Joint Programming Management (GPU) 2007-2013
The Joint Programming Management system (GPU in Italian) 2007-2013, headed by the Ministry of Education, Universities and Research (MIUR), is an environment for online governance of the National Operational Programmes (NOP) “Skills for Development” and “Learning Environments”. The programme, in close collaboration with SIDI – the MIUR’s information system for financial documentation – simplifies and improves the management, documentation and monitoring of school projects in the “Convergence Objective” Italian regions (former Objective 1 – Campania, Calabria, Puglia and Sicily), financed by the European Social Fund (ESF) and the European Regional Development Fund. (ERDF).
The system was developed in line with the cohesion policy and is based on EU regulations (nos. 1080, 1081, and 1083 of 2006), which invite every national managing authority, responsible for handling and implementing an operational programme, to “guarantee the existence of a computerised system to record and store data relating to each operation carried out as part of the programme, as well as the collection of data relating to the implementation necessary for financial management, supervision, checks, audits and evaluation” (Art. 60 of Regulation 1083/2006).
The GPU is the result of research and experimentation carried out by INDIRE in an innovative approach to documentation and monitoring. It was used as a prototype for Programming 2000-2006, and over the years, turned out to be an effective tool to manage programmes and monitor the progress of training and infrastructural interventions. The system was set up to address the management needs of schools – facilitating their participation in the programmes – and the management authority’s need to monitor, evaluate results, and planning. Thanks to its features and flexibility, GPU allows the management and documentation of complex processes (from planning to communication, and the dissemination of the results of the activities), supporting schools in the processes of self-evaluation, educational innovation and continuous improvement. To meet the need-to-know requirements of the managing authority, the supervisory body and the stakeholders involved, the system can also reveal the participation of all the operators, teachers, tutors and students in the Convergence Objective Regions and use structured investigations including interviews and questionnaires to look into, for example, the perception of the effectiveness of the educational provision.
GPU has been designed and developed by INDIRE’s project group which is committed to compiling monitoring reports on the progress of the interventions financed, as well as research into tools and methods for information, communication and documentation. In addition, the project group also carries out specific fact-finding surveys on the effects of the programmes in terms of innovation and improving education and training services, and provides assistance and technical consultancy to the recipients of the programmes. It also communicates ongoing projects results and activities, and supports recipients’ advertising and socialising initiatives.