The EU has set up joint study programmes with industrialised countries, particularly in North America and the Asia-Pacific region, that provide financial support for student mobility. Such co-operation enhances the quality of higher education and vocational training for both partners and promotes greater intercultural understanding.
EU policies aim to reform higher education systems, making them more flexible, coherent and responsive to the needs of society. Only by doing this can the EU continue to promote standards of international relevance in education and training.
International dialogue, comparison and competition help drive improvements in the quality of education systems. Collaborating with the world’s most developed countries and testing educational approaches and standards against each other contribute to this process.
The Commission first made formal agreements with the US and Canada on co-operation in higher education and vocational training in 1995. These were renewed in 2006.
In addition, several initiatives operate with other industrialised countries, including Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea.
The overall aims are to:
The main activities are: