Global education Forum


Closing day of the Forum began with a speech of Žaneta Ozoliņa, Professor University of Latvia, emphasizing different challenges and topicalities of international policy. Ms Ozoliņa encouraged participants to recall a variety of recent events that directly or indirectly affected numerous countries or caused wide resonance in the world, thereby underlining our common interaction and mutual co-addiction. Stressing the responsibility of educators, Ž. Ozoliņa urged teachers to explain the meaning of the information war, and stressed that cyberspace is vulnerable and it is easy to be manipulated. Ž. Ozoliņa stressed that we must learn to distinguish right from wrong and to learn the most important of all skills - the ability to be human.

With a workshop on the role of educators in the multipolar world, Albrecht Ansohn of the German NGO Impuls involved participants in an active discussion process. Participants gained practical methodological insight on how a safe and supportive environment can foster discussions on controversial issues in society. Participants discussed topics of migration, expressed attitudes about refugees in their own countries. Workshop expanded understanding of refugees' situation, gave ideas on how to talk about these issues with different audiences.

A workshop for youth was carried out today by NGO GLEN Latvia representatives, Elīna Dzelzkalēja and Silvija Pūpola. Students were encouraged to face their stereotypes, virtually re-discover different countries, and think about the global distribution of resources in the world. The workshop concluded with two fascinating stories about Elīna’s and Silvija’s participation in GLEN global education learning program and 3 months internships in Georgia and Uganda.

The Forums was concluded by the panel discussion which brought together representatives from different fields - the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Latvian National Commission for UNESCO, Latvian and foreign NGOs, Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences, as well as teachers and youth representatives.


The content of this day was focused on sustainable development. Lecture on topical issues of sustainable development of Latvian and European Union context was read by Kristīne Āboliņa, professor and researcher of the Faculty of Geography and Earth Sciences (University of Latvia). Participants were encouraged to think about the reasons why we do not see the sustainable development actuality in Latvia, the missing link between a good commitment, initiative and a real implementation of the action. What knowledge we need - about the environment, or about ourselves and our daily actions impacting the environment?

This day we were acknowledged by the experience of Czech partner NaZemi, by international network EUROCLIO representatives from the Netherlands, Georgia and Ukraine. Key discussion topics included questions about the role of non-governmental sector and cooperation with schools; how NGOs can share their experiences and help schools to revitalize global topics and active participation into the school agenda.

The day ended with a presentation of a publication ‘’Toolkit for assessing Global Learning’’, which was prepared in the framework of the project ‘’Global dimension in Social Sciences subjects in Formal Education’’. It is a delivery of the project partner organisation Leeds Development Education Centre (United Kingdom). This is a practical instrument to help educators to evaluate global education effectiveness. Publication is prepared in English, but in autumn it will be published also in Latvian.


Today Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences (ViA) has gathered around 60 participants from 10 different countries to jointly discuss the role of education and global competencies in society of 21st century.

Does education require transformation to be called ‘’global’’? Must transformation take place in the education system rather than in our minds?

These are the questions addressed to the participants at the introduction of the Forum by Visvaldis Valtenbergs, Senior Researcher at the Institute of Social, Economic and Humanities Research, an assistant professor of ViA, and Inese Ebele, Director of Global Competencies Administration, lecturer of ViA. Both ViA representatives used various similarities and metaphors to encourage participants to think about an education that truly encourages changes inside each individual, not in the system as a whole. The role of intellectual, emotional, mental and physical balance in strengthening global links was explained.

Particularly important was representation of youth. This day young people were acquainted to each other, presented their homework, which had been diligently prepared despite all final examinations of the school year. Homework topic was based on a practical study of how local meets global in their hometowns.

First day the Forum ended with networking opportunities, with active presentation process, which gave the opportunity for participants to meet in an informal atmosphere and establish new contacts.


This month, Education Development Centre together with partners has worked towards grinding of the substantive issues of the Forum. Negotiations have taken place with the Estonian partner Mondo, which will contribute to a forum’s agenda by online call session with their colleagues in Kenya. Participants will be given a possibility to hear the story of Mondo networks outside the Estonian borders.

Active cooperation continued also with Leeds DEC representatives who are working on preparation of ''Toolkit for Assessing Global Learning’’. This will be a practical instrument to help educators to evaluate global education effectiveness. The publication will be presented at the Forum on 9th of June. Publication will be prepared in English, but in autumn it will be published also in Latvian.


In April, the remote discussions were held among Education Development Centre (EDC) and partner representatives , thus increasingly driving the project towards to its main event- Forum ''Global education-involvement, growth, sustainability'', which will take place from the 8th-10th June Valmiera.

Electronic and Skype communication was held to discuss the role of education in a safe and prosperous EU, bringing international and Latvian representatives to the same page of the topicality of global issues in their countries thus giving a substantial contribution to the preparation Forum's content.

Three organizations, EDC, MONDO and Leeds DEC, have been invited to share their experience about school as a development / global education resource centres and their role in local communities, in improving the quality of life. These stories include each organization's individual experience from the project '' Global dimension in social sciences subjects in formal education'', making listeners aware of project achievements, developed materials and opportunities for cooperation.

Forum will raise participant’s attention on the future trends and opportunities of young people in promoting sustainable development. The key note on sustainability issues will be given by researcher and assistant professor Kristīne Āboliņa from Latvian University Faculty of Geography and Earth Sciences Faculty. Notable experience, examples and methods of will be presented by Czech partner organization NaZemi, as well as an international network EUROCLIO representatives from Georgian NGO ‘’GAHE’’  and from the Ukrainian NGO ‘’NovaDoba’’.

To familiarize participants with the current issues of regional and global political events in the context of global education, participants will be addressed by Žaneta Ozoliņa- professor of Latvian University, Faculty of Social Sciences. Participants will be invited to discuss the future prospects, particularly the awareness, participation and sustainable growth of young people. Discussions will be led by Albrect Ansohn from a German NGO ''ImPuls’’, representatives of the Latvian and Slovak member organisations of the international GLEN network. Forum will also engage pupils from the schools participating in the project' 'The global dimension of the social sciences subjects’’.

Also in April, several discussions took place with Leeds DEC on issuing the ''First Steps in assessing global learning’’ edition, and its preparation and presentation during the forum.

The discussions highlighted the willingness of the partners to share their expertise, personal competences of from various positions- being practitioners, NGOs, educators, university representatives etc.

An essential value to the forum’s framework will be added by the representatives of Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences (ViA). The rector Gatis Krūmiņš, assistant professor and lecturer Visvaldis Valtenbergs, lecturer Inese Ebele will attend the opening of the forum and give the opening speech. Whereas ViA students will help Forum’s participants with various practical matters.


Communication with international partners; substantive and technical issues of the Forum

In March, EDC is actively communicating in with potential partners from 10 countries to agree on the current development issues, and to prepare everything for the in the June’s Forum. We've compiled a list of 10 national representatives. Participation in the forums is approved by the following organizations: Mondo (Estonia), DEC LEEDS (UK), The Independent Association of History Teachers from Georgia (Georgia), NOVA DOBA (Ukraine), GLEN SLOVAKIA (Slovakia), NaZemi (Czech Republic) Kolpig University of Applied Sciences (Lithuania), impuls eV collective leadership institute (Germany), Institute of Global Learning and Development Projects (Slovenia) EUROCLIO (the Netherlands).

These are the organizations and people who have experience in the education and development, as well as the involvement in the professional networks of EU and Eastern Partnership countries. Organizations shows the experience that their representatives have access to and impact on the wider community in their own countries - cooperation with schools, academic education and scientific research institutions, professional associations, NGO sector, the media and the business environment. They have a broad geographical representation and diversity of narrative competence. It would offer substantial opportunities for synergies during the Forum. Besides that, the previous positive experience of cooperation include EDC partners such as Mondo (Estonia), DEC LEEDS (UK) and GLEN Latvia.

Eastern Partnership countries will be represented by teacher organizations of Ukraine "Nova Doba" and Georgia's independent history teachers' association. These are organizations with a large number of members, a wide range of regional representation in their respective countries, with diverse and practical projects implemented and with active participation in international networks. These organizations are selected because of the highest possible impact of the project in the Eastern Partnership countries. Given the current situation in the Eastern Partnership countries, it is particularly important to include educational needs of professionals, experiences and views when designing European recommendations and strategies.

Broad international partnerships will ensure sustainability of the project outcomes. The venue of the Forum is not chosen randomly. Vidzeme University of Applied sciences is a regional academic and professional education and research center. It is characterized by openness to innovation, extensive international experience, inclusive and individualized approach to training, meaningful and professional use of ICT, excellence in knowledge transfer and commercialization. Vidzeme University of Applied demonstrates decentralization of knowledge and innovation along to the balanced regional growth principles.

In 20th of March EDC team made a visit to Valmiera, where together with representatives of Vidzeme University of Applied sciences discussed the proceedings, venues, possible interpretation facilities, cultural program etc.



Project "Global education - engagement, growth, sustainability’’ is launched

As of the 1st of February, the association "Education Development Centre" (EDC) has started the project "Global education - engagement, growth, sustainability’’. The project aims to acquaint the international community with the good practice of integrating global themes in formal education in Latvia, as well as to create a platform for the exchange of experiences between professionals in the field of education of the European Union and the Eastern Partnership countries. The project is included in the agenda of Latvian Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

The project anticipates broad involvement of Latvian society – experts of education and development field, as well as civil society activists and young people - in order to facilitate the exchange of ideas on the EU's current events, for example, the European Year for Development, challenges of the European countries and society towards prosperous and secure future, role of global/development education players in Latvia and it’ s partner countries in shaping the public awareness on the Millennium Development Goals and Sustainable Development Goals.

Gathering together approximately 60 education and development professionals from educational institutions, local governments, public administrations, NGOs, academic and research bodies from more than 10 countries central event of the project - the Global Education Forum will take place on 8 – 10 June, in Valmiera, Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences.

The discussions of the Forum will be summed up in "Recommendations on placing the global education on the School agenda." Recommendations will be publicly available and will be circulated to the members of the Forum and to the major organizations in the sector of global education in Latvia and in Europe.

Global Education Forum is one of the largest sustainability measures that EDC will carry out in the framework of the European Commission’ s project "Global dimension in Social Science subjects in Formal Education", which is a well targeted process of updating global education at local, national and EU level. Forum "Global education - engagement, growth, sustainability'' is financed by the Latvian government. Global Education Forum is one of the projects approved by Society Integration Fund (SIF) in the program ‘’Support for public participation in the implementation of Latvian Presidency of the Council of the European Union’’.



Timeframe of the project: 01.02.2015. - 30.06.2015.

Goal: to boost EU's competitiveness and growth through the promotion of good practice in global education in Latvia, encouragement for cooperation among professionals, and involvement of the society in the debate on the role of education in the future.

Activities: central event of the project - the Global Education Forum, which will take place on 8 – 10 June, in Valmiera, Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences, bringing together approximately 60 education and development professionals from educational institutions, municipalities, government institutions, NGOs, academic and research bodies from more than 10 countries.

Participants: 60 participants of the forum will come from Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Georgia, Germany, Slovakia, Slovenia, the Unite Kingdom and Ukraine. Participants will represent schools, local and national education authorities, NGOs, academic and research institutions.

Project executors: EDC, GLEN Latvija,

Project partner: Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences,

Associated partners:

Leeds Development Education Centre LEEDS DEC (United Kingdom),

MONDO (Estonia),

British Council in Latvia,

Project funders: Society Integration Fund,








Activity is carried out in the framework of the European Commission’s funded project "Global dimension in Social Science subjects in Formal Education" (Nr.DCI-NSAED /2012/280-401)