Erasmus+ is the EU Programme that supports the fields of education, training, youth and sport for the period 2014-2020 – these are the fields that can make a major contribution to help tackle socio-economic changes, the key challenges that Europe will be facing until the end of the decade and to support the implementation of the Europe 2020 strategy for growth, jobs, social equity and inclusion.
The Erasmus+ Programme is merging seven programmes and therefore provides opportunities for wide variety of individuals and organizations. The aim of Erasmus+ is to contribute to the achievement of:
- the objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy, including the headline education target;
- the objectives of the strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training (ET 2020) including the corresponding benchmarks;
- the sustainable development of the Partner countries in the field of Higher education;
- the overall objectives of the renewed framework for European cooperation in the youth field (2010 -2018);
- the objective of developing the European dimension in sport, in particular grassroots sport, in line with the EU work plan for sport;
- the promotion of European values;
The specific issues tackled by the programme include:
- Reducing unemployment, especially among young people
- Promoting adult learning, especially for new skills and skills required by the labour market.
- Encouraging young people to take part in European democracy
- Supporting innovation, cooperation and reform
- Reducing early school leaving
- Promoting cooperation and mobility with the EU’s partner countries
In order to achieve its objectives, the Erasmus + Programme implements the following actions:
KEY ACTION 1 – Mobility of individuals
Learning mobility opportunities aim to encourage the mobility of students, staff, trainees, apprentices, volunteers, youth workers and young people.
The role of the organisations in this process is to organise these opportunities for individuals. The benefits for the participating organisations equally include an increased capacity to operate at an international level, improved management skills, access to more funding opportunities and projects, increased ability to prepare, manage, and follow-up projects, a more attractive portfolio of opportunities for students and staff at participating organisations, the opportunity to develop innovative projects with partners from around the world.
KEY ACTION 2 – Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices
Key Action 2 is designed to develop the education, training, and youth sectors through five main activities:
- Strategic partnerships to support innovation in the sector as well as joint initiatives to promote cooperation, peer-learning, and the sharing of experience.
- Knowledge Alliances to foster innovation in and through higher education together with businesses, and beyond, contributing to new approaches to teaching and learning, entrepreneurship in education, and the modernisation of higher education systems in Europe.
- Sector Skills Alliances to tackle skills gap and ensure a better alignment of vocational education and training with labour market needs. There are opportunities to modernise VET, exchange knowledge and best practices, encourage working abroad, and increase the recognition of qualifications.
- Capacity-building projects in the field of higher education to support the modernisation, accessibility, and internationalisation of higher education in Partner Countries.
- Capacity-building projects in the field of youth to support the development of youth work, non-formal learning, and volunteer work, as well as promote non-formal learning opportunities with Partner Countries.
KEY ACTION 3 – Support for policy reform
Opportunities under this Key Action contribute to supporting the overall EU policy agenda, the Education and Training 2020 cooperation framework, and the Youth Strategy.
Organisations will contribute to improving the quality of education, training, and youth systems in Europe, as well as promoting transnational learning and cooperation between authorities. They will also contribute to developing the basis for evidence based policy-making, as well as supporting networks and tools for policy implementation.
Organisations will also contribute to improving the involvement of young people in democratic life and their engagement with politicians.