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Theme 1.03 Education and lifelong learning

1. Description

These statistics include the production of statistical information on education and lifelong learning via specific data sources on education and training systems, vocational training in enterprises and adult learning. This information is complemented with relevant information coming from other ESS sources which are not specific for education covering areas like human capital, education and social inclusion or transition from school to working life.

Indicators produced are used in benchmarking exercises like the structural indicators, the follow-up of the report on the concrete future objectives of the education and training systems (Education and Training 2010), the European Employment Strategy, benchmarking the European Research Area, the social agenda and sustainable development.
Co-operation within the Commission is established with DG EAC, DG EMPL, DG RTD and JRC (CRELL; Centre for Research on Education and Lifelong Learning). Co-operation with other international organisations (UNESCO Institute for Statistics, OECD, ILO), with specialised EU agencies - European Training Foundation (ETF), CEDEFOP - as well as with the Eurydice information network established by DG EAC is developed and established.

2. Work Programme for 2009

2.1 Key priorities 2009

The main priorities are the improvement of the production processes and the quality of data - including relevance, comparability, coherence, cost-effectiveness and timeliness of statistics and indicators - disseminated on education, training and lifelong learning. The EP and Council Regulation on education and lifelong learning statistics contributes to this objective and its implementing follow-up should be ensured. Data from the surveys on education and training from enterprises (Continuing Vocational Training Survey, CVTS, 3rd wave) as well as the Adult Education Survey (pilot) will be finalised and the detailed analysis and publication should be finalised during 2009. Work on CVTS4 as well as the next Adult Education Survey (AES under study for inclusion in new EHS project, CVTS4 to be implemented in 2011) will start in 2009, based on an evaluation of their last implementation. A Commission Regulation on the AES is foreseen. The improvement of data and metadata disseminated through the NewCronos database remains a permanent objective. A special report will be produced in order to answer the demand from the ministerial conference on the follow up of the Bologna process, on its social dimension. The Commission Communication (COM(2007) 61 final) on a coherent framework of indicators and benchmarks for monitoring progress towards the Lisbon objectives in education and training is an input for consolidating Eurostat sources on education statistics (Council conclusion of May 2007). For that, a major task will be the continued improvement of the statistical infrastructure needed for providing comparable education and training data used in benchmarking processes. Co-operation with international organisations and with EU specialised agencies will be rationalised and improved in areas of common interest.

2.2 Objectives 2009

2.2.1.Ongoing work

  • By Spring, launch the 2009 education data collection tools both for the joint UOE (UNESCO-OECD-Eurostat) part and for the EU specific part to take into account evolution of user needs and data collection methods;
  • By early Spring, complete the updating of NewCronos education domain with the 2008 data collections;
  • Over the year, follow up the probable adoption of the Commission Regulation on statistics on education and trainings systems act covering the 'UOE' data collection);
  • In the beginning of the year, follow-up the treatment and dissemination of the CVTS data. Towards the end of the year, prepare the CVTS4 including a possible simplification of the statistical instrument;
  • Disseminate AES data for all participating countries, in Autumn. Disseminate anonymised data set for research purposes;
  • Continue to consolidate the production process of data coming from the LFS, SILC and SES;
  • Prepare domain specific publications using the different Eurostat sources; mainly in the form of Statistics in Focus and shorter leaflets. Co-operation with DG EAC and Eurydice of publications prepared together;
  • Participate actively in the foreseen revision of the International Standard Classification for Education (ISCED) in co-operation with OECD and UNESCO (ISCED revision under the responsibility of the UNESCO Institute of Statistics);
  • Publish a report on the social dimension of the Bologna process;
  • Assess the quality and comparability of data and draw up recommendations for improvement.

2.2.2.New work

  • Start to prepare the Commission Regulation on the Adult Education Survey;
  • Implement the improvements of the statistical infrastructure, in relation to COM(2007) 61 final and its follow-up (Council conclusions);
  • Start the work on the establishment of a European University data collection (feasibility study).

2.3. Actions that will simplify work or reduce the burden on Member States and/or respondents


  • Objective 103: The Commission regulation covering the 'UOE' data collection will focus on identified needs at EU and Commission level and hence the core of the data collection will be focused on and consolidated in the process;
  • Objective 201: The foreseen Commission regulation covering the Adult Education Survey will focus on identified needs at EU and Commission level and hence the core of the data collection will be focused on and consolidated in the process;
  • UOE data collection, improvement of data transmission tools.

Expected results:

  • A more efficient data collection having in mind that the UOE data collection sources are mainly administrative records and it is already seen as a very cost effective instrument;
  • A more efficient data collection which would be integrated in the system of social statistics as provided by Eurostat;
  • SDMX system to be implemented.

3. Statistical work carried out by other DGs

COM(2007) 61 and the following Council conclusions include a list of 16 indicators of which 10 would come from the Eruopean Statistical System (ESS). Some of the remaining indicators will create new demands for surveys outside the ESS. These new surveys relate to civic skills, adult skills, teacher training, learning-to-learn skills and language skills. Some of these are conducted in co-operation between the Commission and principally the OECD (adult skills, teacher training); others are being set up by the Commission (DG EAC) like for example the language skills survey (see COM(2007)184.

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