Launch of the Western Balkans Agenda on Innovation, Research, Education, Culture, Youth and Sport

On 6 October, at the EU-Western Balkans Brdo Summit, leaders of the European Union and its Member States, together with Western Balkans leaders launched the ‘Western Balkans Agenda on Innovation, Research, Education, Culture, Youth and Sport’, a comprehensive, long-term cooperation strategy of the European Union and the Western Balkans.

The strategy will promote scientific excellence as well as reform of the region’s education systems, create further opportunities for the youth, and help prevent brain drain.

As reported by EC news, Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth said,

EU cooperation with the Western Balkans offers unparalleled opportunities. The Innovation Agenda for the Western Balkans will open these opportunities to students, researchers, innovators and cultural operators so that they access new markets, become more competitive and build sustainable prosperity. It’s a positive and forward-looking vision for all.

Through increased investments in Research, Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, the Western Balkans Agenda and its proposed actions will contribute to the region’s economic and societal development and cooperation. The EU supports stronger cooperation between the Western Balkans’ stakeholders and EU Member States’ to facilitate the successful implementation of the Agenda deliverables.

The Agenda on Innovation, Research, Education, Culture, Youth and Sport and its Action Plan builds on three main pillars:

  • Political Agenda, Towards a sustainable future by stimulating an economy that supports the recovery and helps to create jobs
    • Reflecting the strategic importance of the region and supporting its integration process through an increased EU engagement;
    • Nurturing knowledge-based societies and evidence-informed policy making;
    • Supporting the association to all the Union programmes covering Research, Innovation, Education, Culture, Youth and Sport;
    • Supporting the implementation of systemic changes and reforms.
  • Thematic Agenda: towards closer alignment with the EU strategic priorities
    • Transforming the national research and innovation eco-systems;
    • Counteracting climate change and supporting the digital transformation;
    • Promoting the implementation of the EU Green Deal in the Western Balkans.
  • Regional Agenda: towards a closer regional economic integration through planned investments in human capital development and digital transformation
    • Enhancing the quality of education and training;
    • Boosting human capital development;
    • Reducing the gender and digital divide;
    • Improving mobility and connectivity;
    • Fostering cultural and regional cooperation.

Related documents and information:

EU-Western Balkans Summit - Brdo Declaration

WB Agenda Factsheet

International cooperation with the Western Balkans

Source: official news item

 

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