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European area of lifelong learning

European area of lifelong learning

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about European area of lifelong learning

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Lifelong learning

European area of lifelong learning

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission of 21 November 2001 on making a European area of lifelong learning a reality [COM(2001) 678 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

Europe’s future depends on the extent to which its citizens can face economic and social challenges. A European area of lifelong learning will empower citizens to move freely between learning settings, jobs, regions and countries in pursuit of learning. Hence, lifelong learning focuses on learning from pre-school education until after retirement (“from the cradle to the grave”) and covers all forms of education (formal, informal or non-formal).

In the context of the strategic objective set out by the Lisbon European Council in March 2000, to enable the European Union (EU) to become the most competitive and dynamic knowledge economy in the world, the guiding principle of the integrated policy cooperation framework “Education and Training 2010” is lifelong learning, in synergy with the relevant elements of youth, employment, social inclusion and research policies. The new integrated guidelines adopted in 2005 in connection with the Lisbon Strategy also include the objective of lifelong learning.

The central role of the learner, the importance of equal opportunities, quality and relevance of learning possibilities must be at the centre of the strategies to make lifelong learning a reality in Europe.

Components of a lifelong learning strategy

Successive European Councils after Feira in 2000 have emphasised the need to implement coherent and comprehensive strategies. The Member States have undertaken to have such strategies in place by 2006.

This communication sets out the building blocks of such strategies, in order to assist Member States and the other actors concerned. The transformation of traditional systems is the first step towards allowing everyone access to lifelong learning. Other building blocks have been identified in the light of the need to:

  • develop partnerships at all levels of public administration (national, regional and local), as well as between suppliers of educational services (schools, universities, etc.) and civil society in the broad sense (businesses, social partners, local associations, etc.);
  • identify the needs of the learner and labour market in the context of the knowledge society (including for example the new information technologies);
  • identify adequate resources by encouraging an increase in public and private investment and new investment models;
  • make learning more accessible, notably by multiplying local learning centres at the workplace and by facilitating learning on the job. Specific efforts are needed for persons who are disadvantaged, including the disabled, minorities and the rural community;
  • create a learning culture to motivate (potential) learners, to increase levels of participation and to demonstrate the need for learning at all ages;
  • put in place evaluation and quality control mechanisms. By the beginning of 2003, the Commission was to launch a prize for firms that invest in lifelong learning, in order to award and draw attention to good practices in this area.

Priorities for action of a lifelong learning strategy

As emphasised in the communication, in order to achieve a European area of lifelong learning, it is essential to:

  • value learning. This means valuing formal diplomas and certificates, as well as non-formal and informal learning, so that all forms of learning can be recognised. This includes improving the transparency and coherence of national learning systems, preparing transnational mechanisms for accumulating qualifications for 2003, defining a common system for presenting qualifications (inspired by the European curriculum vitae) by the end of 2002 and creating diplomas and certificates that pertain to European training on a voluntary basis;
  • strengthen information, guidance and counselling services at European level. In 2002, the Commission was to launch an Internet portal on learning opportunities at European level and a European guidance forum to promote exchanges of information;
  • invest more time in learning. The Commission is inviting the European Investment Bank to support learning, preferably by creating local training centres, requesting the European investment fund to support risk capital in this area, suggesting that Member States make greater use of the European Social Fund, and committing itself to presenting a survey of tax incentives in the Member States;
  • bring learning opportunities closer to learners. This will be possible by developing local knowledge acquisition centres and by encouraging learning on the job;
  • provide everybody with basic skills;
  • support research into innovative pedagogy for teachers, instructors and mediators, while taking account of the growing role of information and communication technologies.

The Commission, European Parliament and other European institutions, Member States, EEA countries (European Economic Area), candidate countries, social partners, NGOs (non-governmental organisations) and international organisations are called upon to collaborate with a view to driving forward lifelong learning. To this end, the Commission communication proposes the creation of a database of good practices, information and experience in this area, as well as the establishment of a high level group consisting of representatives of the ministries responsible for lifelong learning, with a view to following up coordination between decision-making levels (Community, national, regional and local).

Implementation will be ensured by programmes, instruments, networks and a limited number of indicators.

A contribution on the subject was presented to the Barcelona Council in March 2002. In 2003, the Commission produced a report on progress in Member States and at Community level in the field of lifelong learning. It was then decided that the achievements to date would be followed up in the two-yearly report on implementation of the “Education and Training 2010” programme.

Background

The Feira European Council in June 2000 asked the Commission and Member States to identify a coherent strategy to enable all Europeans to access lifelong learning. The Memorandum on lifelong learning launched a wide-ranging consultation at European level. This communication is the result of this debate, which in 2000/2001 involved approximately 12 000 persons in Member States, EEA countries, candidate countries, Community institutions, social partners’ organisations and NGOs.

Related Acts

of the Council and of the Representatives of the Governments of the Member States, meeting within the Council of 21 November 2008 on better integrating lifelong guidance into lifelong learning strategies [Official Journal C 319 of 13.12.2008].
This resolution emphasises the need to strengthen the implementation of an active guidance policy within the framework of national lifelong learning strategies. It sets out four priority areas for lifelong guidance, which aim to enhance:

  • the acquisition of empowering career management skills;
  • access to guidance services, in particular for people from disadvantaged groups;
  • the quality of guidance services;
  • coordination and cooperation among all relevant stakeholders at all possible levels.

With a view to improving the provision of lifelong guidance, exchanges of information on national policies and practices must be organised, along with proper monitoring and evaluation of their implementation. In addition, cooperation must be further encouraged at national, European and international levels. To that end, the Lifelong Learning Programme, the European Structural Funds, the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop) and the European Training Foundation may be employed.

of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 on [Official Journal L 394 of 30.12.2006].

This recommendation puts forward a reference tool identifying the key competences for lifelong learning.

Decision No 1720/2006/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 November 2006 establishing an action programme in the field of lifelong learning [Official Journal L 327 of 24.11.2006].

of 27 June 2002 on lifelong learning [Official Journal C 163 of 9.7.2002].

The Council welcomes the Commission communication of November 2001 on “Making a European area of lifelong learning a reality”. It also welcomes the fact that this communication established lifelong learning as one of the guiding principles for education and training.

European benchmarks in education and training

European benchmarks in education and training

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about European benchmarks in education and training

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Education training youth sport > Education and training: general framework

European benchmarks in education and training

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission of 20 November 2002 on European benchmarks in education and training: follow-up to the Lisbon European Council [COM(2002) 629 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

Benchmarks

In this communication, the term “benchmark” is used to refer to concrete, measurable targets. These are grouped into six areas:

  • investment in education and training;
  • early school leavers;
  • graduates in mathematics, science and technology;
  • population having completed upper secondary education;
  • key competencies;
  • lifelong learning.

The communication gives a general overview of the results achieved so far in the various Member States and invites the Council to adopt the following European benchmarks:

  • By 2010, all Member States should have at least halved the rate of early school leavers compared with the rate in 2000, to achieve a European Union (EU) average rate of 10% or less.

The trend in the school drop-out rate (i.e. the number of young people aged between 18 and 24 who have only lower secondary education and are not in education or training) is showing some encouraging signs in most Member States, but there is still much to be done over the coming years if this paramount objective is to be achieved by 2010. The EU average in 2002 was 19%, whereas the three best performing EU countries (Sweden, Finland and Austria) show an average of 10.3%. In Portugal the rate is currently 45%, in Spain 29% and in Italy 26%.

  • By 2010, all Member States should have at least halved the level of gender imbalance among graduates in mathematics, science and technology, while securing a significant overall increase in the total number of graduates compared to the year 2000.

Although the European Union produces relatively more graduates in mathematics, science and technology (about 550 000 a year), in comparison with the US (370 000) and Japan (240 000), far fewer go into research careers. Efforts should be made by all education systems to motivate girls in particular to opt for scientific/technological subjects in primary, secondary and higher education. In 2002 the three best performing countries here were Ireland, Portugal and Italy, with 1.6 times as many male as female graduates in mathematics, science and technology, whereas the ratio is 4.7:1 in the Netherlands and 4:1 in Austria.

  • Member States should ensure that, by 2010, the average proportion of 25-64 year olds in the EU with at least upper secondary education is 80% or more.

In most Member States, this rate has shown a steady increase. In the 25-64 age range it has risen from around 50% of the population in the early 1990s, to some 66% in 2000. If this trend continues up to 2010, the average rate in the EU will in fact be around 80%. Currently, the three best performing EU countries (Germany, Denmark and Sweden) show an average of 83%, whereas Portugal has an average of 21%, Spain of 42% and Italy of 46%.

  • By 2010, the percentage of low-achieving 15-year-olds in reading, mathematics and science should be at least halved in each Member State compared with the rate in 2000.

According to the recent PISA survey by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), current attainment levels in reading literacy (15-year-olds) are higher in the USA and Japan than in the EU. These results have prompted wide debate in several Member States because of astonishingly poor results (e.g. in Germany and Luxembourg) or the exceptional performance of Finland, for example. Much therefore clearly remains to be done to improve performance and raise the quality of education and training in Europe overall to the levels of the best in the world (Japan, Finland). Special efforts should be made to at least halve the number of low performers by 2010.

  • By 2010, the EU average level of participation in lifelong learning should be at least 15% of the adult working age population (25-64 age group) and in no country should it be lower than 10%.

Increasing participation in lifelong learning is probably one of the most important challenges facing us all in the field of education and training. The EU average in 2002 was 8.4% (meaning that in any one month, 8.4% people will have participated in education and training activities), as against 19.6% for the 3 best performing Member States (the United Kingdom, Finland and Denmark).

The communication further invites Member States to establish national benchmarks to contribute to achieving the Lisbon objective of “substantial annual increases in per capita investment in human resources”.

Background

In the detailed joint work programme on the objectives for education and training systems (Education and Training 2010), the Commission proposes adopting European benchmarks applicable to education and training systems in areas which are central to the achievement of the strategic goal set by the Lisbon European Council of making Europe “the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy in the world” by 2010.

However, the benchmarks remain indicative and, in accordance with the subsidiarity principle, it is primarily up to the Member States to take action to follow up the conclusions of the Lisbon summit. The Member States therefore have full responsibility for the content and organisation of their education systems.

The communication hopes that the benchmarks proposed will be taken into account in the interim report on the implementation of the detailed work programme on the objectives of education and training systems in Europe, to be submitted by the Commission and the Council to the Spring European Summit in 2004.

Related Acts

Recommendation of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 on key competences for lifelong learning [Official Journal L 394 of 30.12.06].

Council Conclusions of 5 May 2003 on reference levels of European average performance in education and training (Benchmarks) [Official Journal C 134, of 07.06.2003].

The Council, while taking over the European benchmarks in education and training as set out in the Commission Communication of 20 November 2002, fixes the corresponding objectives to be met by 2010, namely to:

  • reduce to no more than 10% the average proportion of young people leaving school early (source: Eurostat, Labour Force Survey);
  • increase by at least 15% the total number of graduates in mathematics, science and technology, while at the same time decreasing the level of gender imbalance (joint source: UNESCO/OECD/Eurostat questionnaire);
  • ensure that at least 85 % of 22-year-olds have completed upper secondary education (source: Eurostat, Labour Force Survey);
  • decrease by at least 20 % compared to the year 2000 the percentage of low-achieving 15-year-olds in reading literacy (source: PISA, OECD);
  • ensure that the at least 12.5 % of the adult working age population (25 to 64 age group) have taken part in lifelong learning (source: Eurostat, Labour Force Survey).

The Council also stresses that the report to be submitted to the Spring European Summit in 2004 should propose a first list of indicators and reference levels of European average performance to be applied for monitoring the progress achieved in the field of education and training towards the Lisbon goals.

Barcelona European Council, 15-16 March 2002, Presidency conclusions [Doc. 02/8 of 16 March 2002 – Not published in the Official Journal].

The European Council welcomes the agreement on the detailed Work Programme for 2010 for education and training systems. The European Council sets the objective of making these educative and training systems a world quality reference by 2010. It invites the Council and the Commission to report to the Spring European Council in 2004.

Copyright in the Knowledge Economy

Copyright in the Knowledge Economy

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Copyright in the Knowledge Economy

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Internal market > Businesses in the internal market > Intellectual property

Copyright in the Knowledge Economy

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission of 19 October 2009 – Copyright in the Knowledge Economy [COM(2009) 532 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

After having analysed the responses generated by the Green Paper on Copyright in the Knowledge Economy, in this Communication the European Commission announces a series of actions to be implemented in the area of intellectual property rights.

What are the positions of the different stakeholders concerned?

The Commission collected 372 responses from the consultation launched by the Green Paper. The analysis of the responses shows radically opposed positions among the following key stakeholders:

  • archives, libraries and universities favour a wider-ranging copyright system, as well as a system of “public interest” exceptions to facilitate access to works;
  • publishers, collecting societies and other right-holders favour the status quo as regards copyright, and prefer contracts which can be adapted to each case and which take account of new technologies.

What is the Commission’s strategy in terms of copyright?

Libraries and archives

Digital copies and electronic dissemination of digitised works represent the two main challenges for libraries and archives. Currently, the digitisation of a library collection is subject to prior approval from right-holders, and the dissemination of works online can only be performed on library premises.

The Commission therefore intends to continue working at European level towards clarifying the legal implications of mass-scale digitisation and providing solutions to the issue of transaction costs for right clearance.

Orphan Works

Orphan works are works that are in copyright but whose right-holders cannot be identified or located. They cannot be exploited because it is impossible to obtain prior permission from the right-holders. Consequently, these works cannot be included in digitisation projects such as the Europeana library. Although the Commission published a Recommendation on the online digitisation of cultural material in 2006, and the Memorandum of Understanding on Orphan Works in 2008, there is no binding legal framework in this field at present.

The Commission plans to launch an impact assessment to explore a variety of approaches to facilitate the digitisation and dissemination of orphan works. Several options are being considered, including a legally binding stand-alone instrument on the clearance and mutual recognition of orphan works (this would be an exception to the provisions of Directive 2001/29/EC), or guidance on cross-border mutual recognition of orphan works.

Teaching and research

Enabled by new information and communication technologies, teaching and research is already widely internationalised. It is therefore important that copyright on books and publications does not hinder the development of these sectors. To this end, different processes in scientific publishing and publishing for literary and artistic aims are being envisaged. Furthermore, the Commission proposes to facilitate the acquisition and use of material for scientific research. Currently, the system is based on licence agreements concluded with publishers. The Commission wishes to consolidate best practice in this field in order to achieve a less fragmented system of usage rights to journals.

Persons with disabilities

The United Nations Convention on the rights of Persons with Disabilities src=”../../../../wel/images/doc_icons/f_pdf_16.gif” Title=”PDF” border=”0″ class=”alIco/”> stipulates that these persons have a fundamental right to enjoy equal access to information products, publications and cultural material in an accessible format. However, persons with disabilities have very limited access to these works for the moment (5 % of books published in Europe are converted into accessible formats). Moreover, the cross-border transfer of this type of material is hampered by the territorial limitation of copyright exceptions under national legislation.

The Commission’s main goal is to encourage publishers to make more works accessible to disabled persons. In this regard, the organisation of a forum bringing together the stakeholders concerned will foster solutions to give persons with disabilities better access to works while ensuring that right-holders are adequately remunerated for the use of their work.

User-created content (UCC)

With the development of Internet applications, users can now produce and share text, videos and pictures or create content, sometimes using copyright-protected material.

However, this phenomenon of content creation by Internet users is still quite recent. For this reason, the Commission intends to analyse the needs of this type of user further with regard to protecting their rights.

Orphan works

Orphan works

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Orphan works

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Internal market > Businesses in the internal market > Intellectual property

Orphan works

Proposal

Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 May 2011 on certain permitted uses of orphan works [COM(2011) 289 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

This Proposal establishes a legal framework concerning orphan works * taking the form of:

  • books, journals, newspapers, magazines or other writings;
  • cinematographic or audiovisual works contained in the collections of film heritage institutions;
  • cinematographic, audio or audiovisual works belonging to the archives of public service broadcasting organisations.

It applies to all works which are protected by the Member States’ legislation in the field of copyright.

This Proposal defines the conditions governing the use of orphan works by:

  • publicly accessible libraries;
  • publicly accessible educational establishments;
  • publicly accessible museums;
  • archives;
  • film heritage institutions;
  • public service broadcasting organisations.

What are the parameters for identifying an orphan work?

The organisations referred to above are required to carry out a diligent search to identify and locate the copyright holder of a work through appropriate sources. These sources are determined by Member States, in consultation with rightholders and users. In particular, they may take the form of:

  • legal deposits;
  • databases of the relevant collecting societies;
  • indexes and catalogues from library holdings and collections;
  • publishers associations in the respective country.

The results of diligent searches must be recorded in a publicly accessible database.

Where the rightholders are not identified or located following a diligent search, a work is considered an orphan work and is recognised as such in all other Member States. The copyright holder nevertheless has the possibility of putting an end to the orphan status at any time.

What types of uses of orphan works are permitted?

Publicly accessible libraries, educational establishments and museums, archives, film heritage institutions and public service broadcasting organisations are obliged to use orphan works for a public interest purpose which includes activities such as:

  • the preservation and restoration of the works contained in their collection;
  • the provision of cultural and educational access to those works.

Organisations are obliged to maintain records of diligent searches carried out and publicly accessible records of their use of orphan works.

However, these organisations may be authorised by Member States to use an orphan work for a purpose other than that of the public interest, provided they remunerate rightholders who put an end to the work’s orphan status.

Context

This Proposal follows the Recommendation on the online digitisation of cultural heritage published in 2006 which invited Member States to equip themselves with legislation on orphan works, an invitation that few of them took up. It is also in line with the objectives of the Digital Agenda for Europe.

Key terms of the Act
  • Orphan work: a work whose rightholder has not been identified or, even if identified, has not been located after a diligent search for the rightholder has been carried out and recorded.

Reference

Proposal Official Journal Procedure

COM(2011) 289

2011/0136/COD


Another Normative about Orphan works

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic

Information society > Data protection copyright and related rights

Orphan works

Proposal

Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 May 2011 on certain permitted uses of orphan works [COM(2011) 289 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

This Proposal establishes a legal framework concerning orphan works
* taking the form of:

  • books, journals, newspapers, magazines or other writings;
  • cinematographic or audiovisual works contained in the collections of film heritage institutions;
  • cinematographic, audio or audiovisual works belonging to the archives of public service broadcasting organisations.

It applies to all works which are protected by the Member States’ legislation in the field of copyright.

This Proposal defines the conditions governing the use of orphan works by:

  • publicly accessible libraries;
  • publicly accessible educational establishments;
  • publicly accessible museums;
  • archives;
  • film heritage institutions;
  • public service broadcasting organisations.

What are the parameters for identifying an orphan work?

The organisations referred to above are required to carry out a diligent search to identify and locate the copyright holder of a work through appropriate sources. These sources are determined by Member States, in consultation with rightholders and users. In particular, they may take the form of:

  • legal deposits;
  • databases of the relevant collecting societies;
  • indexes and catalogues from library holdings and collections;
  • publishers associations in the respective country.

The results of diligent searches must be recorded in a publicly accessible database.

Where the rightholders are not identified or located following a diligent search, a work is considered an orphan work and is recognised as such in all other Member States. The copyright holder nevertheless has the possibility of putting an end to the orphan status at any time.

What types of uses of orphan works are permitted?

Publicly accessible libraries, educational establishments and museums, archives, film heritage institutions and public service broadcasting organisations are obliged to use orphan works for a public interest purpose which includes activities such as:

  • the preservation and restoration of the works contained in their collection;
  • the provision of cultural and educational access to those works.

Organisations are obliged to maintain records of diligent searches carried out and publicly accessible records of their use of orphan works.

However, these organisations may be authorised by Member States to use an orphan work for a purpose other than that of the public interest, provided they remunerate rightholders who put an end to the work’s orphan status.

Context

This Proposal follows the Recommendation on the online digitisation of cultural heritage published in 2006 which invited Member States to equip themselves with legislation on orphan works, an invitation that few of them took up. It is also in line with the objectives of the Digital Agenda for Europe.

Key terms of the Act
  • Orphan work: a work whose rightholder has not been identified or, even if identified, has not been located after a diligent search for the rightholder has been carried out and recorded.

Reference

Proposal Official Journal Procedure

COM(2011) 289

2011/0136/COD