What is Peer Review?
Peer Review is an external evaluation carried out by peers, i.e. colleagues working in similar institutions or environments. Peer Review is used in professional contexts when knowledge and expertise in a particular field of work are essential for an adequate evaluation. Peer Review has a long tradition in the evaluation of research. In the meantime, it has also been adapted for use in other areas which call for the assessment and development of professional activities.
European Peer Review Projects
Since 2003 Peer Review has emerged as a novel evaluation methodology. Between 2004 and 2009 three European projects adapted Peer Review for the external evaluationof institutions of vocational education and training across Europe. 15 European countries have taken part in these projects.
The main product, the "European Peer Review Manual", which describes a standard procedure for Peer Review, was awarded the Lifelong Learning Award in 2009.
Further information on the "roots" of the European Peer Review can be found at the projects' website www.peer-review-education.net.
Implementing Peer Review
The European Peer Review procedure as set down in the European Peer Review Manual is currently introduced as an external instrument for quality assurance in the vocational education and training systems in various European countries, among which are Finland, Italy, Hungary, Catalonia and Austria.