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European Commission - Press release

European Union allocates new funding to boost higher education projects and improve teaching across the European Neighbourhood and Russia

Brussels, 05 July 2011 - Today, the Commission announced it would allocate €47 million to support higher education projects in the European Neighbourhood countries and Russia under the Tempus Programme. The new funding will improve teaching, learning methods and teaching material, as well as boost quality assurance and management of higher education institutions in the partner countries.

Today's decision will also enable enhanced networking and joint projects and partnerships to be set up between higher education institutions in the EU and European Neighbourhood countries. The money allocated under the Tempus Programme will support approximately 60 multilateral partnerships, aiming at modernising curricula, teaching methods and management of the colleges, schools and universities in the neighbouring countries.

Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy, Štefan Füle, underlined: "Investing in people is a key objective of the EU Neighbourhood Policy. Fruitful cooperation between higher education institutions in the EU and European Neighbourhood countries will be continued, helping to share knowledge, experience and ideas. The significant increase of funding to this programme illustrates the renewed commitment of the EU to support higher education in this region."

Overall, more than 450 institutions from these countries will have new opportunities to collaborate in a structured way with a similar number of institutions from the EU in two to three-year projects which will commence in 2012. Public and private companies and NGOs will be involved as well, to improve relevance and reinforce the links between society and education.

This allocation represents an increase of almost €17 million in comparison to last year's programme.

Background

Tempus promotes the development of higher education in the EU’s neighbouring partner countries and provides mechanisms to offer new learning opportunities for students and new career perspectives for academic staff

Launched in 1990 and now in its fourth phase, Tempus IV (2007-2013) supports the modernisation of higher education in particular in Eastern Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. It promotes academic cooperation and networking and encourages long-term structural collaboration among institutions. Academic and curricula development, the introduction of quality assurance mechanisms, the modernisation of infrastructures and teaching methods as well as the acquisition of management skills by academic and administrative staff are among the most important achievements of the programme.

100 different higher education institutions from the ENPI region have so far been awarded funding under Tempus IV, enabling students, academics and administrative staff to benefit from sources of new knowledge, teaching and learning. This represents more than 170 projects and thousands of people being exposed to the EU experience and the European Higher Education Area.

More info:

On Tempus:

http://ec.europa.eu/education/external-relation-programmes/doc70_en.htm

http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/tempus/index_en.php

On the Inter-regional Programme:

http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/where/neighbourhood/regional-cooperation/irc/education_en.htm

On the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP):

http://ec.europa.eu/world/enp/index_en.htm

Contact :

Anca Paduraru (+32 2 296 64 30)


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