Annual Lifelong Learning Conference 2015 – Why this conference?
Due to rapid economic, social and technological changes, the traditional school-work-retirement pattern is no longer the norm. Nowadays most individuals undergo several transitions in their lives, going back from work to education, working and studying simultaneously or volunteering, in their home country and/or abroad. These changes have also broadened the offer and scope of learning opportunities, for instance, in the field of digital technologies.
Together with the OECD and UNESCO, the EU has been the key source for education policy makers and practitioners to promote the concept of lifelong learning as an integrated vision of education, which appears to be crucial in an increasingly complex and knowledge-intensive society. Progress in lifelong learning has been made in a number of key areas. For instance, explicit lifelong learning strategies have been developed by a large number of EU countries, including reforms or developments of national qualification frameworks (NQF) and validation systems. Major gaps still exist. Implementation of lifelong learning remains uneven and strong political commitment is often lacking . This is particularly evident in times of economic and social crisis when budgetary constraints take over necessary long-term investment in human capital.