Building bridges through education in the Eastern Partnership 
May 31, 2024

Building bridges through education in the Eastern Partnership 

A new programme on ‘Supporting education reforms and skills in the Eastern Partnership region’ was officially launched this week by the European Training Foundation (ETF) and the European Commission’s Directorate-General for European Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR). 

The launch took place at a three-day event in Turin focusing on peer learning and evidence-based policy making.

The event highlighted the importance of cooperation and partnerships between different actors in the education sector to achieve concrete results in reforms at national level. 

“This event is not only about the launch of this transformative initiative in the Eastern Partnership region, but also a celebration of a comprehensive commitment to education and skills development from all the players. As the ETF, we recognise the unique needs of each partner country and advocate for multiple approaches tailored to their specific contexts,” said Pilvi Torsti, ETF Director.  

“Education is the cornerstone for building prosperous societies, and through joint efforts and innovative ideas we aim to create an education system that empowers individuals and fosters a better future for all,” she added. 

The programme, implemented in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine, is the first EU initiative focused on education in the region. With a budget of €2.5 million for the years 2024–26, it aims to have an impact at two main levels.  

First, it focuses on improving the governance of education systems from pre-primary to tertiary, including vocational and adult education. This links to the goal of strengthening the capacity for evidence-based planning, management and performance monitoring in the education sector. Secondly, it aims to inform the EU on priority needs and issues for policy dialogue and bilateral programming of the EU support. 

Iwona Ganko, ETF Human Capital Development Expert, emphasised the collaborative effort behind the initiative: “It’s not only about sharing experiences from EU Member States like France, Poland and Finland, but also about learning from each other within the region. We need to understand what is happening on the ground if we are to design the reforms effectively and support our stakeholders in the implementation.” 

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