Besa Shahini is a Hertie School Fellow (Henrik Enderlein Fellowship), focusing on the EU enlargement process. Previously, Besa served as the Minister and Deputy Minister for Education, Sports and Youth in the Republic of Albania. Most notably, during her mandate she spearheaded distance and blended learning policy and practice for all levels of education in Albania. In addition, Besa managed an ambitious higher education reform process, leading to improved quality of education, improved student access and experience, as well as better education-to-work transition. In the decade and a half prior to joining the Albanian government, Besa focused her research and advocacy on education and EU integration issues in the Western Balkans and South Caucasus. She worked for think tanks – some of which she founded – in Berlin, Istanbul, Tbilisi, Prishtina and Sarajevo. Besa holds a Master of Public Policy from the Hertie School in Berlin.