The CONNECT project aims to leverage the impact of Learning Cities through building urban ecosystems of lifelong learning that harness the assets of European cities and transform them into a network of seamless pathways of learning experience for adult learners. In a society where existing educational pathways no longer guarantee opportunity, and with a growing gap between the haves and the have-nots, connected learning for all citizens can open up new entry points and pathways to opportunity; in particular when integrating both the potential of ubiquitious learning technology and learning opportunities created by European cities.
On 25th January the first EU Education Summit with 18 Education Ministers and 450 Experts took place in Brussels. The Education Summit is another step on the road to a European education space, which the Commission intends to create by 2025. In the future, European education summits will take place regularly - the second is scheduled for autumn 2019.
EU Commissioner Tibor Navracsics said: "We must harness the full potential of education to build stable societies, to empower citizens, to experience European identity in all its diversity. To achieve this, we want to promote language learning and ensure that degrees are recognized throughout the EU, that European higher education institutions can work together optimally and that studying in other EU Member States is even easier. These are factors that make up real European education space, and the Summit is a concrete step in that direction. "
The aim of the summit was to create: »the Foundation for a European Educational Space: Realizing Innovative, Inclusive and Value-Based Education«. Accordingly, the following questions are in the center of attention: How can high-quality, inclusive and value-based education contribute to the success of Europe? What skills will be needed in the coming decades? And how can the acquisition of basic skills as well as digital and entrepreneurial skills be advanced?
SIM Europe's most recent european-wide expert survey reveals lack of reform towards establishing lifelong learning in several EU countries. According to the experts, in ten countries, no reforms have been undertaken aimed at improving financial or human resources for lifelong learning. Moreover, the researchers see a great need for reform in many countries regarding the strong influence of social origin on educational success. Six countries were not active in this regard: Croatia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Slovakia and Spain.
The European Digital City Index 2016 (EDCi) describes how well different European cities support digital entrepreneurship. It aims to provide a holistic and local view of what matters to digital startups. According to the developers (Nesta), it is the most complete description of what impacts digital entrepreneurs on a local level, and how different digital startup ecosystems compare within Europe.
To help cities better address challenges such as Inclusion of Migrants and Refugees, Poverty, and to make the most out of EU funding opportunities, the European Commission has launched a new web portal during the European Week of Regions and Cities.
On 30. May 2016 an informal meeting of EU Ministers with responsibility for urban affairs took place in Amsterdam, at the initiative of the Dutch Presidency. During this meeting an "Urban Agenda for the EU", also called "Pact of Amsterdam", has been established. The goal is networking and knowledge sharing of city authorities at European level, also to achieve better regulation and the promotion at EU level.
PROMOTE is a EU-funded project that started in 2014 and will be completed in October 2016. The project aims at promoting and validating social, personal and organisational key competences such as entrepreneurship, civic competences and learning to learn with the help of an innovative, self-directed learning approach at the interface of higher education and business.
This project aims at developing an awareness raising campaign for the validation of learning outcomes of non-formal and informal learning as a tool to further improve adults’ career perspectives and stimulate their further education and training.
We welcome you to join us for the CHOICE Final Event that will take place on the 19th October 2015 in Lisbon, Portugal. This event will take place one day before the ICT 2015 event (Click here to know more details about this event), involving the high participation of the European Commission's policies and initiatives with regard to R&I in ICT.