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Final step towards a common Mediterranean Strategy on Education for Sustainable Development accomplished

on 24 June 2013.

More than 40 representatives of Ministries of Education, Ministries of Environment, regional and international organizations and NGOs from 14 Mediterranean countries met in Zagreb, Croatia on 17-18 June to work on the final draft of the Mediterranean Strategy on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). The Mediterranean Strategy on ESD is expected to be adopted at Ministerial level in October 2013 in Monaco. The meeting, entitled ‘Strengthening Education for Sustainable Development policies in the Mediterranean’ was organized within the framework of the EU-funded Horizon 2020 Capacity Building/Mediterranean Environment Programme in cooperation with the Croatian Ministry of Environmental and Nature Protection, the Mediterranean Information Office for Environment Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE) and the Mediterranean Education Initiative for Environment and Sustainability (MEdIES).

In her opening address, Ms. Ankica Njezic, Assistant Minister of Science, Education and Sports recognized Education for Sustainable Development as an indispensable tool in the process towards achieving Sustainable Development in the region. Mr. Mario Obrdalj, Assistant Minister of Environmental and Nature Protection confirmed his country’s commitment in favor of the adoption of a Mediterranean Strategy on ESD “with a view to encourage and inspire all countries to incorporate ESD into all forms of Education”. He also mentioned that “… we consider the Capacity Building component of the Horizon 2020 Initiative as a strong instrument for the development of knowledge and skills on a regional, national and local level given the outstanding results of the programme in building administrative capacities.”

The workshop focused on the principles of Sustainable Development and enhanced participants’ knowledge of the main ESD initiatives, namely the UN Decade on ESD and the UNECE Strategy on ESD. Best practices drawn from successful experiences in formal, non formal and informal ESD in Croatia were explored as Croatia implements a comprehensive ESD approach starting at pre-school level, encompassing university curricula and leading up to the sustainable development training of civil servants at local level. Concrete examples and paradigms for action were presented and discussed.

The politically significant part of the workshop focused on the discussion and finalization of the fifth draft of the MedESD, which will now be brought for adoption to the Joint Ministerial Conference of Ministers of Environment and Ministers of Education on 21 October 2013 in Monaco, organized under the auspices of Prince Albert II of Monaco and invited by the Principality of Monaco and the Prince Albert II Foundation.

More details on the content of the workshop can be found: http://www.h2020.net/en/resources/training-materials/viewcategory/260.html