Neth-ER: Erasmus++ must achieve internationalisation for all

22 november 2017

Erasmus+’s successor programme ("Erasmus++") should focus on improving the quality of education in the EU, providing ample opportunities for intercultural experiences for all Europeans and stimulating innovation in education. These are the key principles for Erasmus++ according to Neth-ER. At least 3% of the EU budget should be attributed to the programme to achieve these goals.

Achieve internationalisation for all

Neth-ER is of the opinion that Erasmus++ should reach beyond the ‘usual suspects’ and contribute to social cohesion on the European continent. To achieve this, more opportunities for short-term mobility should be created. This is one of the main messages presented in Neth-ER’s vision paper for Erasmus+’s successor programme (Erasmus++): ‘knowledge first’, in which three key principles and two key conditions for realising Erasmus++ are outlined.

Furthermore, a combination of physical and virtual mobility in blended learning approaches can increase both the impact and efficiency of the programme. Erasmus++ should also stimulate internationalisation at home and give each student the opportunity to benefit from intercultural experiences, even if they do not physically cross borders.

Focus on achieving long-term effects on European education

According to Neth-ER, it is essential that funds from Erasmus++ should continue to be employed to improve European education, the education policies and systems as a whole. In order to do so, more synergies with other EU programmes are needed. In addition, the core priorities of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) and the Copenhagen Process should be fully integrated into Erasmus++ to ensure that we fully exploit Europe’s potential. 

Ensure innovation in education

Further collaboration between different education sectors could contribute to innovation in education. To stimulate cross-sectoral cooperation, Neth-ER recommends separate cross-sectoral cooperation calls. To facilitate the exchange of good practices, eTwinning should be extended to all education sectors. Moreover, the funding for strategic partnerships and knowledge alliances should be increased.

Make Erasmus++ user friendly

New digital and paperless administrative procedures need to be introduced in order for Erasmus++ to function optimally and be attractive to a broad range of participants. In order to maximise the impact of the projects, open access of research outcomes and developed teaching materials should be ensured in a European Open Education Cloud.

Big ambitions require a bigger budget

Neth-ER argues that, in line with the Barcelona target on investing in knowledge, at least 3% of the EU budget should be allocated to Erasmus++. An absolute amount of at least 30 billion euros for the next programming period is necessary to allow Erasmus++ to realise its full potential and achieve real impact.

About this paper

This paper was drafted by Neth-ER and feeds into the consultation process organised by the European Commission to shape the next EU Education programme. Neth-ER is a Brussels-based association of twelve Dutch organisations working in the field of education, research and innovation. Neth-ER also provided input to the Erasmus+ mid-term evaluation.

More information

Publication Neth-ER: Vision paper for Erasmus++: Knowledge first
Publication Neth-ER: Vision paper for FP9: Knowledge first
Article Neth-ER: Neth-ER: Erasmus+ needs a bigger budget to realise full potential!

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