Course description




The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the German Rectors’ Conference (HRK), the Universities of Saarland (Germany) and Alicante (Spain), in cooperation with the Alexander-von-Humboldt Foundation (AvH), are jointly organizing the DIES-International Deans’ Course for Latin America.

This intensive training course is part of the DIES program (Dialogue on Innovative Higher Education Strategies) which has been jointly coordinated by the DAAD and HRK since 2001 (

The DIES IDC LA is jointly coordinated by Saarland University and the University of Alicante. Both institutions have been cooperating for a long period of time in projects focused on the evaluation, development, and improvement of university management in Latin American higher education institutions.



Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the next edition of the DIES IDC LA will be adapted according to the global travel restrictions. If necessary, some parts of the course, or even the whole course, will be taught online.


Course Content, Methodology and Schedule

The DIES IDC LA aims to bring together a group of about 25 newly elected Deans and Vice-Deans from higher education institutions in Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay and Peru in order to enable participants to tackle the challenges posed by their new positions.
The course will be conducted in English and Spanish.
Training in both hard and soft skills will be key parts of this course and issues such as Strategic Faculty Planning, Financial Management, Quality Management, and Human Resources Management will be covered. Methodology will be strictly practice-oriented and mainly based on case studies. Personal experience as university manager will highly contribute to the content covered, as participants are expected to actively participate during the course.

Participants are expected to develop a Strategic Action Plan (SAP) for their own faculty. The SAP will comprise the characteristics of the faculty and strategies to be followed, the role of the participant in the proposed plan, and the underlying administration and procedures in the thematic areas of the course. In this framework, participants will develop and work on concrete measures to implement the proposed strategy in their own faculty.
Background knowledge on the SAP will be introduced during the first part of the course (Module I and Module II). In the second part of the course, continued work on the SAP will be supported via online SAP Coaching Sessions and Webinars. The third and last part of the course will offer participants the opportunity to reflect on the implementation of their SAPs and other reform projects discussed during the training.
Given that the entire content of the course is closely interrelated, participants are required to confirm their full availability to attend all onsite and/or online trainings prior to admission.
The following list shows the provisional schedule of the course, subject to change according to global travel restrictions at that time. All modules are expected to be conducted onsite (option A), unless otherwise indicated.

       Module I: 8-12 November 2021
       Option A: onsite in Saarbrücken, Germany (plus necessary travel time).
       Option B: online.

       Module II: 15-19 November 2021
       Option A: onsite in Alicante, Spain (plus necessary travel time).
       Option B: online.

       Webinars and SAP Coaching Sessions: from December 2021 to March 2022

       Module III: 28 March to 1 April 2022
       Option A: onsite in Latin America (plus necessary travel time).
       Option B: onsite in Saarbrücken, Germany – if Module I had to be implemented online (plus necessary travel time).
       Option C: online.



The final decision regarding the conduction of the modules will be made no later than 30 September 2021 for module I and Module II, and no later than 15 February 2022 for Module III. Should Module III be conducted onsite, the location of the module would be announced on the same date.


Participants’ Profile

  • Preferably, participants should be holding the position of Dean or Vice-Dean for no longer than 2 years. Applicants who hold other positions, such as Vice-President of Head of Department, should describe their area of responsibility. Applicants from administrative units are not eligible.
  • Preferably, participants should be aged 30–50.
  • Participants should be proficient in both English and Spanish. If needed, applicants might be required to pass an interview as part of the admission process.
  • Participants should hold a PhD.
  • International experience will be highly valued.
  • Being a DAAD alumnus is not compulsory but may be considered an asset.
  • Candidates from higher education institutions of the following countries are eligible to apply: Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay and Peru.



Throughout the course, participants will be hosted by Saarland University and the University of Alicante. Should one or more modules be conducted onsite, the following expenses would be covered by funds of the DAAD provided through the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ):

  • Travel costs (according to DAAD regulations):
    • Module I and Module II: outward flight to Germany, transfer flight to Spain, and return flight from Spain, as well as costs arising from required ground transportation in Spain and Germany.
    • Module III: outward and return flights within Latin America.
  • Accommodation and joint meals during presence phases in Europe and Latin America.
  • Emergency health insurance during presence phases in Europe.



If Module I or Module II can be conducted onsite, participants' home institutions will be expected to pay a tuition fee of 500 EUR. Otherwise, the cost will be reduced to 250 EUR. Additionally, participants must be able to cover local transportation in their home countries, visa costs and potential additional per diems for the duration of the onsite training.


Application and Selection Procedure

Application and Selection Procedure


Deadline: 24 May 2021, 23:59 CET
Applications must be submitted in English

Applicants will be informed about the result of the selection process in July 2021.


Applicants should apply at:
The following supporting documents should be included in the application in PDF format:

  • Cover letter (max. 2 pages).
  • Organisational chart of the higher education institution showing the section where the candidate is working in.
  • Endorsement letter from the higher education institution’s management board expressing conformity with the coverage of the tuition fees and the candidate’s active participation in the course. Depending upon the institutional circumstances arisen from the COVID-19 pandemic, this document might be submitted later. Should this be the case, the applicant’s institution would still be required to send an email supporting the candidate’s active participation in the course.
  • Proof of English proficiency in the form of a certificate (or equivalent document) will be an asset. Proof of Spanish proficiency will be also required for applicants from Belize. Phone interviews might be organised with shortlisted candidates to guarantee the requested proficiency.



The Selection Committe is composed of UoS and UA Academic Directors and Coordinators, DAAD and HRK members. Applications will be assessed by the Selection Committee according to the abovementioned participant's profile and supporting documents. To qualify for assessment, applicants should provide all supporting documents in English.



Contact Details

International Deans’ Course Latin America

Tel. +34 965 909718 (University of Alicante)
Tel. +49 681302-71121 (Saarland University)


Roberto Escarré

University of Alicante

International Project Management Office
Torre de Control, Planta Baja
03690 - San Vicente del Raspeig
Alicante, Spain

Tel.: (+34) 965 909718

Yaiza Andarias

Saarland University

International Office
Campus A 4.4, Room 2.36
66123 - Saarbrücken
Saarland, Germany

Tel.: (+49) 681 302 71121