Recommendation CM/Rec(2011)4
of the Committee of Ministers to member states
on education for global interdependence and solidarity

(Adopted by the Committee of Ministers on 5 May 2011
at the 1113th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies
)

The Committee of Ministers, under the terms of Article 15.b of the Statute of the Council of Europe,

Considering that the aim of the Council of Europe is to achieve greater unity between its members for the purpose of safeguarding and realising the ideals and principles which are their common heritage – human rights, the rule of law and pluralistic democracy − and in view of the Council of Europe’s willingness to remain open to co-operation with Europe’s neighbouring regions and the rest of the world, in particular through the European Centre for Global Interdependence and Solidarity (“North-South Centre”);

Recalling that, by providing a framework for European co-operation designed to heighten public awareness of global interdependence issues and to promote policies of solidarity complying with the Council of Europe’s aims and principles, the establishment of the North-South Centre in 1989 was an expression of its founding states’ determination and visionary spirit, as reflected in the Centre’s mission statement to improve education and information on global interdependence and solidarity;

Bearing in mind the Europe-wide Global Education Congress bringing together parliamentarians, governments, local and regional authorities and civil society organisations from the member states of the Council of Europe (Maastricht, 15-17 November 2002), and its declaration to contribute to “international, regional and national commitments to increase and improve support for global education, as education that supports peoples’ search for knowledge about the realities of their world, and engage them in critical global democratic citizenship towards greater justice, sustainability, equity and human rights for all”;

Recalling the commitment of the United Nations member states under the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 57/254 (2002), to put in place a United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (DESD), spanning from 2005 to 2014, particularly as concerns the pursuit of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals;

Having regard to the Declaration and Action Plan adopted at the Third Summit of the Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe (Warsaw, 16-17 May 2005) and the Faro Declaration on the Council of Europe’s strategy for developing intercultural dialogue (Faro, 27-28 October 2005), which underlines the importance of “dialogue between Europe and the rest of the world, in giving appropriate responses to the major challenges of our multicultural societies”;

Recalling the White Paper on Intercultural Dialogue “Living Together as Equals in Dignity”, launched by the Committee of Ministers on 7 May 2008, stating that “education for democratic citizenship involves, inter alia, […] education on the global context of societies”;

Noting the development of strengthened policy frameworks for education for global interdependence and solidarity in Europe, both at national and at European level, through various multi-stakeholder initiatives mainly in the context of European Union co-operation initiatives and acknowledging the contributions of the North-South Centre in this regard;

Having regard to Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)7 of the Committee of Ministers to member states on the Council of Europe Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education, adopted on 11 May 2010;

Recognising that education for global interdependence and solidarity is complimentary to the above-mentioned recommendation to the extent that it addresses related areas, such as intercultural education, equality education, education for sustainable development, peace education and development education, against the backdrop of common concerns about the sustainability of democratic societies, and with a view to promoting peace and democratic values, thereby acknowledging the growing need for global policies for sustainable development and human solidarity;

Recalling that education for global interdependence and solidarity, as promoted by the North-South Centre, is based on the perennial values of the Council of Europe, with a view to building a culture of global solidarity and to promoting equality and respect for human dignity and intercultural dialogue;

Considering that:

- education for global interdependence and solidarity is an important contributing factor to the creation of just societies in which all individuals are provided with access to knowledge, are empowered to develop the ability to understand, participate in and interact critically with their local and global surroundings, and to face the challenges of a changing society as responsible citizens of an increasingly interdependent world;

- an increasingly global world requires a global aptitude, allowing for educational systems to critically consider persisting global and local poverty and inequality, thereby acknowledging that global interdependence and solidarity call for an educational approach that is based on the universality of human rights,

Recommends that the governments of member states, in the framework of the implementation of the Council of Europe Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education:1

- allow education for global interdependence and solidarity to play a more prominent role in the context of educational policy making and reforms and, as a result, support policies and develop relevant strategies, taking into account and respecting the specificity of national conditions and contexts;

- enhance the promotion of education for global interdependence and solidarity both in formal education and non-formal education, as a lifelong and all-encompassing learning experience;

- support knowledge and evidence-based policy making in education for global interdependence and solidarity through international co-operation and co-ordination at both pan-European and global levels by all appropriate means;

- co-operate with the North-South Centre and other relevant bodies in the field in the follow-up of this recommendation;2

- bring this recommendation to the attention of the relevant authorities and institutions, public and private, in particular the public authorities responsible for framing and implementing education policies at national, regional and local level, as well as non-governmental organisations;

Calls on the Secretary General of the Council of Europe to bring this recommendation to the attention of the non-member states of the Council of Europe which are either Parties to the 1954 European Cultural Convention (ETS No. 18) or members of the North-South Centre.

1 Adopted in the framework of Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)7 on 11 May 2010.

2 In line with the “Global Education Guidelines”, published by the North-South Centre in 2008.



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