unless they experience different European cultures and social lives.” Many students have also mentioned tolerance and open-mindedness. • “It means being more open minded, tolerant of others, interacting with other traditions and cultures, having a multicultural environment and feeling more encouraged to live abroad.” • “I truly believe that barriers between European peoples are not that visual anymore”. Many students also concluded that they are now keener to live in another European country after their exchange period. 

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

European Citizenship By Karina Oborune

Students were asked how well informed they feel about the European Union. 13.9% feel very well informed, 52.9% feel rather well informed, 29.2% feel rather poorly informed and 4% feel very poorly informed. Thus, more students (66.87%) are informed about the EU than not (33.13%). By comparing mobile and non-mobile students, the conclusion can be drawn that mobile students are better informed about the EU than those who have not yet studied abroad (56.2% of mobile compared to 45.4% of non-mobile students).

Figure 31. Students’ information on the European Union (n=18,830)

Mobile (68.48% -combining ”very well” and ”rather well” responses) and future mobile students (66.05%) are better informed about the EU than non-mobile students (59.71%).

40


Figure 32. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ information on the EU (n=2236-12173)

Furthermore, students were asked how interested they are in local, national, European and international politics. Most students are interested in national (78%), international (69%), European (68%), and local (54%) politics. Similar results were found in ESNSurvey 2007, where most of the students were also interested in national (80%), international (74%), European (69%), and local (47%) politics.

Figure 33. Students’ interest in different areas of politics (n=2236-12173)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Comparing mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students, mobile and future mobile students are more interested in international and European politics than non-mobile students.

Figure 34. Students’ interest in international politics (n=2236-12173)

Figure 35. Students’ interest in European politics (n=2236-12173)

42


There are differences between mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students towards interest in national and local politics. 77.69% (combining responses “very interested” and “fairly interested”) of mobile, 75.32% of future mobile and 74.38% of non-mobile students are interested in national politics.

Figure 36. Students’ interest in national politics (n=2236-12173)

Figure 37. Students’ interest in local politics (n=2236-12173)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Students are more interested in national, international and European politics than in local politics. This also justifies the previous conclusion that the local identity is weaker than the cosmopolitan, national and European identities. Students were asked to indicate whether they had participated in the last EP elections.

Figure 38. Students’ participation in the elections for the European Parliament in 2009 (n=18,830)

40.82% of all respondents voted in the elections for the European Parliament in 2009, 16.2% did not vote because they were too young, 13.18% did not vote because their country was not a part of the European Union at that time and 29.8% did not vote because of other reasons. By comparing mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students, mobile and non-mobile students are more active citizens (44% of mobile students and 46% of non-mobile students voted in the elections for the European Parliament in 2009).

44


Figure 39. Students’ participation in the elections for the European Parliament in 2009 by mobility experience (n=2236-12173)

Students were asked whether they think a single person can exert influence on European development. 37.28% agree, 39.79% disagree, 9.73% strongly agree and 13.2% strongly disagree that a single person can exert influence on European development. Almost equal amounts of respondents agreed (47.01%) and disagreed (52.99%) – thus students are split in two groups on this issue.

45


Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Figure 40. Students’ views on whether single person can exert influence on the European development (n=18,830)

Figure 41. Students’ views on whether a single person can exert influence on European development by mobility experience (n=2236-12173)

Mobile and future mobile students are slightly more positive towards the idea that a single person can exert influence on European development compared to non-mobile students. 46


Student organisations and their help to students By Eleni Kalantzi

This chapter analyses if respondents are aware of student organisations such as ESN and similar organisations in their host university. Out of the respondents who have studied abroad 57% answer that there is an ESN section at their host university. This shows an increase in the percentage of the awareness of the existence of ESN sections compared to the 54% in the ESNSurvey 2011. On the other hand, 13.6% answer that there is no ESN section at their host university and 29.4% answer that they are not aware of an ESN section at their host university.

Figure 42. The existence of an ESN section at the host university (n=13,854)

The respondents had also to answer whether there are other student organisations except ESN at their host universities. 26.1% say that there are other student organisations, 20.1% say that there are no other student organisations and more than half (53.7%) state that they do not know whether there is a student organisation besides ESN at their host university.

47


Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Figure 43. The existence of student organisations at the host university besides ESN (n=13,853)

In addition, respondents evaluate their satisfaction concerning the services that ESN and other student organisations offer at their host university. Figure 2 shows a comparison between ESN and other student organisations5. Respondents evaluate their satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being very dissatisfied and 5 very satisfied. The satisfaction with ESN services is higher for trips and visiting tours, parties/informal meetings and orientation week, while the satisfaction with other student organisation services is higher for cultural events, integration into the local community and buddy mentor system. Finally, the overall satisfaction with the offered services is higher for ESN, with an average 4.1, an increase of 0.1 compared to ESNSurvey 2011.

5 Other student organisations do not offer discounts with ESN card and SocialErasmus activities as they are ESN’s projects.

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Figure 44. Average satisfaction with ESN’s and other student organisation’s activities (n=2,227-6,789)

Furthermore, the survey enquires whether the volunteer work of the members of ESN has encouraged students to do similar volunteer work at their home universities. 33.9% answer that they are interested in volunteering, but they have not done so yet, 9.6% answer that they joined a similar organisation and 6% joined a different voluntary organisation. 17.6% state that they have already been active in a volunteer organisation before going abroad and 33% say that they are not interested in volunteering.

Figure 45. Work of ESN volunteers encouraging respondents to do volunteer work themselves (n=7,710)

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Acknowledgements

Gathering more than 18,000 complete responses has only been possible thanks to the help of all the local sections of the Erasmus Student Network and the support of many other associations and institutions active in the field of international education. Our special gratitude goes to all supporters of the ESNSurvey 2013 who helped disseminate the questionnaire – AEGEE, Academic Cooperation Association (ACA), British Council, Centre for International Mobility (CIMO), Coimbra Group, Compostela Group, Erasmus Mundus Association (EMA), European Students Union (ESU), Network of Universities from the Capitals of Europe (UNICA) and European Association International Education (EAIE). Furthermore, ESN wishes to thank the Erasmus Unit of the European Commission for their kind and highly appreciated support of the ESNSurvey. Our gratitude goes to all the National LLP Agencies and universities that helped us promote the ESNSurvey and reach their students and members. Last but not least, the ESNSurvey is a product of countless days of work of the ESNSurvey team, composed of ESN members from different countries and cultures. It consists of Emanuel Alfranseder, President of ESN International 2012/2013, Stefan Jahnke, President of ESN International 2013/2014, Jesús Escrivá, Master student of Biomedical Engineering at the Politecnic University of Catalunya and University of Barcelona (Spain), Julia Fellinger, graduate of Socioeconomics at the University of Economics and Business Vienna (Austria), Eleni Kalantzi, graduate of International and European Economics at Athens University of Economics and Business (Greece), Karina Oborune, PhD student in Political Science at the University of Latvia (Latvia), Jurgita Stasiukaityte, graduate of Business Administration and Economics at Vilnius University (Lithuania), Robert Klimacki, member of the International Board 2013/2013 and Jonathan Jelves, member of the International Board 2013/2014. It is thanks to their dedication, motivation and enthusiasm that the ESNSurvey continues to be one of the most successful projects of ESN.

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Figures and tables

Figure 1. Students having studied abroad (n=24,195) Figure 2. Students having worked abroad (n=24,195) Figure 3. Different types of work abroad between our respondents (n=9,048) Figure 4. Willingness to study abroad of respondents not having done so yet (n=9,394) Figure 5. Areas of study of respondents (n=17,704) Figure 6. Level of satisfaction with experience and studies abroad (n=14,775) Figure 7. Comparison of the current residences between respondents who have already studied abroad and who have not, but are planning to, or not planning to (n=18,476) Figure 8. Comparison of students’ willingness to move in the future (n=18,476) Figure 9. Comparison between the languages students use to search for job announcements Figure 10. Comparison of self-evaluation of various personal characteristics (n=18,476) Figure 11. Comparison of features which make a job attractive to students who have studied abroad (c), who have not, but are planning to (b), and who have not and are not planning to (a) (n=18,476) Figure 12. Comparison of the use of social networks, according to respondents who have been abroad (n=14,029), are planning to go abroad (n=3,007) or are not planning to (n=1,415) Figure 13. Median number of Facebook friends (n=17,072) Figure 14. Preferred circles of friends (n=18,451) Figure 15. Reasons to contact family and friends according to mobility experience (n=18,451) Figure 16. Comparison of places to look for a job according to mobility experience (n=18,451) Figure 17. Did you meet someone you could imagine starting a business with? (n=18,420) Figure 18. Introduction of new products (n=14,029) Figure 19. Comparison of attitudes towards starting a business by mobility experience (n=18,451) Figure 20. Comparison of attitudes towards starting a business by gender (n=18,451) Figure 21. Comparison of having started a business by experience abroad (n=18,451) Figure 22. Discouraging factors to starting a business (n=18,451) Figure 23. Students’ perceptions on cosmopolitan, European, national, local, and individual identity Figure 24. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on cosmopolitan identity Figure 25. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on European identity Figure 26. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on national identity 51


Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Figure 27. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on local identity Figure 28. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ perceptions on individual identity Figure 29. Mobile students’ feeling of being more European after they have lived abroad (n=14369) Figure 30. Students’ understanding of feeling European Figure 31. Students’ information on the European Union Figure 32. Mobile, future mobile and non-mobile students’ information on the EU Figure 33. Students’ interest in different areas of politics Figure 34. Students’ interest in international politics Figure 35. Students’ interest in European politics Figure 36. Students’ interest in national politics Figure 37. Students’ interest in local politics Figure 38. Students’ participation in the elections for the European Parliament in 2009 (n=18,830) Figure 39. Students’ participation in the elections for the European Parliament in 2009 by mobility experience Figure 40. Students’ views on whether single person can exert influence on the European development Figure 41. Students’ views on whether a single person can exert influence on European development by mobility experience Figure 42. The existence of an ESN section at the host university (n=13,854) Figure 43. The existence of student organisations at the host university besides ESN (n=13,853) Figure 44. Average satisfaction with ESN’s and other student organisation’s activities (n=2,227-6,789) Figure 45. Work of ESN volunteers encouraging respondents to do volunteer work themselves (n=7,710)

52


List of Abbreviations AEGEE: ESN: EC: EP: EU: HEI: LLP: n:

Association des Etats Généraux des Etudiants de l’Europe / European Students’ Forum Erasmus Student Network AISBL European Commission European Parliament European Union Higher Education Institution Lifelong Learning Programme Number of valid responses

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Sources

British Council 2012: 1 in 3 feel they’d have a better job if they’d lived or studied abroad http://www.britishcouncil.org/press/1-3-better-job-if-lived-abroad

European Commission 2013: ‘Working together for Europe’s young people - A call to action on youth unemployment’, COM(2013) 447 of 19th of June 2013 http://ec.europa.eu/social/BlobServlet?docId=10298&langId=en

ESN Survey 2007: Generation Mobility http://www.esn.org/content/esnsurvey-2007

ESN Survey 2008: Exchanging Cultures http://esn.org/content/esnsurvey-2008-exchanging-cultures-0

Think Global & British Council 2011: Global Skills Gap - Preparing young people for the new global economy, http://clients.squareeye.net/uploads/dea/documents/BusinessPoll_online_TG.pdf

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Annex 1: About ESN

Erasmus Student Network (ESN) is the biggest inter-disciplinary European student organisation in the field of mobility. ESN is a non-political, non-profit and non-religious organisation with over 12,000 volunteer members from local student groups (so called sections) in more than 430 Higher Education Institutions in 36 countries. ESN supports educational, social and cultural integration of international students and provides practical information for incoming and outgoing students about various exchange programmes. Furthermore, ESN provides intercultural experiences to students who cannot access a period abroad (internationalisation at home). The vision of ESN is the enrichment of society through international students – thus, ESN works to foster the mobility of students under the principle of SHS – students helping students. ESN provides its services annually to about 150,000 international students in Europe and beyond. ESN’s activities comprise hundreds of projects developed at all levels. The main international projects of Erasmus Student Network are: 1.

ESNSurvey (http://esn.org/content/esnsurvey) is a European-wide research project covering different topics concerning mobility and education. It is conducted annually and surveys students at higher education institutions, with an average response rate of 10,000 answers. Starting in 2005, the ESNSurvey is the biggest regular European research project planned and carried out entirely by students for students. So far, the ESNSurvey has investigated the following topics – Experience of Studying Abroad (2005), Exchange Students’ Rights (2006), Generation Mobility (2007), Exchanging Cultures (2008), Information for Exchange (2009), E-Value-ate Your Exchange (2010) and Exchange, Employment and Added Value (2011).

2.

PRIME (Problems of Recognition in Making Erasmus, http://www.prime.esn.org/) is a research project addressing the continuing challenges concerning recognition procedures for outgoing exchange students. PRIME has been carried out in 2009 and 2010 following up on the results of the ESNSurveys 2006 and 2007, showing that full recognition is not yet a reality. The aim of PRIME is to collect best practices among participating higher education institutions and through their dissemination contribute to the improvement of the situation. A new study will be conducted in the course of 2013.

3.

STORY (Strengthening the Training Opportunities for International Youth, http://esn.org/content/story) is a new ESN project, launched in 2013 and

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

addressing key challenges of student and young graduates training mobility. A thorough investigation on the obstacles will allow producing tangible recommendations for all stakeholders. The project activities will raise awareness and provide information by promoting training mobility. Moreover, accessibility will be provided through an online platform matching companies and institutions offering training mobility opportunities with young Europeans seeking a training abroad. 4.

SocialErasmus (http://socialerasmus.esn.org/) gives international students the opportunity to help local communities in several ways through the interaction between students and local communities. It was the flagship project of ESN in 2011/2012. Projects are mainly carried out in three areas: Charity, Environment and Education. At the same time, international students gain experience, knowledge, openness and discover their love for Europe! Erasmus in Schools (EiS) was the flagship project of ESN for 2013 within the framework of SocialErasmus. These activities aim to promote mobility at an early age. ESN’s local sections organise visits to elementary and secondary schools so that international students can do a wide range of activities that include country and culture presentations, language sessions and mobility promoting activities.

5.

ExchangeAbility (http://exchangeability.esn.org/) aims at allowing students with disabilities to be fully involved in the activities of the local sections of ESN. Sections are encouraged to engage disabled students at their universities in the work for international students. Through participation and involvement in different activities, students with disabilities will be given an opportunity to experience the international and intercultural atmosphere associated with the exchange programmes. The long term goal of the project is to encourage an increasing number of disabled students to go for an exchange. Moreover, a sub-project MapAbility has been accepted by the European Youth Foundation in 2013 and will aim at mapping the accessibility of Higher Education Institutions for students with disabilities and special needs.

6.

ESNcard (http://esncard.org/) is the membership and discount card of ESN and ESN sections distribute the card to their volunteers and international students. The card offers a number of discounts at the local, national and international level. Annually, ESN issues about 100.000 cards.

7.

ESN Galaxy (https://galaxy.esn.org/) is a web platform based on the Web 2.0 technology. It brings all ESN sections together, allows them to communicate and share information in real time. This unique system allows international students and ESN

56


members to look for accommodation or to get information about their host country. ESN Galaxy also supports local sections via the provision of web-based services. 8.

eXpress, the ESN Magazine (http://esn.org/magazine) is published three times a year. It is an informative, high-quality magazine about issues concerning ESN, Europe and the European Union in particular, exchange and mobility. The articles are written by ESN volunteers and students from all around Europe.

9.

ESN Newsletter (http://esn.org/newsletters) is an ESN online communication tool, sent twice per month (at the beginning and in the middle of each month) to over 7.200 subscribers informing them about the network, ESN events and other interesting initiatives happening in Europe and beyond.

10. ESN Events – the International Board of ESN conducts open calls for various international events, taking place every year. These events include Regional Platforms (Central European Platform, Northern European Platform, South Eastern European Platform, South Western European Platform and Western European Platform), Committee Meetings, National Board Meetings, Cultural Medley, Councils of National Representatives, Council of National Delegates and the Annual General Meeting of ESN. Erasmus Student Network is a full member of the European Youth Forum since April 2010 and is a member of the Advisory Council on Youth of the Council of Europe for the next mandate 2014/2015. ESN is also a courtesy member of the European Association for International Education, full member of the Informal Forum of International Student Organisations (IFISO), full member of the European Movement International (EMI) and a full member of the European Civil Society Platform on Lifelong Learning (EUCIS-LLL).  

Contact: If you have any questions or would like to know more about ESN, please contact us directly at secretariat@esn.org. ESN AISBL Rue Hydraulique / Waterkrachtstraat, 15 B-1210 Saint-Josse-Ten-Noode / Sint-Jost-ten-Node Brussels BELGIUM Tel.: +32 (0) 22 567 427 Mob.: +32 (0) 477 567 889 www.esn.org  57


Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Annex 2: Questionnaire Dear participant,

We are pleased to invite you to participate in our study on living, working, and studying abroad. We are interested in your experiences abroad. But we also would like to know the opinions of students of not been abroad. We invite all current students and all former students (those who finished university not later than 5 years ago) to fill in our survey. Please read the questions carefully. The survey mainly consists of multiple-choice questions. All answers will remain anonymous. The results will be used for internal and scientific purposes; no answer will ever be traced back to you personally. Answering the survey takes around 15 minutes, and you have the opportunity to win a flight voucher worth 125 Euros. The ESNSurvey is based entirely on volunteer work of ESN members and we are grateful for your support of our research and your time to fill in the survey! If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the ESNSurvey Team: survey@ esn.org

Survey 2013: Exchange: Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity This survey can be filled in by any current or former student (who graduated in the last 10 years) at a higher education institution.

Part 1. International Experience Studying abroad refers to studies at a university or any other higher education institution different from the country you finished high school in. 1. Have you ever studied abroad? a. Yes b. No

58


2. [If, 1 b] Are you planning to study abroad? a. Yes, I am actually going to study abroad next year/semester. b. Yes, but did not arrange it yet c. No, I am not planning to go, even if I could go d. No, I cannot go abroad for different reasons (family obligations etc) e. I don’t know yet 3. [If, 1 a] Please choose the country of your host university (the country you studied abroad in If you have studied abroad more than once, please only refer to your most recent experience.): drop down 4. [If, 1 a]Please choose the university you studied abroad at If you have studied abroad more than once, please only refer to your most recent experience.: drop down 5. [If, 1 a] How long did you study abroad? (in months) If you have studied/worked abroad more than once, please only refer to your most recent experience. Insert number 6. [If, 1 a] What was your overall level of satisfaction with your stay abroad during your studies? If you have studied abroad more than once, please only refer to your most recent experience. I was: Very dissatisfied

rather dissatisfied

neither dissatisfied nor satisfied

rather satisfied

very satisfied

7. [If, 1 a] What was your overall level of satisfaction with the quality of your studies abroad? If you have studied abroad more than once, please only refer to your most recent experience. I was: Very dissatisfied

rather dissatisfied

neither dissatisfied nor satisfied

rather satisfied

very satisfied

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

8. Have you ever worked abroad (Job, internship, volunteer work)? a. Yes b. No 9. [If,8 a] Concerning your work abroad, what type of work or internship was it? (Please choose more options if you had more than one working experience abroad) a. Regular paid employment b. Summer job c. Erasmus placement (internship) d. Leonardo placement (internship) e. Other internship f. Volunteer work 10. [If,8 a] Please choose the country in which you have done your placement: drop down 11. Have you ever lived abroad for at least 3 months? a. Yes b. No

Part 2. Employability 12. What is your work/employment situation? a. I am formally employed full time b. I am formally employed part time c. I work but am not formally employed (I do internship, volunteer work or vocational training) d. I do not work e. I have my own business f. Other 13. Where do you currently live? (Choose all options that apply) a. I live in the region where I grew up b. I live in the country where I grew up c. I live in a country that is different from the one I grew up (I live abroad) 14. Where are you realistically likely to live in about 5 years from now? a. In the same village/town/city I am living now

60


b. Within the same region of my country c. Within my country d. Within countries whose official language is the same as my mother tongue e. Within the European Union f. Within geographical Europe g. Within and Outside Europe (anywhere)

15. Where would you like to work? (choose all options that apply) a. In countries with a higher living standard than my home country b. In countries with a similar living standard than my home country c. In countries with a lower living standard than my home country d. Living standard is not important for me when choosing a place to work. e. I do not know 16. Last time you looked for work/internship, what sources did you use? My personal network (friends, family‌) a. State Employment agencies b. Other than state Employment agencies c. Job search engines/websites with job announcements? d. University career services/office e. General online research (Google, Bing etc.) f. Announcements in Newspapers, magazines g. Job fairs h. Directly contacted potential employers i. Other j. I have not so far looked for a job/internship 17. In which languages do you search for job announcements? (multiple options) a. In my mother tongue(s) b. In English (if not your mother tongue) c. In languages different from my mother tongue(s) and English

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

18. Concerning work, which statement most closely represents your situation? Strongly Disagree

Somewhat Disagree

Neither Agree nor Disagree

I already have the job that I want

1

2

3

I have a job but would like to work in a different field

1

2

I have a very concrete idea of my future job

1

I have no idea what job I want to have/work I want to do

1

Somewhat Agree

Strongly Agree

Not applicable

4

5

6

3

4

5

6

2

3

4

5

6

2

3

4

5

6

19. About your professional career, in what position do you realistically see yourself in 5 years? (choose all that apply) a. Specialist in my field b. Position with limited or no responsibility for other employees c. Supervisory role (leader, director, manager of a small team) d. Leading executive position (leader, director, manager of a big team/whole company) e. Having my own company 20. I believe the following characteristics reflect my personality? Strongly Disagree

Somewhat Disagree

Neither Agree nor Disagree

I am confident

1

2

3

I am ambitious

1

2

3

I am energetic

1

2

I am focused

1

2

I am empathic (i.e. recognize what others feel)

1

I do not mind conflicts I am open-minded

Strongly Agree

NA (Not Applicable)

4

5

6

4

5

6

3

4

5

6

3

4

5

6

2

3

4

5

6

1

2

3

4

5

6

1

2

3

4

5

6

I am creative

1

2

3

4

5

6

I am independent

1

2

3

4

5

6

62

Somewhat Agree


21. The following features make a job attractive to me? Strongly Disagree

Somewhat Disagree

Neither Agree nor Disagree

Possibility to travel

1

2

3

Cooperation in international environment

1

2

High salary

1

Opportunities for advancement/ promotion

1

Working independently

Somewhat Agree

Strongly Agree

NA (Not Applicable)

4

5

6

3

4

5

6

2

3

4

5

6

2

3

4

5

6

1

2

3

4

5

6

Ability to contribute to your community or to a right cause

1

2

3

4

5

6

Job related to my studies and other previous experience

1

2

3

4

5

6

Good Family/Life balance

1

2

3

4

5

6

Good welfare and social security

1

2

3

4

5

6

Pleasant work environment (e.g. working conditions and relationships with colleagues)

1

2

3

4

5

6

Being acknowledged for your efforts

1

2

3

4

5

6

Flexibility of the working time

1

2

3

4

5

6

Part 3. Your social network (friends, colleagues, family and other contacts) All the contacts you have create a social network. Contacts can of private and professional character. 22. How do you try to meet people who could help you in finding work? Check all that apply. a. Professional meetings (e.g. conferences, job fairs etc.) b. Online (e.g. social networking sites) c. Your current place of employment (e.g. company committees, relations with other companies/customers) d. Your current place of study (relations with classmates) e. Community activities (volunteering, city council involvement) f. Student or alumni organisations g. I do not try to meet/contact people to find work h. other 63


Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

23. How do you usually make friends? a. I prefer a small circle of friends but very close ones b. I like to meet many people and have a wide circle of regular friends c. I do not spend much time with other people, but I prefer to spend time by myself 24. In what situations do you count on your friends/family? (please choose all that apply) a. When I am looking for work b. When I have personal problems c. When I want to have fun d. When I need information for my work e. For personal reasons (friendship, socialising, sports etc.) f. To find a job g. To get interesting information h. For doing business i. other ___________ 25. Which social network services do you use? (please choose all that you use) a. Facebook b. LinkedIn c. Xing d. Google+ e. Skype f. MSN g. Twitter h. other (name it) 26. [If, 25 a] How many friends do you have on Facebook? Number (can be estimated)

Part 4. Entrepreneurship 27. Do you consider starting your own business/company? a. I definitely do not consider it b. I am not sure c. I could imagine doing this one day d. I have already done it and still do it e. I have already done it and finished it 64


28. The following things discourage me from starting my own business: Strongly Disagree

Somewhat Disagree

Neither Agree nor Disagree

I am afraid of the business failing

1

2

3

The current economic crisis

1

2

I do not have the management skills

1

There is a lot of paper work/ bureaucracy involved

Somewhat Agree

Strongly Agree

NA (Not Applicable)

4

5

6

3

4

5

6

2

3

4

5

6

1

2

3

4

5

6

I will have to work long hours

1

2

3

4

5

6

I have no starting capital

1

2

3

4

5

6

I have no good idea for a business

1

2

3

4

5

6

I do not have confidence

1

2

3

4

5

6

I have no prospective business partners

1

2

3

4

5

6

I have no support from government (financial, know-how)

1

2

3

4

5

6

I love my current job

1

2

3

4

5

6

29. [If, 1 a or 8 a]While studying or doing an internship abroad, did you meet someone that you could imagine starting a business with? a. Yes b. No 30. [If, 1 a or 8 a] While being abroad, did you encounter new products/services that you could imagine being useful in your home country and that could be a good idea for a business? a. Yes, and I started a business that used this idea b. Yes and I am thinking of starting my own business using this idea c. Yes, but I will not do anything with the ideas d. No

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

Part 5. European Citizenship 31. How well do you feel informed about the European Union? a. Very well b. Rather Well c. Rather Poorly d. Very poorly 32. People’s interest sometimes varies across different areas of politics. Are you personally very interested, fairly interested, not very interested or not at all interested in? Not at all interested

Not very interested

Fairly interested

Very interested

Local politics

1

2

3

4

National politics

1

2

3

4

European politics

1

2

3

4

International politics

1

2

3

4

33. People have different views about themselves and how they relate to the world. Please indicate how strongly you agree or disagree with each of the following statements about how you see yourself? Strongly disagree

Disagree

Agree

Strongly agree

I see myself as a world citizen

1

2

3

4

I see myself as a part of my local community

1

2

3

4

I see myself as a part of my nation

1

2

3

4

I see myself as part of the European community

1

2

3

4

I see myself as an autonomous individual

1

2

3

4

A single person can exert influence on the European development

1

2

3

4

34. Did you vote in the elections for the European Parliament in 2009? a. Yes b. No, because I was too young (not legally able to vote) c. No, because my country was not part of the European Union at that time d. No, because of other reasons

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35. [If, 1a or 8a or 11a] Do you feel more European now that you have lived abroad? a. Yes, I feel more European b. Yes, I feel a bit more European c. Nothing changed d. I fee l less European 36. [If, 35 a or b] What does it mean to you to feel more European? Open field

Part 6. Student Organisations Part 6a. Erasmus Student Network (ESN) 37. [If, 1a or 8a] Was there an ESN section at your host university? a. Yes b. No c. I don’t know 38. [If, 37a] Please evaluate how satisfied or dissatisfied you were with the following activities offered by ESN. If you haven’t participated or these activities were not organised by the ESN section, please choose “I did not use/not offered”. Activities

very dissatisfied

rather dissatisfied

neither dissatisfied nor satisfied

a) Orientation week/welcome week

1

2

3

b) Parties/informal meetings

1

2

c) Buddy/mentor system

1

d) Trips and visiting tours

1

e) Integration into the local community

rather satisfied

very satisfied

I did not use / not offered

4

5

6

3

4

5

6

2

3

4

5

6

2

3

4

5

6

1

2

3

4

5

6

f) Offering discounts with ESN Card

1

2

3

4

5

6

g) Cultural events

1

2

3

4

5

6

h) Social Erasmus activities

1

2

3

4

5

6

i) Overall satisfaction with ESN

1

2

3

4

5

6

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Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity | Results of the ESNSurvey 2013

39. [If, 37a] Before going abroad for your studies or internship, did you do volunteer work (in an association, church, community, student union)? a. Yes, regularly (more than 2 hours a week) b. Yes but not regularly (a few times a year) c. No, never 40. [If, 37a] Did the work of ESN volunteers encourage you to do volunteer work yourself? a. I was already very active in volunteering before I met ESN. b. Yes, I joined ESN at my home university after coming back from abroad c. Yes, I joined a different voluntary organisation after coming from abroad d. Yes, I am interested in volunteering for a volunteer organisation, however have not done it yet e. No.

Part 6b. Other Student Organisations 41. [If, 1 a]Was there any other student organisation at your host university helping exchange and international students besides ESN? (Please refer to the one that helped you the most) a. Yes: Please specify name of the organisation: __________ b. No c. I don’t know 42. [If, 41a] Please evaluate how satisfied or dissatisfied you were with the following activities offered by this student organisation. If you haven’t participated or these activities were not organised by the student organisation, please choose “Not applicable”. Activities

Very dissatisfied

Rather dissatisfied

Neither dissatisfied nor satisfied

a) Orientation week/welcome week

1

2

3

4

5

6

b) Parties/informal meetings

1

2

3

4

5

6

c) Buddy/mentor system

1

2

3

4

5

6

d) Trips and visiting tours

1

2

3

4

5

6

e) Integration to the local community

1

2

3

4

5

6

f) Cultural events

1

2

3

4

5

6

g) Overall satisfaction with the student organisation

1

2

3

4

5

6

68

Rather satisfied

Very satisfied

I did not take part (Not applicable)


43. [If, 41a] Before going abroad for your studies or internship, did you do volunteer work? a. Yes, regularly (more than 2 hours a week) b. Yes but not regularly (a few times a year) c. No, never 44. [If, 41a] Did the work of the volunteers of this student organisation encourage you to do volunteer work yourself? a. I was already very active in volunteering before I met this student organisation. b. Yes, I joined a similar organisation at my home university after coming back from abroad c. Yes, I joined a different voluntary organisation after coming from abroad d. Yes, I am interested in volunteering for a volunteer organisation, however have not done it yet e. No.

Part 7. Demographic information 45. Age: insert number 46. Gender: a. Female b. Male 47. Major/area of studies (current or the faculty you graduated from): • Agricultural sciences • Architecture/Urban and Regional planning • Art and Design • Business Studies/Management Science • Communication and Information Sciences • Economics • Education – Teacher Training • Engineering Technology • Geography/ Geology • Humanities • Languages and Philological Sciences • Law • Mathematics/informatics • Medical Science • Music • Natural Sciences • Social Sciences • Other Areas of Study 48. Please choose the country of origin: drop down

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49. Year of graduation of latest programme of studies at the university (please indicate your expected graduation if you haven’t graduated): drop down • Before 2005 • 2005 • 2006 • 2007 • 2008 • 2009 • 2010 • 2011 • 2012 • 2013 • 2014 • After 2014 50. What is the level of your highest degree? a. High School (I am still studying) b. Bachelor c. Master d. PhD 51. Personal Information (optional) If you want to participate in the lottery for the flight voucher please indicate your name and email address. We will never publish your email address or hand it on to third parties. We only need this information to inform you in case you win the flight voucher. Name Email

______________________ ______________________

Thank you for your participation! We really appreciate your time. You can download the reports from previous editions of the survey at http://www.esn.org/content/esnsurvey. Erasmus Student Network AISBL (link to www.esn.org on the name of ESN)


ESN AISBL Rue Hydraulique / Waterkrachtstraat, 15 B-1210 Saint-Josse-Ten-Noode / Sint-Jost-ten-Node Brussels BELGIUM Tel.: +32 (0) 22 567 427 www.esn.org If you have any questions or would like to know more about ESN, please contact us directly at secretariat@esn.org. For any information regarding the ESNSurvey, directly contact the ESNSurvey team at survey@esn.org.


ESNSurvey 2011 Exchange, Empolyment and Added Value

ESNSurvey 2010 E-Value-ate Your Exchange

ESNSurvey 2009 Provision and Quality

ESNSurvey 2008 Exchanging Cultures

ESNSurvey 2007 Generation Mobility

ESNSurvey 2006 Exchange students’ right

ESNSurvey 2005 The experience of studying abroad for exchange students in Europe

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

ESNSurvey 2013  

Creating Ideas, Opportunities and Identity