Transnational cooperation in the ESF helps develop better and more effective employment and social policies and improve the delivery of reforms, essentially by enabling people to learn from experiences and good practice in other countries.
Transnational cooperation is implemented in three different ways:
The Common Framework’s primary focus is to bring together project promoters from different Member States and facilitate cooperation between them within transnational projects. It also serves as a forum for discussing issues relevant to the ESF between stakeholders in the different countries.
A set of common themes has been agreed to guide work within the Common framework:
|Common theme||Possible sub-themes|
|Employment||Employability and labour integration; Labour mobility; Employment services – improvement of and access to; Work-life balance; Adaptability; Work organisation; Green jobs; Active ageing|
|Inclusion||Active inclusion in the labour market; Access to services (e.g. transport, health, welfare, housing, etc.); Combating discrimination, such as Roma; Fighting against poverty; Community-led local development|
|Youth employment||NEETs; Recent graduates; Mobility; Apprenticeships; Traineeships|
|Learning and skills||Early school leaving; Vocational education and training; Accreditation (of prior learning); Lifelong learning; Transitions within and between school and work|
|Social economy||Social entrepreneurship (including outreach, start-up support, coaching/mentoring, social franchising); Financial instruments to support social entrepreneurship (incl. microfinance); Cooperatives; Pathways of integration from social economy to the normal economic circuit|
|Governance and public administration||Judiciary reform; E-government; Policy and legislative processes; Human resources management; Results-based management; Monitoring and evaluation|
|Simplification||Simplified costs options; Financial instruments; Joint action plans|
For each of these themes the Commission is setting up a Thematic Network including representatives from the bodies managing the ESF Operational Programmes, policy experts, stakeholders, academics and social partners.
These Thematic Networks continue the activities of the Learning Networks established in the 2007-2013 period.
Member States are encouraged to ensure that the knowledge created within the Thematic Networks is disseminated through new or existing national networks.
These constitute the core of the common framework, and aim to create synergies and effective partnerships among the Member States around the common themes. The
se calls will enable projects in each participating country to apply for ESF support for work that includes a transnational component.
Two coordinated calls for proposals will be launched over the programming period (in 2016 and 2018), each covering most of the common themes. These coordinated calls will comprise individual national and/or regional level calls launched by Managing Authorities (or Intermediate Bodies on behalf of MAs) participating in the common framework during an agreed window, following a timetable and terms of reference agreed at EU level.
A set of tools is being put in place in 2015-2016 to support transnational cooperation in the ESF, whether within the common framework or more broadly:
A one-stop shop for anyone interested in transnational cooperationin the ESF will support activity within the flexible approach as well as the Common Framework. It will provide news on the work of the Thematic Networks and collaborative fora.
An EU-wide online partner search database will enable project promoters to share project ideas and find partners in other countries for concrete collaboration.
A quarterly newsletter will be published, as well as periodic technical dossiers and a compendium of good practices which will help to improve the impact of ESF projects.
An annual event will bring together practitioners will be held to encourage mutual learning and to disseminate results among stakeholders.
A panel of stakeholders, primarily European-level NGOs and social partners, will be convened to discuss issues that arise in the implementation of the ESF.
An information service is available for all transnational cooperation stakeholders, which can include Managing Authorities, NGOs, academia etc.:
+32 2 736 1890
ESF Transnational Platform, AEIDL, Chaussée St-Pierre 260, B-1040 Brussels