EU launches ambitious ‘European Education Area’ project

EU launches ambitious ‘European Education Area’ project

The European Education Area might just have become a reality with the European Commission this week announcing the first “European Universities” alliances.

In an attempt to enhance the quality and attractiveness of European higher education and boost cooperation between institutions, their students and staff, the ambitious plan has been initiated in Brussels with the aim to set up 17 European Universities.

European Education Area develops

17 European Universities involving 114 institutions out of 54 applications received from 24 Member States were selected by the EU.

Tibor Navracsics, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, said: “I am pleased to see the ambition of the first 17 European Universities, which will act as role models for others across the EU. They will enable the next generations of students to experience Europe by studying in different countries. I am convinced that this initiative, a key building block of the European Education Area, will be a real game changer for higher education in Europe, boosting excellence and inclusion.”

The selected higher education institutions span a wide range from universities of applied sciences, technical universities and universities of fine arts to comprehensive and research-intensive universities.

A total budget of up to €85 million is available for the first 17 “European Universities” with a maximum of €5 million allocated per alliance in the coming three years.

‘European Universities’ European Education Area project in numbers.
Credit: European Commission

This first call – together with a second one to be launched this autumn – will test different models to implement the new concept of European Universities and its potential to boost higher education.

Background to European Universities plan

The European Commission proposed the project in November 2017.

After being endorsed by the European Council, which called for the emergence of at least 20 European Universities by 2024, the project is part of the push towards establishing a European Education Area by 2025.

Photo credit: Sara Kurfeß

Hari Srinivasan - Managing Editor, Global Education Times (GET News)

Hari is the Managing Editor of Global Education Times. Hari has clocked nearly a decade working as a communications professional with a focus on the education sector. He has also had stints in journalism and advertising in a career which has seen him live, study, and work, in three countries.
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