Tuesday, December 25, 2018

EURASIAN CHAPTER’s 2018: public diplomacy, trainings and more…



This year was rich of activities, yet difficult for many reasons. Namely, the community portal has not been working since April, due to the change of EMA’s service provider, which made it impossible for us to contact our chapter’s members and access to the mailing lists per countries or per chapter. If you are our chapter’s member and haven’t heard from us for a while, this is the reason why. At present, we can only contact members registered in our Facebook groups (EMA Eurasian chapter and various countries’ groups) and those who have personally been in contact with us. Besides, no EMA/ESAA budget was available this year, so we had to rely exclusively on our local partners to fund all the events. Nevertheless, over 40 events were organised across our chapter in 2018. This is a non-exhaustive overview of the main directions of our activities this year.

Public diplomacy and internationalisation of higher education
In June, four chapter representatives, including three current board members (Natalia Bichurina, President, Armen Grigoryan and Meerim Karybaeva), as well as the former President Kateryna Shalayeva, were invited to participate in a meeting at the European Commission DG EAC headquarters in Brussels. The meeting brought together the representatives of the DG EAC, several EU delegations worldwide and several EMA members. It was aimed at sharing good practice and innovative ideas on Erasmus+ activities and on wider public diplomacy [JB emphasis] initiatives. At the meeting, Natalia Bichurina and Kateryna Shalayeva gave presentations, drawing on Chapter’s successful activities. (For more details click here)
Focus on Central Asia: in preliminary surveys carried out by the Chapter in 2016-2017, Central Asia was identified as one of the key regions where EMA activities are needed. In March, a survey consisting of a series of interviews and discussions held by Natalia Bichurina with current CRs from Central Asian countries (Adiba Muminova, Firdavs Badalov, Madina Karsakpayeva and Meerim Karybaeva) allowed to specify the problematic issues existing in these countries in relation to the higher education. Indeed, students who participated in Erasmus Mundus programmes can provide meaningful comparative feedback, as they are acquainted with various higher education systems, in Central Asia (in their home countries, usually for their first university degree), and in several EU countries (for their Mundus Masters or PhD degrees). This comparison allowed identifying areas for improvement in higher education across Central Asia and in Europe, focusing on the link between education and professional development.

On 14-16 March 2018, Natalia gave two presentations in Warsaw at the Central Asia Education Platform (CAEP) Regional Conference. The Conference was hosted by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of Poland, and brought together representatives from the European Commission, Ministers or high representatives from Ministries of education and Ministries of labour of five Central Asian Countries (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan) and experts (for more details click here). On 8 and 9 October, Meerim Karybaeva represented the Chapter in Istanbul at the Central Asia contact seminar, which brought together HEIs from Erasmus+ Programme Countries and Central Asian countries (for more details click here).
Eastern Partnership countries: as in the previous years, the Eurasian chapter follows the work of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum. This year, Chapter’s representative Sofiia Tretiak was selected by the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum as an official observer for 2018-2019 for the Working group 4 “Contacts between people.” At national level, on September 19, the alumna Olga Novikova participated at the Regional Conference in Dnipro Eurointegration: Power of Opportunities, as a key-note speaker jointly with the Vice-Prime Minister of Ukraine. ...

No comments: