Higher Education and Research

Lifelong Learning for Equity and Social Cohesion

The project pursued political aims in a crucially important field for the future of the academic community in Europe: the challenge of lifelong learning, in line with the priorities defined by the Second Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe in October 1997, which called for a "new strategy of social cohesion" within the framework of democratic security. The specific role of higher education in this strategy is to combat exclusion and marginalisation by ensuring equality of opportunity in education and meeting the new demands raised by society following the profound political, economic and social transformations which have taken place in Europe.

The project addressed these issues in a number of case studies, expert reports, national papers, a Recommendation by the Council of Ministers on Higher Education Policies on Lifelong Learning adopted in 2002 and three specialised workshops on the following themes:

  • Meeting the needs of all students in a changing society (Bornholm-Denmark, 1999)
  • Application of new information and communication technologies in lifelong learning (Catania-Italy, 2000)
  • Structures and qualifications in lifelong learning (Kranjska Gora- Slovenia, 2000)

The Final Conference on the project held from 15 to 17 November 2001 in Paris discussed the main outcomes of the projects and some additional aspects of the theme, namely:

  • Financing and partnerships for equity: lifelong learning for all,
  • The University and lifelong learning: contributions and challenges,
  • National and European higher education policies in lifelong learning: lifelong learning and the European space for higher education.

Full report from the final conference can be obtained here.