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Results of the 9th session of the Committee of the Lisbon Recognition Convention

On November 15, 2022, the 9th session of the Committee of the Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education in the European Region took place in the premises of the Council of Europe (Strasbourg, France), which was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine and the National Center for Academic Mobility ENIC Ukraine.

At the meeting it was heard the report of the Council of Europe Co-Secretariat on the activities of the Steering Committee for Education, which oversees the Council of Europe intergovernmental educational programme. Thus, in the report it was emphasized the role of the Council of Europe as a participant of the European Higher Education Area, its desire to strengthen the potential of education and its contribution to the development of educational missions. The problems of education in times of emergency (pandemic, Russia’s war against Ukraine), the European countries face with and the development of a methodology for responding to such challenges were presented as a separate point of the report.

Also, the report of the UNESCO Co-Secretariat was presented to the participants of the session, in which the work of the organization in the field of higher education was noted. The report marked the results of the World Higher Education Conference, held in a mixed format in May 2022 in Barcelona, the issues related to recognition and mobility as well as the importance of education quality. A special attention was paid to the issue of ratification of the Global Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education. In this regard, it was noted that 18 countries have already ratified the Convention; it was emphasized on the interest in the further involvement of countries, as well as on the work towards interregional cooperation under regional conventions, the creation of reliable mechanisms, such as national agencies for ensuring the quality of education.

As a separate point of the session, the report on the activities of the Bureau of the Lisbon Convention Recognition Committee during 2019–2022 was presented. The report revealed the results of monitoring of implementation of the Convention for the specified period, as well as provided conclusions based on a comparison of the results of previous monitoring. Thus, significant progress was noted in reflecting the requirements of the Convention in the national legislation of the participating countries. Among the issues that were subject to monitoring, the Right to appeal, stipulated by the Article III.5 of the Convention, Information Provision, which is referred to in Articles III.4, VIII.1, IX.2.2, as well as Transnational education, the principles of which are indicated in articles IV.9, VI.5. The appropriate recommendations were provided for each of these issues. There were also considered the issues that are not directly mentioned in the Convention, but the importance of which has been increased due to processes taking place in the world, and in Europe in particular. Such issues are Automatic recognition and Digital solutions. It should be mentioned that the Ukrainian delegation noted that in the conditions of the pandemic, as well as the war in the territory of Ukraine, it already has some experience in the application of Automatic recognition principles and the use of Digital solutions, which it can share. A theme that was performed in all the above-mentioned reports was the implementation of the European Qualifications Passport for Refugees, which would allow refugees and persons equated to them, to integrate into their new society and give them opportunity to work or study, contributing into community they joined.

Also, Jenneke Lokhoff, the president of the ENIC network, performed her presentation, in which she presented the results and work plan of the network, outlined the importance of the functioning of the ENIC centers as a source of information about national education systems, and also noted the need to update the ENIC/NARIC Charter.