Workshop 3: Education and culture for a sustainable future for all

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Concept

Education and culture are at the heart of the Sustainable Development Goals and play a crucial role in achieving all of the 17 objectives while ensuring a human-centred, inclusive and equitable development. The integration of cultural and educational factors into sustainable development policies and strategies is crucial to promoting social justice and solidarity, fostering cohesion and fighting social exclusion, poverty and generational and demographic disparities.

Aims and main questions

Through this workshop we hope to answer some of the questions that permeate the current debate:

  • Q1: How can lifelong learning policies and intergenerational learning pave the way for sustainable societies?
  • Q2: How does culture interact with VET? Do cultural differences affect current vocational education and training systems' capacity to respond to the needs of migrant prospective employees? What barriers does culture raise and/or break down in the labour market?
  • Q3: Why is it crucial to include culture and cultural practices in the approaches to a sustainable, equitable and all-embracing future for all?

Q1: Lifelong learning policies and intergenerational learning paving the way for sustainable societies?

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which was adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, promotes 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in order to reduce poverty while simultaneously improving the overall economy in a global partnership. One of these SDGs falls into the category of education, where both lifelong learning policies and intergenerational learning play a substantial role.

This workshop will address the needs of underrepresented inhabitants and citizens by exploring the potential of intergenerational learning. Ongoing intergenerational dialogues are key to the inclusion and growth of all generations, which in turn move forward social equity and justice. In this fast-changing world where values, participation and democracy evolve as other issues such as technology, globalisation and demographics affect our daily life, education and culture are expected to create common ground capable of ensuring dialogue between generations and mutual learning. Today’s young people have different values and skills that older generations struggle to cope with, promoting mutual learning to become more important than ever. It is a crucial asset in building inclusive communities as well as a “culture of caring”.

Starting from the need to address these needs, the workshop seeks to tackle the ways in which intergenerational learning can contribute to the definition of a sustainable future for Europeans.

Q2: How does culture interact with VET? Do cultural differences affect current vocational education and training systems' capacity to respond to the needs of migrant prospective employees? What barriers does culture raise and/or break down in the labour market?

Background: The increasing ageing of the population is creating a serious shortage of workers, which can be partially offset by introducing younger workers from third countries; however, this process requires skills and abilities to be passed down from generation to generation, which a common cultural background can foster and improve. Skill shortages can be better addressed when demand and supply meet, thanks to the widest circulation of information possible. It is our duty to facilitate that circulation with culture and education.

  • Q3: Why it is crucial to include culture and cultural practices in the approaches to a sustainable, equitable and all-embracing future for all?

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted in 2015, provide a common framework and objectives for global, sustainable development, incorporating social, economic and governmental dimensions. Culture is essential for the achievement of all the SDGs and its crucial contribution must be recognised.

It is the belief of Culture Action Europe that, with vision and ambition, the institutions of the European Union can pioneer mainstreaming of culture into the SDGs. The relevance of culture across diverse policy areas builds upon Culture Action Europe’s previous impact review, The Value and Values of Culture, and our recent position paper on SDGs and Culture stresses the need for culture to be included in current and future European action for sustainable development, calling for the creation of a fourth pillar of development for culture as an enabler of sustainable development.

Format

The workshop will take the form of a “reverse café”. In this particular configuration, the group of audience and speakers will split into three different breakout sessions, taking place in separate areas; in each area, an expert will help the audience construct an answer to each of the starting questions, giving a comprehensive perspective and using tools to gather input from the participants.

In a second phase, experts will bring the discussion to a panel in a plenary session, where contributions will build up to the final takeaway. The three breakout sessions will each come up with a set of three or more recommendations for policymakers.

Speakers

Each breakout session will have an expert chairing and steering the discussion as desired.

Proposed speakers have yet to be confirmed:

  • Keynote : tbd or Dr Eli Eisenberg;
  • Address 1: ActTogether - a multi partnership for intergenerational learning, Shanti George;
  • Address 2: Migrants and the holistic approach in education (Dr Eli Eisenberg, ORT, Israel);
  • Address 3: The future we want includes culture: implementing culture within the SDGs.

 

Draft agenda

  • - Introduction EVBB-LLLP-CAE representatives and keynote speaker
  • - Break-out sessions
  • - Plenary → the three speakers report back
  •  EESC representative: The structures, mechanisms and funding available to support such an objective
  • - Votes
    • Word cloud on discussion topics
    • Recommendations

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Education and culture for a sustainable future for all