Capacity Building for a Greener world
The aim: why this e-Booth?
Since the official launch of the Programme in the year 2014, Erasmus+ has included “Environment and climate change” as one of the possible topics that could be addressed by project proposals.
Since then, Higher Education Institutions have played an essential role in addressing the issue of environmental sustainability by raising awareness, instilling the key competences needed for changing personal behaviours, and empowering people to take action in their respective communities.
This e-Booth offers a space to foster networking and exchange of information with key actors in the implementation of the projects and other stakeholders. Within the context of an online meeting, successful on-going or finalized projects and policy makers will have the opportunity to share ideas and illustrate their “Capacity Building for a Greener World”.
A dedicated space where best practices and success stories are proposed through visual, result-oriented dissemination materials such as, videos related to project results, testimonials of students or alumni that took part in projects, apprenticeship/placements, as well as any media coverage and interviews.
Here you can find the main policy topics and the key messages that we want to convey through our e-booths on how Capacity Building in Erasmus + plays a role in “Environment and climate change”. Particular attention is given to Higher Education: how it can be a key driver for greener transitions, and its major role to play in boosting innovation and growth.
Capacity Building projects implemented under this topic aim at developing competences in various sustainability-related sectors, and developing green sectorial skills strategies and methodologies, as well as future-oriented curricula, to better meet the needs of individuals. Capacity Building also supports the testing of innovative practices to prepare learners, staff and youth workers to become true factors of change (e.g. save resources, reduce energy use and waste, compensate carbon footprint emissions, opt for sustainable food and mobility choices, etc.). The upskilling of teachers in environmental sustainability by specialised trainings and best practice sharing is crucial for the successful development of this competence for all citizens.
Thanks to the implementation of projects, Capacity Building actively contributes to the transition to a circular and greener economy by bringing changes to qualifications and national education and training curricula, in order to meet emerging professional needs for green skills and sustainable development.
Problems such as climate change and environmental degradation greatly affect the global economy, the labour market, and employment in areas such as damages to business assets and infrastructure, occupational health and safety, and labour productivity. Measures or actions to fight these problems open the door to a "green transition".
Nevertheless, the process towards a green transition will not only change the characteristics of employment, but it will also create new markets, new activities, and transform businesses, which will require to invest in the training and reskilling of the workforce, to reduce the risk of increased unemployment, poverty, inequality and to respond to the new labour market needs.
To achieve adequate planning and policy management for a more environmentally friendly model, investments in new technologies, products, services, and infrastructure are required.
To this end, selected projects under Capacity Building in the field of Higher education are playing a key driver for green and digital transitions and have a major role to play in boosting innovation and growth. The quality and labour market relevance of tertiary education, and in particular its capacity to adapt to rapidly changing labour market needs, is becoming a key success factor in a global competition for talent.
The 2018 Council Recommendation on Key Competences for Lifelong Learning, invites the Member States to spread the ambitions of the Sustainable Development Goals across education, training and learning, “including by fostering the acquisition of knowledge about limiting the multifaceted nature of climate change and using natural resources in a sustainable way”. The Recommendation also requests the Commission to “support initiatives to further develop and promote education for sustainable development.”
The EU supports Member States in their efforts to develop key competences through the provision of policy guidelines and common reference tools, cooperation, and the facilitation of peer learning, as well as financial incentives through Erasmus+ and other EU funding programmes.
Building on prior work and evidence from Member States and UNESCO work, the Commission plans to put forward a worldwide policy approach on how to develop education for environmental sustainability, including biodiversity education. The aim is to increase awareness, understanding, and action concerning environmental challenges set out good practices, and provide guidelines for policy development in the area. For example, the promotion of multidisciplinary pedagogies and the teaching of science in environmental, socio-economic and cultural contexts is an approach that has shown positive outcomes.
The European Pillar of Social Rights, the European Education Area and its governance framework, and the new Digital Education Action Plan represent the policy framework for education and training at EU level. Moreover, it is worth mentioning here that the European Green Deal –the EU’s new growth strategy - explicitly calls for activating education and training to support the transition towards a greener Europe.
Furthermore, the European Green Deal asks education and training systems to play a key role in this green transition by:
- Preparing a European competence framework on climate change and sustainable development;
- Renovating schools by using the money saved through building efficiency to support quality education;
- Supporting the re-skilling and upskilling of Europe’s workforce to enhance employability in the green economy, and reap the benefits of the ecological transition.
At international level, the Sustainable Development Goal 4 “Quality education” calls for action to ensure inclusive and equitable good quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.
To this end, as announced in the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, in 2021 the Commission will propose a Council Recommendation to encourage cooperation in education for environmental sustainability, which will provide guidance for schools, higher education institutions, and teachers on how to cooperate and exchange good practices on environmental sustainability education, including biodiversity learning and teaching.
A very last upcoming new initiative is: Education for Climate Coalition
The Coalition will mobilise the education and training community to work towards achieving climate neutrality. It will seek to do so by centralising, upscaling, supporting and promoting bottom-up, co-created sustainability actions involving pupils, students, teachers, education institutions, and stakeholders. The work of the Coalition will be steered by a European Union (EU) Secretariat in collaboration with national coalitions, schools, universities, and other education stakeholders. A dedicated online platform will be created to centralise the Coalition’s efforts in the form of pledges for concrete actions made by individuals and collective actors at the local, regional and national levels.
Have a look at some of the existing initiatives currently ongoing under the Capacity Building in the field of Environment and climate change.
MONTUS develops research on cloud computing in environmental sciences, and promotes its education via the creation of a dedicated master in the countries of South East Asian partners. Schematically, cloud computing consists of pooling hardware and software resources via the Internet. It reduces the costs of processing and storing information in a simplified environment accessible to all. It is also an operational response to the generalized problems of Big Data – also a major issue of Computer Science, today.
TORUS and MONTUS THE FUNDAMENTALS, PDF
The CITYLAB project aims to stimulate innovation in teaching in higher education through problem-based learning Centres in the Caribbean, and make higher education institutes and students better prepared to deal with contemporary urban problems and challenges.
GREENCAP - (2020-2022)
The GREENCAP project offers support to Higher Education Institutions in Cambodia to reform their curriculum for green growth by promoting closer relations between universities and industry, so that these institutions can produce skilled labourers according to the demands of Cambodian stakeholders.
Best practices and success stories
Here we share some example of best practices and success stories from Capacity Building in Environment and climate change. During our LIVE EVENT on Thursday, you will have the opportunity to meet them. So, have a look at them!
MADEEHI: Coopération et innovation pédagogique : Eau-Énergie-Habitat à Madagascar (2016-2019)
The project reinforces capacities in Master’s programs in energy control, water, housing environment and new technologies, in accordance with the socio-cultural context, in order to assure a sustainable and reasoned local development, based on entrepreneurial spirit and the benefits of the natural resources of Madagascar.
MADEEHI Poster, PDF
The aim of the WaterH project is to develop improved learning and teaching tools, methodologies, and pedagogical approaches by using best practices. As a result, it contributed to the development of skills in multiple uses of resources, and in long-term planning for multiple benefits, in such a way that project partners have harmonised teaching and pedagogical approaches in water related graduate education.
The severity of natural disasters significantly affects the environment causing extensive damage. The Western Balkan (WB) countries are exposed to a variety of natural hazards including floods, droughts, forest fires, earthquakes and landslides. Therefore, it is necessary to constantly strengthen the personnel competencies, as well as technical innovations and equipment, infrastructure, information, and technological systems. The main objective of the NatRisk project is to educate experts in Natural Disasters Risk Management (NDRM) in WB partner countries (Serbia, Kosovo and Bosnia and Herzegovina), through the development and implementation of new Masters curricula in the field of NDRM, and the development of educational trainings for the public sector and citizens.
LMPT project aim is the modernization of educational programs in sustainable tourism in China, Vietnam, and Kyrgyzstan. In each partner country, the aim is to reduce skill gaps in intermediate (production assistant, people responsible of organisations) and top levels (sustainable development manager, project manager), by improving the employability of students and perfecting corporate executives. The project also created professional Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in sustainable tourism development accessible in distance learning format, and a long-life training program.
..And for more project’s initiatives, to network and to be inspired, visit the Erasmus + Projects results platform!