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Education, Youth and Culture

The Education, Youth and Culture Council brings together two or three times a year the ministers responsible for education, culture and communication, and youth issues, in three separate configurations.

The quality of life for the citizens of the European Union is determined by the wealth and diversity of cultures, education and policies specifically aimed at young people. To this end, the European Union has set itself the task of:

  • contributing to the development of quality education;
  • implementing a lifelong vocational training policy ;
  • introducing measures to help Member States' cultures flourish;
  • promoting Europe's common cultural heritage.

While fully respecting the responsibility of the Member States for organising education and defining the content of teaching and vocational training systems, as well as their cultural diversity, the Education, Youth and Culture Council aims to:

  • provide a framework for cooperation between the Member States, based on the exchange of information and experience on matters of shared interest;
  • use legislation in select areas, such as in the mutual recognition of diplomas, aimed at developing a standardised procedure which facilitates the mobility of young people and foster cultural and academic interchange. In the audiovisual field, it aims to create a common television broadcasting market and encourage the development of the programming industry.

The European Union has introduced an integrated Lifelong Learning Programme (2007-2013) aimed at offering opportunities for exchanges and mobility to young people. The Lifelong Learning Programme encompasses the Erasmus, Leonardo da Vinci, Comenius and Grundvig student exchange programmes. Other initiatives include the Culture 2007 and Media 2007 programmes which aim to preserve and promote Europe's cultural and linguistic diversity as well as its film and audiovisual heritage

These programmes are aimed in particular at:

  • contributing to the development of language learning and diffusion to develop the European dimension in education and training;
  • improving the knowledge and dissemination of the culture and history of the European peoples and safeguarding cultural heritage of European significance;
  • promoting cooperation between education and training establishments,
  • encouraging cooperation between education establishments and businesses, particularly with regard to training;
  • improving initial and continuing vocational training with a view to facilitating the integration of citizens into the employment market, their adaptation to industrial change and their possible retraining;
  • stimulating artistic and literary creation, as well as the audiovisual sector.

Apart from cultural affairs, where it acts unanimously, the Education, Youth and Culture Council acts by qualified majority, in co-decision with the European Parliament.


Documents "Education, Youth and Culture"

  • Updated: 25.06.2008
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