Europe’s knowledge economies need high-level skills, the capacity to innovate and to support democratic societies. In this perspective, the main objective of this study is to provide a comprehensive analysis of the relevance of higher education and how this is promoted in various countries in Europe and beyond. The evidence, conclusions and recommendations are intended to support EU Member States in developing and improving policies that promote the relevance of higher education: for students; for graduates; for employers; and for society. On the basis of a review of relevant literature,... policy documents and databases, consultation with national experts and eight in-depth country case studies (Canada [Ontario], the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands and Spain) that included interviews with many national stakeholders, this study seeks to answer the following questions: How is the relevance of higher education defined in different member states? Which policy levers do member states use to promote higher education relevance? Which national policies concerning higher education relevance appear to be effective and good practice examples? Which indicators are informative in assessing higher education relevance at system level? How can an analytic and diagnostic tool be designed and developed that can provide a systematic assessment of the relevance of higher education systems?