European Association for the Education of Adults https://eaea.org Wed, 02 Mar 2022 13:07:57 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8.3 https://eaea.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/cropped-eaea-logo-svg-2-32x32.png European Association for the Education of Adults https://eaea.org 32 32 EAEA stands firmly in solidarity with the people of Ukraine https://eaea.org/2022/02/24/eaea-stands-firmly-in-solidarity-with-the-people-of-ukraine/ https://eaea.org/2022/02/24/eaea-stands-firmly-in-solidarity-with-the-people-of-ukraine/#respond Thu, 24 Feb 2022 13:01:32 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=17138 To our colleagues and friends in Ukraine and their affiliates, We stand firmly in solidarity with the people of Ukraine today. EAEA has advocated for non-formal adult learning and education to promote peace, democracy and solidarity since 1953. Adult education is transformative and connective for individuals, communities and society. Our values are democracy, mutual understanding... View Article

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To our colleagues and friends in Ukraine and their affiliates,

We stand firmly in solidarity with the people of Ukraine today. EAEA has advocated for non-formal adult learning and education to promote peace, democracy and solidarity since 1953. Adult education is transformative and connective for individuals, communities and society. Our values are democracy, mutual understanding and tolerance, respect for human rights and transnational and intercultural dialogue. 

In these years, we have had the opportunity to appreciate the extraordinary work of our colleagues in Ukraine in defence of these democratic values and human rights. Rest assured that the European adult learning and education community will offer you and your families every possible support.

By bringing people together, adult education has been instrumental to foster equity, cooperation and resilient communities. Violence and war have no place in Europe: generations of Europeans, including adult learners and educators, have devoted their lives to building peace and solidarity. We cannot let anyone take away the foundations of our democratic societies. 

EAEA calls for a diplomatic solution to the crisis to protect the people of Ukraine and our shared values, while assuring assistance and humanitarian aid to those in need.

In solidarity,

The European Association for the Education of Adults

Reactions of EAEA members and affiliated organisations

Expression of solidarity with Ukraine from La Ligue de l’Enseignement France

Appeal from the AdB European and International Civic Education Commission

Open letter from the Ukrainian Association of Adult Education

Statement of the DARE network

Light show of Lisbon City Council to show solidarity with Ukraine

Expression of solidarity of the Latvian Adult Education Association

Expression of solidarity of the Association of Estonian Folk High Schools

Statement of EAEA’s European umbrella association CONCORD

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Upskilling Pathways needs to put learners at the centre https://eaea.org/2022/02/23/upskilling-pathways-needs-to-put-learners-at-the-centre/ https://eaea.org/2022/02/23/upskilling-pathways-needs-to-put-learners-at-the-centre/#respond Wed, 23 Feb 2022 16:49:38 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=17131 Download and read EAEA’s feedback to the public consultation. Feedback from EAEA members, based on the survey conducted for the EAEA Country Reports 2021, shows a varied picture of implementation. Upskilling Pathways has prompted national strategies to focus on basic skills and validation of skills acquired through non-formal and informal learning. However, it has had... View Article

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Download and read EAEA’s feedback to the public consultation.

Feedback from EAEA members, based on the survey conducted for the EAEA Country Reports 2021, shows a varied picture of implementation. Upskilling Pathways has prompted national strategies to focus on basic skills and validation of skills acquired through non-formal and informal learning. However, it has had some detrimental effects on adult learning in some countries where funding for adult learning has been channelled from larger target audiences to the narrower target group of persons considered to have low(er) basic skills; thereby also narrowing the focus of adult learning and education in general. 

Upskilling Pathways do not always seem to reach the most vulnerable target groups, for instance women who are inactive in the labour market and older workers (e.g. in Hungary). The general figures on participation in adult learning also do not allow any conclusions to be drawn on whether previously “inactive” groups are brought into learning through Upskilling Pathways. A number of countries also note that there is a lack of infrastructure to implement the Upskilling Pathways. Guidance measures are not sufficiently available everywhere; however, they would be in a central position to address target groups with low skills.

What emerges is that those countries that have integrated Upskilling Pathways into a broader lifelong learning strategy are most likely to reach the target groups and build innovative upskilling programmes. Furthermore, those countries that succeed in involving other stakeholders, e.g. labour market services, but also social partners, are more successful in upskilling. EAEA members argue that Upskilling Pathways requires a holistic approach that needs not only the education sector but also the active engagement of employers, social services, labour market services, etc. in order to reach key target groups and make progress in the implementation of the strategy.

EAEA would like to highlight some key recommendations for the broader and better implementation of the Upskilling Pathways Recommendation.

Financing:

  1. Prioritise and invest in ALE, basic skills, and outreach in a systemic and stable manner. 
  2. Quality requires sufficient funding for investments in ALE infrastructure, initial and further training of adult educators and adult learning staff.
  3. The Recovery and Resilience Fund must be an additional source of funding and should not replace pre-existing financial supports. 
  4. Provide funding and support learning within communities, cities and regions. 

Governance:

  1. Strengthen the governance of adult education and basic skills through national lifelong learning strategies. 
  2. Ensure adult education and basic skills are linked to existing social inclusion and outreach strategies. 
  3. Strengthen non-formal education and learning structures. 
  4. Provide incentives and support for the professional development of adult educators through cooperation with relevant higher and further education institutions.

Cooperation:

  1. Put learners at the centre, involving them in consultation and decision-making processes. 
  2. Reinforce cooperation between ministries, sectors, institutions and services of different fields. 
  3. Ensure cooperation between civil society and non-formal learning providers. 

Inclusion:

  1. Analyse and remove barriers.
  2. Ensure that priority target groups can access learning opportunities free of charge.
  3. Adopt and promote inclusive language in both policy design and implementation. 
  4. Facilitate the involvement of health and social care practitioners in the design and day-to-day implementation of inclusive Upskilling Pathways. 

Skills addressed:

  1. Ensure that Upskilling Pathways include skills that help learners thrive not only as workers, but also as active citizen. 
  2. Provide language learning and mobility opportunities to everyone in the EU, including migrants and refugees. 

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Applications are open for the 2022 Grundtvig Award https://eaea.org/2022/02/21/applications-are-open-for-the-2022-grundtvig-award/ https://eaea.org/2022/02/21/applications-are-open-for-the-2022-grundtvig-award/#respond Mon, 21 Feb 2022 10:13:47 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=17118 Since 2003, EAEA is recognizing adult education projects inside and outside Europe demonstrating innovation and excellence in adult education. The Grundtvig Award highlights projects producing new and innovative ideas, partnerships, methodologies and a understanding of how we can work with adult learners. We have chosen Transformative Learning and Values as our annual theme, because we... View Article

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Since 2003, EAEA is recognizing adult education projects inside and outside Europe demonstrating innovation and excellence in adult education. The Grundtvig Award highlights projects producing new and innovative ideas, partnerships, methodologies and a understanding of how we can work with adult learners.

We have chosen Transformative Learning and Values as our annual theme, because we want to use global challenges for a positive change. In 2022 we are looking for initiatives that fulfill one or more of the following aims:

  • Support a paradigm shift in our understanding of learning towards an idea of critical thinking rather than content-driven knowledge
  • Further the understanding of each person’s role in society and strengthen their advocacy skills
  • Activate networks and partnerships in ALE to support transformative learning opportunities
  • Support initiatives that foster open-ended learning opportunities detached from any labour market orientation
  • Further the potential of ALE providers to offer transformative learning opportunities

Application deadline is the 31st of March. Read more about the Grundtvig Award call 2022!

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“We need rights-based education about digitalisation” https://eaea.org/2022/02/08/we-need-rights-based-education-about-digitalisation/ https://eaea.org/2022/02/08/we-need-rights-based-education-about-digitalisation/#respond Tue, 08 Feb 2022 08:33:17 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=16998 What was the main purpose of the initiative? “We think that many Europeans have the feeling that digitalisation is an ambiguous thing, and they don’t feel competent to talk about it. Digitalisation is also reduced to the tools aspect, how to use MS Teams©, mobile communication, or platforms”, says Nils-Eyk Zimmermann from Arbeitskreis deutscher Bildungsstätten... View Article

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What was the main purpose of the initiative?

“We think that many Europeans have the feeling that digitalisation is an ambiguous thing, and they don’t feel competent to talk about it. Digitalisation is also reduced to the tools aspect, how to use MS Teams©, mobile communication, or platforms”, says Nils-Eyk Zimmermann from Arbeitskreis deutscher Bildungsstätten e. V. (AdB).

“The idea of DIGIT-AL (Digital Transformation in Adult Learning for Active Citizenship) is to get a broader picture of what digital competence means as the sum of skills, knowledge, attitudes, and values, as well as to tackle the digital transformation as a social-political issue. The project explores the potential of Education for Democratic Citizenship and/or Human Rights education for education and learning about digital transformation.

This means we should focus also on learning what datafication and platformization mean for us as citizens, employees, and private persons, in all the different social roles. Many of these activities, which we call a pedagogy of the digital, are explored in the youth field, but adult learners also need this knowledge.

For instance, we now have the Digital Market Act and the Digital Service Act in Europe. We are discussing the rebranding of Facebook as Meta and we are questioning the practices of big companies. These things are affecting the people in Europe. Civic education can offer a unique perspective which is lacking in learning about the digital in Europe. The idea of the DIGIT-AL project was to bring this topic and approach to the adult educators.”

How did the project foster digitalisation and democracy?

“We want to raise the question of learning about human rights in the adult education community.

There is no knowledge about platforms or acting as data producers in most competence networks. They are just focusing on user behaviour. What we want to include in the digital competence frameworks relates to democracy.

When you know your rights, you are able to have a constructive attitude towards digitalisation.

The quality in the pedagogy of the digital in Europe should reflect the democratic, decentral, and open development of the internet in Europe. If we are just focusing on optimising user behaviour, there is no difference between the Russian, North American, European or even Chinese frameworks for digital competence.

That is why we say the difference in civic education is the democracy and human rights aspect. We are asking if not rights-based education about digitalisation should get more emphasis because it’s not only about copyrights and privacy. It is also about autonomy. It is about the rights that we have as Europeans. And when you know your rights, you are able to have a constructive attitude towards digitalisation.”

What was the best practice learned from this initiative that you want to share?

“One best practice in the project was the inspiration from digital and data activism, research, art and other experts outside the educational sector – and their willingness to share and discuss with us. There is a huge potential for cooperation and cross-sectoral exchange. The educational sector should take the first step because the others don’t see education as their priority. We can learn from them, and we can help them to pedagogize their activities.

Do-it-yourself is having a renaissance in other education fields, and we should bring it back to digitalisation.

Since we are doing civic education, our natural approach was to go to the digital activists. We can learn from their attitude to digitalisation. “Hacking pedagogy” means not to see systems as closed, but as something which you can use for your purposes. Do-it-yourself is having a renaissance in other education fields, and we should bring it back to digitalisation.

Educational institutions should not stop with the experience that they have gained during COVID-19 using platforms like Teams or like Zoom. We should also promote the alternatives: the privacy-sensitive, decentral and collaborative non-profit tools.

Also, we need to be more in touch with the digitalisation policy. So, when we are discussing the Digital Market Act and Digital Service Act in Europe, the education sector should be involved in these debates. They are far-reaching and when the decisions are made, they are fixed.

DIGIT-AL is involved in the redesign or the further development of the European digital competence framework. We also gave our position to the Digital Education Action Plan. I think the project may have identified a gap in the learning sector.”

Text: EAEA
Photos: DIGIT-AL

co-funded by Erasmus+ programme logo

DIGIT-AL project

Name: DIGIT-AL Digital Transformation in Adult Learning for Active Citizenship
Funding: Erasmus+
Coordinator: Arbeitskreis Deutscher Bildungsstätten (AdB)
Contact: Nils-Eyk Zimmerman, zimmermann(at)adb.de
Partners: DARE Network (Belgium), Jaan Tõnissoni Instituut (Estonia), Rede Inducar (Portugal), Partners Bulgaria Foundation (Bulgaria), Izglītības attīstības centrs (Latvia), Centro per la Cooperazione Internazionale (Italy)
Focus: Exploring the potential of Democratic Citizenship/Human Rights education in learning about digital transformation
Links: https://dttools.eu/

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Fighting exclusion through proximity, accessibility, and engagement https://eaea.org/2022/01/19/fighting-exclusion-through-proximity-accessibility-and-engagement/ https://eaea.org/2022/01/19/fighting-exclusion-through-proximity-accessibility-and-engagement/#respond Wed, 19 Jan 2022 08:43:18 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=16917 What was the main purpose of the initiative? “The #GEMMA project was driven by the aim of reducing the cultural and digital gap, as well as supporting the right to lifelong learning in the small Municipalities of Umbria”, says Project Manager Anna Schippa from Giove in Formatica srl, partner of the project. “By promoting the... View Article

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What was the main purpose of the initiative?

“The #GEMMA project was driven by the aim of reducing the cultural and digital gap, as well as supporting the right to lifelong learning in the small Municipalities of Umbria”, says Project Manager Anna Schippa from Giove in Formatica srl, partner of the project. “By promoting the access for the citizens of all ages to free formal and informal learning opportunities, we wanted to strengthen inclusion in the digital society and improve people’s quality of life through digital means. The aim was also to foster the public administration digitalisation of regional programmes with reference to the Umbria Digital Agenda.

These goals, defined long before the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, became even more urgent as the lockdown period and health emergencies influenced people’s daily routine by intensifying social isolation and exclusion. Especially during that period, #GEMMA aimed to develop common digital skills and culture, by meeting citizens’ increasing digital needs.

Furthermore, the #GEMMA project focused on improving people’s well-being, helping them to recognise the positive value, as well as the risks, of digital resources. This mainly concerned two target groups, which are in many ways opposite to each other: On one hand, the elderly and their fear of specific information sources and means, and on the other hand, the children and teenagers, who need guidance in digital life more than ever before.”

GEMMA project banner with cartoon character wearing a mask and text in Italian

How did the project foster digitalisation and democracy?

“The project was devised to operate in the territories that, due to their population or geography, are less exposed to digital inclusion. Therefore the people have a greater need for the development of digital skills required to exercise their rights and citizenship. The project aimed to “bridge the gaps” (physically and metaphorically) between small towns and rural areas and central government administrations, paying particular attention to the use of public utilities and e-government services.

The key words of the #GEMMA project strategy were “proximity”, “accessibility” and “engagement”. The main skills transfer method was non-directive oriented collective learning, with activities carried out in various informal locations (senior centres, youth centres, schools, and recreational clubs). This follows the principle that entertainment should reach the user, rather than vice versa, thus encouraging involvement of the people living far from the big urban centres.

The distance activities (Facebook live broadcasts, workshops on Zoom) allowed citizens to enjoy learning despite the measures imposed by the government. They also enabled support to people facing financial, health and traveling difficulties and allowed to promote the right to use public online services throughout a period of great social hardship.

The choice of the channels followed the principle of maximum democratisation. Workshops were held on Zoom, one of the most used video conferencing platforms during the first lockdown and live activities were held on YouTube (and Facebook) to allow participation without registering on any social media.”

Map of Umbria, Italy, with the project areas highlighted in different colours
GEMMA regions
two women looking at computer

What was the best practice learnt from this initiative that you want to share?

“Many best practices should be highlighted: The first is the engagement strategy for local bodies and associations in the project territories. The project involved more than 70 local bodies, voluntary associations, social promotion associations, citizens committees, schools and cultural organisations.

This was a remarkable achievement, backed by the Umbria Region’s public notice. It was strongly supported by the project group and the stakeholders who were called upon, according to their specific nature, to co-plan and promote the activities, host the meetings, and engage the citizens through their direct channels in order to meet the needs of the different territories and citizens. This effort should be acknowledged, since it happened during the most difficult stages of the healthcare crisis. When the COVID-19 emergency monopolised the agenda of the local administrations, it strongly affected local associations which were suddenly hindered by restrictions.

Another aspect to be highlighted refers to the methodological nature of the activities: Activities were made simple, based on single meetings, (although linked by a logical thread for priority target groups) held on different days and times, on a large schedule of more than 1440 hours of free entertainment. The participants had the chance to choose the meetings they wanted to take part in according to their specific needs, without being trapped in a structured and pre-set path. This was very appreciated, especially within the framework of the distance activities.”

Text: Sima Alia Ramos, EAEA & #GEMMA project
Photos: #GEMMA project

#GEMMA project

Name: #GEMMA il Sapere è Prezioso – Knowledge is Precious
Country: Italy
Coordinator: Comune di Montone
Contact: Anna Schippa, schippa@azione.com
Focus: Inclusion for digital society and digital citizenship
Links: https://www.facebook.com/gemmaprogetto
www.progettogemma.it

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EAEA country reports 2021 published https://eaea.org/2021/12/22/eaea-country-reports-2021-published/ https://eaea.org/2021/12/22/eaea-country-reports-2021-published/#respond Wed, 22 Dec 2021 09:19:31 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=16910 In 2021, EAEA members reported updated ALE strategies being drafted or adopted. In some countries, new strategies on sustainability are being launched, encouraging cross-sectoral cooperation to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). That said, in many countries the implementation of SDGs and the involvement of the ALE sector remain fragmented.  The COVID-19 pandemic continued to... View Article

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In 2021, EAEA members reported updated ALE strategies being drafted or adopted. In some countries, new strategies on sustainability are being launched, encouraging cross-sectoral cooperation to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). That said, in many countries the implementation of SDGs and the involvement of the ALE sector remain fragmented. 

The COVID-19 pandemic continued to affect adult learning provision. While a shift to predominantly online learning encouraged new learners to enrol, it also constituted a significant barrier for the most vulnerable adults. Those who did not feel digitally competent or confident, facing inadequate digital infrastructure or equipment continued to lose out on learning opportunities. To encourage participation in ALE, several ALE organisations in Europe improved their outreach work in 2021, for example by strengthening collaborations with local services. 

The 2021 country reports also clearly indicate that the ALE sector in Europe uses a diversity of funding tools, which include project funding, programme funding, fees and structural funding, to name a few. Some members reported that the policy response to the COVID-19 pandemic had led to more funding for ALE; others regret that recovery strategies target predominantly the labour market, leaving out liberal adult education. 

The reports are based on submissions from 37 EAEA member organisations representing 25 European countries. They can be explored through thematic tags and graphs comparing qualitative data.

Read the country reports on our dedicated website countryreport.eaea.org.

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We need to scream loudly about adult education: advocacy at the heart of EAEA training programmes in 2021 https://eaea.org/2021/12/21/we-need-to-scream-loudly-about-adult-education-advocacy-at-the-heart-of-eaea-training-programmes-in-2021/ https://eaea.org/2021/12/21/we-need-to-scream-loudly-about-adult-education-advocacy-at-the-heart-of-eaea-training-programmes-in-2021/#respond Tue, 21 Dec 2021 08:38:23 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=16888 Digitalisation takes centre stage at the EAEA YST 2021 How can we make a strong case for adult learning, no matter what context we work in? What challenges do we share across Europe?  How do European strategies in adult learning fit into national and regional policies in adult learning? These were some of the issues... View Article

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Digitalisation takes centre stage at the EAEA YST 2021

How can we make a strong case for adult learning, no matter what context we work in? What challenges do we share across Europe?  How do European strategies in adult learning fit into national and regional policies in adult learning? These were some of the issues discussed by the participants of the ninth edition of the EAEA Younger Staff Training (YST), which took place between 13 and 17 September 2021 and welcomed 15 participants from across Europe. For the first time, the YST took place in a hybrid format: while most participants joined the face-to-face training in Brussels, Belgium, a few were unable to travel and opted for virtual sessions. 

The need to offer new and flexible approaches to learning has also been extensively discussed by the YST participants. During the training, looked at how the COVID-19 pandemic has transformed adult learning practice in the past year and a half, sharing inspiring approaches and initiatives. During study visits at Maks and BeCentral, the participants got to exchange with other professionals who work directly with adult learners on the impact of digital transformation. They also reflected on their own practice from the perspective of change-oriented education at the workshop based on the results of EAEA’s FutureLabAE project. 

zoom participants
EAEA Younger Staff Training took place in hybrid format.

An input session with Klara Engels-Perenyi from the European Commission introduced the participants to recent EU strategies in adult learning, such as the European Skills Agenda as well as the new European Agenda for Adult Learning, which has since been officially adopted. During a hands-on workshop, they got to try out planning their own advocacy campaigns that would highlight the benefits of adult learning to policymakers. 

The programme of the YST was very rich and really insightful. At the same time, I learned a lot from the fellow participants when they talked about their home countries and their experiences. It was an interesting exchange,” said Saambavi Poopalapillai, a participant representing the Swiss Federation for Adult Learning, who attended the face-to-face edition of the YST. 

It’s been fantastic to be able to attend the course virtually as I could combine it with my current work as a teacher. The course gave me new perspectives on the approach of ALE providers and useful tools for ALE advocacy. I will for sure use them in the near future,” shared Anna Delort from ACEFIR, who attended the virtual sessions from Girona. 

Making adult learning a priority: shared challenges and opportunities 

“The New European Agenda for Adult Learning supports adults in becoming agents of change,” said Teja Dolgan, Head of Adult Education at the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport in Slovenia. Ms Dolgan was a guest speaker at the EAEA Executive Staff Training (EST), a virtual seminar that took place on 7 December 2021.

The text of the New European Agenda for Adult Learning (NEAAL) had been finalized with the strong support of the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the EU, and is likely to have a significant impact on the adult learning and education sector in Europe. The NEAAL is an ambitious policy document, outlining a plan for the further development of, in particular, community and non-formal ALE. That said, its take-up in EU Member States depends on the national context and Ms Dolgan encouraged the participants to actively promote the document.

More than a policy update, the seminar intended to bring together executive staff of major adult learning organisations in Europe to discuss shared challenges in advocacy. 14 participants from across the continent exchanged on the priorities of their advocacy strategies, contact building and examples of successful campaigns. EAEA is looking forward to organising the next edition of the EST, scheduled to take place in Brussels in the autumn of 2022.

For more information about EAEA webinars and training programmes, please consult our website or contact our Head of Capacity-Building Aleksandra Kozyra at aleksandra.kozyra (at) eaea.org.

zoom picture of participants
Participants of the Executive Staff Training 2021.

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EAEA’s working group publishes context paper on digitalisation and democracy https://eaea.org/2021/12/20/eaeas-working-group-publishes-context-paper-on-digitalisation-and-democracy/ https://eaea.org/2021/12/20/eaeas-working-group-publishes-context-paper-on-digitalisation-and-democracy/#respond Mon, 20 Dec 2021 15:28:47 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=16860 Having chosen our annual topic in 2021 digitalisation and democracy, EAEA, together with its partners, has not only dedicated this year’s Grundtvig award to digitalisation and democracy but has invited key stakeholders to join a working group on digitalisation. EAEA and the other representatives of the working group from Dafni Kek, CPIP Romania, Associação Portuguesa... View Article

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Having chosen our annual topic in 2021 digitalisation and democracy, EAEA, together with its partners, has not only dedicated this year’s Grundtvig award to digitalisation and democracy but has invited key stakeholders to join a working group on digitalisation.

EAEA and the other representatives of the working group from Dafni Kek, CPIP Romania, Associação Portuguesa para a Cultura e Educação Permanente (APCEP), the Câmara Municipal de Lisboa, the Arbeitskreis deutscher Bildungsstätten (AdB), the German Institute for Adult Education (DIE), and the Lernraum.Wien are publishing their “Context Paper: Digitalisation and Democracy”. The paper is the result of extended research, meetings and discussions and reflects the current state of the conceptualisation of democracy and digitalisation and their representation in adult education and learning. 

The paper has a closer look at the conceptualisation of democracy within the context of digitalisation, the power conditions and dynamics in the digital space, as well as digital politics and digitalisation in the public space. It also briefly discusses digital rights in Europe and addresses digitally excluded groups. In this, it focuses on adult learners, teachers and educators, their digital competences and also the role of ALE in Democracy and Digitalisation.

You can find the paper and the policy recommendations on our annual theme page on digitalisation.

We wish you a pleasant read and invite you to let us know what your thoughts are!

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CONFINTEA VII needs a strong civil society representation https://eaea.org/2021/12/20/confintea-vii-needs-a-strong-civil-society-representation/ https://eaea.org/2021/12/20/confintea-vii-needs-a-strong-civil-society-representation/#respond Mon, 20 Dec 2021 11:03:49 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=16869 Read EAEA’s full statement: https://eaea.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/CONFINTEA-statement_December-2021_final.pdf  CONFINTEA VII, the International Conference on Adult Education, is expected to take place in Morocco in June 2022. The conference, held every 12 years, brings together governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental stakeholders from across the globe and is the only global process that is focused on adult learning and education (ALE).... View Article

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Read EAEA’s full statement: https://eaea.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/CONFINTEA-statement_December-2021_final.pdf 

CONFINTEA VII, the International Conference on Adult Education, is expected to take place in Morocco in June 2022. The conference, held every 12 years, brings together governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental stakeholders from across the globe and is the only global process that is focused on adult learning and education (ALE). Throughout 2021, EAEA has followed up with its members on the preparations for CONFINTEA VII, and is concerned that there has been relatively little involvement of civil society at the national level in Europe.

EAEA has drafted a series of recommendations to improve the preparatory process for CONFINTEA VII and to advocate a global political commitment to ALE:

  • Civil society needs a seat at the table at CONFINTEA VII. In many European Member States of UNESCO, civil society organisations lack information about the preparatory process for CONFINTEA at the national level and they were not consulted, or informed, when national surveys were being drafted. Civil society representatives in ALE can provide a comprehensive picture of what has been achieved since the last CONFINTEA and offer concrete recommendations on how ALE can be improved. They should also be invited to join national delegations to the conference.
  • The CONFINTEA process should become more transparent to allow all stakeholders to have insight into ongoing developments and actively provide input. More information about the CONFINTEA process on UNESCO websites, including at national level, would be desirable, as well as the possibility of a hybrid conference to allow online participation of those who cannot travel to the conference, while giving CONFINTEA more visibility through greater participation and engagement.
  • Non-formal adult learning and education needs political recognition to make a lasting societal and economic impact. In spite of the commitments made in the Belém Framework for Action in 2009, this is still not the case in many European countries, with some EAEA members reporting outdated legislation, inadequate funding and information gaps. A political commitment to adult learning and education needs to be reflected in structures that support civil society, in a commitment to quality and professionalisation of ALE provision, in adequate funding mechanisms for ALE, in binding and updated legislation, and in comprehensive data collection.
  • While many of the commitments made in the Belém Framework for Action have stayed relevant, new issues have emerged in the past years, not least because of the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The upcoming CONFINTEA must recognise the complexity of adults’ personal and professional pathways and make a strong case for supporting learners in transitions. Adult learning and education should foster a wide set of life skills, such as learning to change, critical thinking, as well as health, civic, digital and environmental capabilities. More holistic approaches are needed to ensure that adult learning is not reduced to providing a skilled workforce in times of an economic crisis.
  • The ongoing pandemic has also clearly demonstrated that vulnerable groups remain the first ones to lose out on learning opportunities. CONFINTEA VII must urge UNESCO Member States to identify adults who are consistently left behind and to offer a targeted strategy to reach them. Recommendations on effective guidance and validation systems, as well as on outreach strategies should be part of an overarching set of commitments to improve adult learning and education in Europe and globally. Learner-centred approaches and learner representation should also be encouraged to ensure that learning provision remains relevant.

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More inclusion requires adequate funding and support https://eaea.org/2021/12/17/more-inclusion-requires-adequate-funding-and-support/ https://eaea.org/2021/12/17/more-inclusion-requires-adequate-funding-and-support/#respond Fri, 17 Dec 2021 07:46:21 +0000 https://eaea.org/?p=16853 Read EAEA’s full statement: More inclusion requires adequate funding and support. Reaction to the Commission Implementing Decision on the framework of inclusion measures of the Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps Programmes 2021-2027 (pdf) The European Association for the Education of Adults (EAEA) welcomes the European Commission’s initiative to promote inclusion through its Implementing Decision on... View Article

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Read EAEA’s full statement: More inclusion requires adequate funding and support. Reaction to the Commission Implementing Decision on the framework of inclusion measures of the Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps Programmes 2021-2027 (pdf)

The European Association for the Education of Adults (EAEA) welcomes the European Commission’s initiative to promote inclusion through its Implementing Decision on the framework of inclusion measures of the Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps Programmes. 

That said, a truly inclusive programme needs to be reflected in adequate funding and support. EAEA has put forward the following recommendations: 

  • More funding for learning activities and national agencies: Within the budget framework of individual projects, more resources need to be allocated to allow for the additional support and flexibility of learning programmes for learners with disabilities or fewer opportunities. National agencies also need adequate funding to recruit experts and design national action plans that meet the real needs of learners as well as to actively reach out to organisations that promote the learning of adults with disabilities and fewer opportunities.
  • More support for organisations: Staff development, infrastructural support and guidance for organisations and learning providers are needed to ensure high quality projects that meet inclusion standards. 
  • Easier accessible information: Information on learning opportunities should be provided through national or European catalogues or information websites. These need to be designed according to the criteria of accessibility and barrier-free, i.e., in simple language, easy to navigate and controllable by voice or other input tools.
  • Involvement of all relevant stakeholders in the design of inclusion action plans: This is crucial to ensure that the voice of learners with disabilities or fewer opportunities are taken into account.
  • Revision of the structural parameters in Erasmus+: The current parameters lead to an institutionalisation of projects and administration, and can only insufficiently include the desired target groups due to the low flexibility in the project structures.

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