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Evidence-Based Governance in the German Educational System (SteBis) - An overarching program to support empirical educational reserach sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research


Funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, the overarching research program SteBis (Evidence-Based Governance in the German Educational System) draws together a multitude of scientists from universities and research institutes all over Germany, representing the educational and social sciences, as well as the fields of psychology and economics of education.

In 16 projects, these scientists aim to understand what effects the recently implemented “New Governance” strategies and instruments in the German school system have in practice, which factors might be hindering the use of the new instruments, and how these measures and instruments can be further developed in order to ensure a sustainable quality of school education. Research findings are presented in a scientific context as well as to governance actors across the educational system.


Funding: Federal Ministry of Education and Research

Project Management: Prof. Dr. Felicitas Thiel, Prof. Dr. Hans Anand Pant

Project Coordination: Dipl.-Soz. M.A. Jasmin Tarkian

Student Assistant: Rebecca Mehling

Funding Period: 2014-2017 (2. Funding Period)


Research Program

To examine recently implemented “New Governance” strategies and instruments in the educational system of Germany, a major research program was created by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. This program constitutes 16 research projects, located at different universities and institutes in different federal states.

The projects aim at examining the impact, utilization and inherent consequences of new governance strategies. Further, they examine the effects of different forms of evaluation (e.g. centrally administrated tests, school inspections, internal evaluation) and other reforms brought about by the “New Governance” (e.g. enlargement of school autonomy or principals` competencies). Focusing on different operational levels (e.g. school level, school supervisory board, educational policy and administration), the projects are conducted in different federal states and apply a multitude of research methods (e.g. case studies, standardized surveys, analysis of documents, network analysis, classroom videography).


Coordination unit

To interlink the participating projects, to support multidisciplinary academic collaboration and to process the findings adequately for political and practical purposes, a coordination unit for the research program was established at Freie Universität Berlin. The coordination site arranges cooperative publications and common symposia at (inter-)national conferences. Results will soon be presented in short reviews and user-oriented conferences for different professionals (e.g. teachers, school principals, supervisors). The coordination site aims at transferring empirical findings into practical solutions that can be implemented by school management and assist development (with regard to staff, curricula or classroom practices) in schools. 


Link to Stebis Homepage (English)