Articles taggés avec ‘education’

Structural Funds: A helping hand for the start of the new school year

Vendredi 5 septembre 2008

As the holidays draw to a close, it’s a good time to remember that €43.1 billion will be invested in education in the 27 EU member states from now until 2013 by means of the Structural Funds

EU Funding: Educating for enterprise in Europe

Jeudi 28 août 2008

If the European Union is to meet the “growth and jobs” objectives of the Lisbon strategy, it must foster a more enterprise-friendly culture



 European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
 Grants for projects that promote entrepreneurship and innovation culture.
 Award aiming at raising awareness of enterprise activities and celebrate entrepreneurial success

The crucial role of education in promoting more entrepreneurial attitudes is now widely recognised and an ongoing EU project is looking in depth at how to foster greater entrepreneurial awareness in higher education curricula.

The ‘entrepreneurial gap’ between Europe and other countries, notably the USA, has been identified as a barrier to economic growth: Whilst in Europe only 45% of the population would like to be entrepreneurs, in the USA the equivalent figure is over 60%. This is largely due to cultural factors, and low awareness of the advantages of starting your own business. Teaching young people about entrepreneurship and equipping them with basic entrepreneurial skills, whatever their area of study, has been identified as a key way of increasing Europe’s enterprise potential.

The wider picture

The Entrepreneurship in Higher Education project was launched in 2006 with the objective of analysing the current state of play in Europe with regard to the teaching of entrepreneurship in higher education, particularly in non-business courses. It consists of two main parts: an expert group(1) report and a Europe-wide survey.

The Expert Group met six times in Brussels over a period of two years and its final report was published in April 2008. It is now being widely disseminated to ministries and educational institutes in all Member States.

The ‘Entrepreneurship in higher education, especially in non-business studies’ report provides a preliminary overview of the teaching of entrepreneurship in higher education institutes in Europe, with particular attention to entrepreneurship training in non-business studies. It attempts to identify obstacles to the provision of teaching in this area and highlight examples of good practice, while examining the potential role of public policy in improving the current situation.

Open for business

The experts’ report finds that the teaching of entrepreneurship is not yet sufficiently integrated in the curricula of higher education institutions and that the majority of entrepreneurship courses are offered as part of business and economic studies. Teaching of entrepreneurship is particularly weak in some of the new Member States. This is in part due to a lack of financial and human resources for this type of education, but also to a certain rigidity in institutional structures and educational curricula.

Teaching entrepreneurship requires an inter-disciplinary and action-oriented approach, including, for example, group and team techniques for creating new business ideas, the use of case studies and multi-disciplinary business planning workshops. At present, teaching staff have few incentives to get involved in this type of activity, and links with the business sector need to be cultivated more widely.

A range of solutions

In order for entrepreneurship education to be integrated more widely in non-business studies, action is required at several levels. For public policy, the experts suggest national task forces be set up to examine how best to integrate entrepreneurship into curricula from primary to advanced levels, as well as the adoption of legislation to support relations between private business and universities. It also proposes the development of an accreditation system and the establishment of awards for institutions which lead the way in this field.

At institutional level, they propose a range of initiatives aimed at fostering a more entrepreneurial culture within each institution, and creating incentives for the involvement of students, teaching staff and external organisations. There is also a role for the European Commission, which could support programmes for the training of entrepreneurship teachers and the creation of European networks and cross-border exchange initiatives.

The experts report moreover provides several examples of good practice and suggests a number of possible courses of action which would help to foster better integration of entrepreneurship studies in European education. The report will, however, be supplemented by a more in-depth survey, across all Member States, the results of which are due to be released in autumn 2008.

Enterprise & Industry online magazine

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EU Funding: Tempus offices in Jerusalem and Ramallah to upgrade co-operation on education and training

Mercredi 16 juillet 2008

 European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
 Grants for the enhancement of quality in higher education and the promotion of intercultural understanding through co-operation with third countries
 Grants for co-operation projects in the field of education and training between the EU and its Neighbouring countries

The European Commissioner for Education, Training, Culture and Youth, Ján Figel’, today opened a National Tempus Office in Israel and reopened one in the occupied Palestinian territory

The move intensifies co-operation on education and training matters with Israel and the Palestinian Authority. Both Israeli and Palestinian universities now fully profit from participation in the EU’s external co-operation programmes in higher education, Tempus and Erasmus Mundus.

The Tempus programme started life in 1990, following the fall of the Berlin Wall. It is now in its fourth iteration, and there are 28 participating partner countries. The National Tempus Offices will serve as focal points and facilitators on the ground, and have the mission to contribute to the relevance, effectiveness and impact of the Tempus programme.

The National Tempus Office opened at the Council of Higher Education in Jerusalem is the first ever such office in Israel, which joined the Tempus Programme at the beginning of its present, fourth phase (2007-13). Under the first Tempus IV invitation to submit projects for support, eight Israeli institutions participated in projects submitted as partners, and there were two projects in which institutions from Israel were involved as coordinators.

In Ramallah, the Commissioner will today re-open the National Tempus Office, to be hosted by the Palestinian Ministry of Education and Higher Education. Palestinian participation in the Tempus programme dates back to 2002, and most of its higher education institutions have participated in the programme through 11 Joint European Projects and three Structural Measures. In addition, 49 Individual Mobility Grants have been awarded to university professors. The opening of the Tempus Office will give Palestinian higher education institutions the possibility to build on previous activities and re-establish their participation in the Tempus programme.

Israeli and Palestinian universities are also participating in Erasmus Mundus, the EU’s co-operation and mobility programme in the field of higher education which promotes the EU as a centre of excellence in learning. Erasmus Mundus provides - inter alia - scholarships for high calibre third-country students and academics to participate in joint masters courses selected under the programme.

The main share of funds under Erasmus Mundus is for mobility actions, which means that students and scholars are the main beneficiaries of the programme. By the end of the academic year 2008-09, ten Palestinian students and scholars, and 54 from Israel will have profited from this. Another 161 students and academics from Palestinian and 139 from Israeli universities will have been supported through the complementary External Co-operation Window, which promotes inter-university partnerships between EU and neighbourhood universities. Several Israeli and Palestinian universities also participate in cooperation projects with Erasmus Mundus masters courses and in projects that aim at enhancing the attractiveness of European Higher Education in the world.

Press room - European Commission

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EU Funding: Erasmus Mundus: successful Lebanese students and scholars receive scholarships to study in the EU

Mardi 8 juillet 2008

 European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
 Grants for the enhancement of quality in higher education and the promotion of intercultural understanding through co-operation with third countries
 Grants aiming at co-operation in higher education between the EU and Third-Countries through a co-operation and mobility scheme addressing students and academic staff.

Over thirty-eight Lebanese participants have benefited from the EU’s Erasmus Mundus programme to date. Nine students and one scholar from Lebanon have been selected to receive an Erasmus Mundus Masters Courses scholarship for the academic year 2008/09

These scholarships will allow them to study in Europe for one or two years and obtain a Masters degree from one of the 103 top-quality Erasmus Mundus Masters Courses offered by consortia of European higher education institutions. These ten Lebanese participants can be added to the eleven other successful Lebanese candidates that took part in Erasmus Mundus Masters Courses in 2007/8 and the 17 Lebanese students hosted in EU universities as part of the Erasmus Mundus scheme of exchanges (Erasmus Mundus External Co-operation Window – EM ECW).

The Erasmus Mundus programme is the EU’s co-operation and mobility programme in the field of higher education. It aims to enhance quality in European higher education and to promote intercultural understanding through co-operation with third countries. It supports European top-quality Masters Courses and also provides EU-funded scholarships for third country nationals participating in these Masters Courses (students, and scholars for teaching and research activities). The programme also provides scholarships for EU-nationals studying at partner universities throughout the world. The Masters Courses are high-quality Masters level programmes designed and offered by a consortium of higher education institutions in at least three different European countries. They address all fields of study. Each course must foresee a study period in at least two of the three institutions, and should last from one to two academic years. 21 Lebanese students and scholars have been selected to follow Masters Courses in European universities in 2007/8 and 2008/9. They are from the Lebanese University, Université Saint Joseph, the American University of Beirut and Notre Dame University.

The European Commission has also launched the Erasmus Mundus External Co-operation Window (EM ECW) which offers 1 to 34 months exchanges to undergraduate, masters, doctorate and post-doctoral students as well as academic staff. To date, this exchange scheme is limited to two Lebanese universities, the American University of Beirut and the Lebanese University, which are members of a university consortium lead by the Lund University from Sweden. In the EM ECW 2007 selection round, 5 EU students were selected to be hosted in Lebanese universities, while 17 Lebanese students are hosted in EU Universities.

Apart from the Erasmus Mundus programme, the European Commission supports the development of the higher education sector in Lebanon through its Tempus programme for inter-university cooperation. Under this programme, curricular reform and governance reform have been selected as priorities for the years 2007-2013. Since 2003, Lebanon has benefited from almost EUR 7 million.

Additional information

More than 2,000 students and 450 teaching staff from outside Europe have been selected to receive an Erasmus Mundus scholarship for the academic year 2008/09.

In 2008, a total number of 17 new partnerships of Erasmus Mundus Masters Consortia with higher education institutions in non-European countries were selected. Altogether, they encompass 62 universities from 28 different third countries. These 17 partnerships foresee an outgoing mobility of an estimated 477 European students and 192 European scholars over the next two years. The partnerships allow European higher education institutions, scholars and students to strengthen their ties with other higher education environments in the world.

This latest selection completes the first phase (2004-2008) of Erasmus Mundus. In total, more than 6,000 students will have received an Erasmus Mundus scholarship to obtain a degree in Europe over the five-year period. Over the same period, more than 1,000 teaching staff from third countries have been given an Erasmus Mundus scholarship to actively contribute to Masters courses in teaching or research activities.

The second phase of Erasmus Mundus (2009-13) is expected to start in 2009 with a planned total budget of 950 million euros. Its main new features are the inclusion of joint doctoral programmes, increased scholarships for European students and an intensified structural cooperation with third-country higher education institutions. In addition, the new proposal integrates a mobility scheme for all levels of higher education.

EC Delegation to Lebanon

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EU Funding: Erasmus programme receives award for the second time in 2008

Lundi 30 juin 2008

 European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
 Grants for students and teachers mobility projects, for networks and partnerships in the field of higher education

The EU’s Erasmus Programme, which promotes student and staff exchanges in higher education, has been awarded the “Chemical Engineering Medal” from the University of Valladolid, Spain

The award, handed over on 27 June 2008, is a recognition of the programme’s contribution to academic and professional performance in chemical engineering, a section of Valladolid’s university in which almost 80 % of students participate in an Erasmus exchange. This is already the second award Erasmus received in Spain this year.

The President of the Chemical Engineering Section at the University of Valladolid, Prof. Maria José Cocero Alonso, handed out the “Chemical Engineering Medal” to the EU’s Erasmus programme at the 2008 graduation ceremony on 27 June 2008.

According to the University of Valladolid, student and staff mobility has always been considered as one of the most relevant aspects in its undergraduate and graduate training. In recent years, almost 80 % of its chemical engineering students spent at least one semester at one of the university’s 27 partner universities across Europe under an Erasmus exchange agreement.

The Erasmus programme is a sub-programme of the EU’s global programme in the area of education and training, the Lifelong Learning Programme (LLP). Erasmus has an overall budget of approximately € 3.1 billion for the period 2007-2013, and aims at enhancing the quality and reinforcing the European dimension of higher education as well as at increasing student and staff mobility.

Currently, more than 3,100 higher education institutions in 31 countries in Europe participate in the Erasmus programme, which has so far supported 1.7 million students.

Founded in the early 13th century, the University of Valladolid is Spain’s oldest university and therefore the forerunner of many other prestigious universities in the country. The university has about 3,500 staff with campuses in four cities, enabling over 30,000 students to choose from more than 100 study programmes, 17 postgraduate programmes and 50 Master’s programmes. Since the beginning of the Erasmus Programme, the University of Valladolid has been an active partner and the leading European university in the mobility of teaching staff under Erasmus. More than 180 lecturers and 800 students from the university move abroad and at the same time more than 850 European students come to study in Valladolid, which holds the number 20 spot of the top 100 European universities under Erasmus.

This is already the second award for Erasmus in 2008: in May, the programme received the “Prize for Excellence in integrating young people into the workforce” from the NoviaSalcedo Foundation of Bilbao, Spain.

Press Room - European Commission

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EU funding: MEPs to vote on help for young farmers

Mardi 10 juin 2008

European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
Grants available for projects at local level focusing on the diversification of rural economies and the improvement of the quality of rural life, financed by the EARDF

While food production in the future is likely to rise, the future of the next generation of farmers is uncertain.

At present just 7.6% of farms in the European Union are run by people under 35. On Thursday Parliament will vote on a report by Italian MEP Donato Tommaso Veraldi (EPP-ED), which aims to make it easier for young people to enter the agri-business.
What is clear is that the profile of farmers is ageing. More than 50% of EU holdings are run by farmers over the age of 55, and 25% by farmers over the age of 65. In contrast only 7.6% of EU farms are run by people under 35 years of age.

The main goal of the Veraldi-report is to make it easier for young people to enter the agri-foods sector and, at the same time, to effect a “generation change” in order to make the sector more dynamic.

Young farmers - new burdens of farmers

The report notes that farms run by young people are on average more profitable and young farmers are more willing to adopt innovative solutions and use environment-friendly farming methods.

However, the changing nature of agriculture and the EU’s Common Agriculture Policy is imposing new burdens on young farmers, including high installation costs, resulting in heavy debt, a lack of available holdings and insufficient training. The CAP reforms also pose challenges, notably in meeting cross-compliance requirements - this is the requirement that farmers must meet minimum ecological standards or lose subsidies.

The report, adopted by Parliament’s Agriculture Committee on 6 May calls for young farmers to “take up the challenges arising as a result of more open world markets”. It also wants them to be more aware of the impact of climate change and says they should be made aware of their responsibilities with regard to combating climate change.

Better tools for farmers

The report also calls for the development of policies that give priority to helping young people to gain entry to a multifunctional farming sector. It also stresses the need for young farmers to be able to access information and tools enabling them to analyse market trends.

Next Monday 9 June, the Agriculture Committee will organise a public hearing on the CAP Health Check which aims to modernise and simplify the CAP and make the market more competitive.

European Parliament

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Eu funding : Young People and Tobacco – Show and Share Your Idea!

Mardi 27 mai 2008

 European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
 Grants for cooperation and exchanges in the field of youth and informal education and training.

Create a video, photo or comic strip to reduce smoking across Europe and to encourage a life without tobacco.

The materials produced will support the positive aspect of a life without tobacco. Young people´s empowerment and involvement in issues affecting their health and well-being should be underlined. There are four categories: best video, best “candid camera”, best photo, best comic strip.

Deadline: 30 June 2008.

This competition was launched by the European Commission’s Health & Consumer Protection Directorate (DG SANCO) in partnership with the European Youth Forum (YFJ) to involve young Europeans (aged 15 to 35) on matters affecting their health and well-being.

Youth in Action
  More information:
Help EU

Eu funding : Alterego European Competition

Jeudi 22 mai 2008

 European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
 Grants for cooperation and exchanges in the field of youth and informal education and training.

Create your “double portrait”!

Imagine you were born in another European country, who would you be? Where would you go? What would you look like? This pan-European competition engages young people (14 to 18 years old) in 22 EU countries to create a ‘double portrait’ using film, photography, painting, music or mixed-media, and show it to people across Europe. The winner will receive a week’s training from high-profile artists in Denmark (16th – 21st of November 2008) and his/her work might become part of an exhibition touring throughout Europe between January and March 2009.
The deadline for uploading material is 5 September 2008; winners will be announced the 3 October 2008.

Youth in action
  More information:
Alter Ego

Prevention crucial to new animal health plan

Mercredi 21 mai 2008

 European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
 Grants for the implementation of strategies responding to threats to health, especially communicable diseases

Animals in Europe - from wild and farmyard animals to domestic pets - could soon come under the remit of a proposed EU-wide animal health strategy

Bird flu, BSE and foot and mouth disease have shown the danger that outbreaks of animal disease can pose to animals, the wider economy and to humans themselves. A parliamentary report on proposals by the Commission calls for minimal animal transport and more stress on vaccination.

Precautionary measures such as disease surveillance, controls and research lie at the heart of the Commission’s “Animal Health Strategy 2007-2013″. Increasing public health and food safety and improving conditions for animals are just some of its aims.

As well as less animal transport and more use of vaccination Mr Wojciechowski would like to see restrictions on the size of farms. He believes that very large farms with large livestock herds pose more of a danger than small ones.

Members of the Agriculture Committee have already endorsed the Commission’s strategy and the changes proposed in the Wojciechowski report. On Thursday the full house will vote on the report. The Commission’s proposals must be adopted under the codecision procedure as they cover human health and food safety. If MEPs support the proposals the Commission is expected to release an action plan and timetable between July and September this year. What is absolutely clear is the determination never to repeat the human and environmental cost of previous disasters.

European Parliament

Debate on the digital future of Europe

Mercredi 14 mai 2008

 European funds

Related EU Grant Loans Programme(s):
 Grants for the development of an inclusive information society and more efficient and effective services in areas of public interest, and improvement of quality of life

How to respond to increasingly intense competition on the global market?

More than 250 million Europeans regularly use the internet, 80% of them have broadband connections. At the two-day conference ‘Information Society at the Crossroads’, which opened at Brdo on 13 May 2008, participants agreed that information and communication technology (ICT) is one of the most important driving forces behind economic and social modernisation. The conference, organised jointly by the Slovenian Presidency and the European Commission, is dedicated to the interim report on the i2010 Strategy (i2010 - A European Information Society for growth and employment), launched in 2005 as the first comprehensive policy framework for an integrated European information society, which proposed the following three priorities: establishment of a single European information space, strengthening innovation and investment in ICT, and achieving an inclusive European information society (that promotes growth and jobs in a manner consistent with sustainable development and prioritises better public services and quality of life).

The interim review of the i2010 initiative confirms the important contribution and role of ICT in assuring economic and social development in the European Union as well as the contribution of appropriate information society policies and media to achieving Lisbon objectives. The conference will therefore address topics of increasing importance for competitiveness and the deployment of ICT in Europe: the further development of networks and the internet (new generations) and bridging of the digital divide, the establishment of pan-European services (ensuring an efficient and operational single market for advanced e-products and e-services) and views of the end user as consumer and as active co-producer of digital content.

Compared with other industrial regions, Europe does not make sufficient use of the economic potential of the largest market in developed countries and fails to invest sufficiently in ICT. Mojca Kucler Dolinar, the Slovenian Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology and Co-President of the EU Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council, noted that “the Interim Report identifies important successes in implementation of the strategy in Member States, however between developed and developing EU Member States there are still appreciable differences which may threaten coherent development in the future. Activities and policies to promote competitiveness and reduce the differences between the more successful and the less successful should be planned in order to prevent fragmentation between Member States.” With regard to the interim report, Mrs Kucler Dolinar further pinpointed the provision and promotion of the free movement of knowledge and innovation - the ‘fifth freedom’, stressing the need for coordinated action and cooperation by all Member States in implementing the instruments supporting development at both EU level (e.g. the ICT Programme in the 7th Framework Programme) and national level and in the context of utilisation of EU structural funds.

Slovenian presidency