Hosted by the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education (MSHE), CAEP will organise a Regional Conference on “Enhancing cooperation in Higher Education between Central Asia countries and the European Union” in the premises of the Jagiellonian University in Cracow from November 16-18, 2016.
CAEP was established in 2012 by the EU to promote policy dialogue supporting reforms in the education sector in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
Following a Regional Conference on National Qualifications Frameworks (NQF) in Riga in April this year, the Cracow conference aims at facilitating exchange on the positive effects of internationalisation for modern education systems between representatives of Central Asia public authorities, education practitioners, business community, representatives of EU Institutions and Member States and international donors; furthermore, conference participants from all five Central Asia countries and the EU will gather ideas and developing recommendations for strengthening cooperation in Higher Education (HE) between the EU and CA countries.
This conference will be underpinned by a recent stock-taking report produced by the CAEP Technical Assistance Team on “Existing Capacity Development and Mobility Programmes between the EU and Central Asia Countries”. The final version of this report will be published soon on our CAEP website: http://www.caep-project.org/useful-content/studies-and-reports/
Representatives from Central Asia ministries, institutions and other stakeholders have expressed the need for strengthening these manifold exchange and cooperation opportunities in Higher Education to strengthen their educational systems, in particular HE, to make them more international and competitive. This includes as well capacity building activities between EU and CA based HEIs as foreseen in Erasmus+ and the supportive role of the National Erasmus+ Offices and Higher Education Reform Experts (HERE) active in CA countries. Furthermore, the contribution of EU MS to support mobility by offering grants and scholarships to students and academics or to develop joint study programmes is a second pillar of this cooperation. Finally, it has become obvious that also student mobility and HE cooperation at institutional level within the region has taken in some cases some substantial form.
The conference will consist of three days – two conference days focus on the current state of the Erasmus+ programme, recent developments in and good practice from Higher Education in Central Asia countries as well as addressing the linkage between the HE sector and labour market needs. The third and final day offers visits to visit relevant Polish institutions to link the conference presentations, discussions and working groups with practice in Cracow and facilitates networking between Central Asia and EU based universities.
In 2017, CAEP plans to continue the policy dialogue – in line with the Riga Ministerial Joint Communiqué from June 2015 –by addressing Quality Assurance and Accreditation in education as well as to offer a series of peer learning events for educational practitioners in the same sphere.