BELLCURVE (Built Environment Lifelong Learning Challenging University Responses to Vocational Education) was a European Commission funded research project conducted at the School of the Built Environment, University of Salford, UK, in collaboration with Department of Construction Economics and Property Management, Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Lithuania and Department of Building Production, Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia. BELLCURVE ran from October 2009 to January 2012.
This project addressed issues associated with the mismatch between graduate skills and labour market requirements particularly in the Built Environment sector. In addressing this, BELLCURVE considered ‘student engagement’ as a continuous through-life process rather than a temporary traditional engagement limited by the course duration. This through-life studentship defines the essence of the new innovative “Lifelong University” concept, whereby providing an opportunity for learners to acquire and develop skills and knowledge enabling responds to changing construction labour market needs on a continuous basis. This requires a reform in governance systems based on strategic priorities to respond labour market needs effectively while promoting the lifelong learning agenda.