Erasmus+ is the EU's programme to support education, training, youth and sport in Europe. Its budget of €14.7 billion will provide opportunities for over 4 million Europeans to study, train, gain experience, and volunteer abroad.
Set to last until 2020, Erasmus+ doesn't just have opportunities for students. Merging seven prior programmes, it has opportunities for a wide variety of individuals and organisations.
Detailed information on these opportunities, including eligibility criteria, is available in the Erasmus+ Programme Guide. An indicative funding guide for some centralised opportunities is also available.
The aim of Erasmus+ is to contribute to the Europe 2020 strategy for growth, jobs, social equity and inclusion, as well as the aims of ET2020, the EU's strategic framework for education and training. Erasmus+ also aims to promote the sustainable development of its partners in the field of higher education, and contribute to achieving the objectives of the EU Youth Strategy.
Specific issues tackled by the programme include:
- Reducing unemployment, especially among young people
- Promoting adult learning, especially for new skills and skills required by the labour market
- Encouraging young people to take part in European democracy
- Supporting innovation, cooperation and reform
- Reducing early school leaving
- Promoting cooperation and mobility with the EU's partner countries.
See also: About the Erasmus+ programme
Capacity-building projects in the field of higher education are transnational cooperation projects, based on multilateral partnerships, primarily between higher education institutions from Programme and eligible Partner Countries.
The aim of these projects is to support eligible Partner Countries to:
- modernise, internationalise and increase access to higher education
- address the challenges facing their higher education institutions and systems
- increase cooperation with the EU
- voluntarily converge with EU development in higher education, and
- promote people to people contacts, intercultural awareness, and understanding.
This is carried out in the context of two key policy documents and the policy defined by four complementary financing instruments (Increasing the Impact of EU Development Policy: An Agenda for Change, European Higher Education in the World):
- the European Neighbourhood Instrument
- the Development Cooperation Instrument
- the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance, and
- the European Development Fund.
On 30 May, the Commission adopted its proposal for the next Erasmus programme, with a doubling of the budget to 30 billion euros for the period 2021-2027.
Building on the success of Erasmus+, the next programme will provide learning and mobility opportunities to 12 million people, in comparison to 4 million people in the current programme. Its focus on “evolution, not revolution” means that the 'Erasmus' programme will continue to cover schools, vocational education and training, higher education and adult learning - youth and sport, but in a more streamlined manner. Building on the mid-term evaluation and stakeholder consultations, the next programme will be substantially strengthened, extended and more inclusive. It will further promote activities which foster knowledge and awareness of the EU, opportunities in forward-looking knowledge fields e.g. climate change, robotics etc. and better outreach and inclusion of people with fewer opportunities.
The international dimension of the programme will also be boosted. Investing in people, their skills, and their knowledge will help respond to global challenges, maintain social fairness and drive Europe’s competitiveness.