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Toolkit for Recognition for Refugees

On 15 and 16 June 2016, NOKUT had the honour of hosting the initial consortium meeting for the Erasmus+ action selected for funding by the European Commission. – The aim of the action is to contribute to the development of an appropriate common recognition toolkit to secure effective and streamlined recognition of qualifications for refugees, explains Stig Arne Skjerven, Director of Foreign Education in NOKUT/Norwegian ENIC-NARIC.

– NOKUT and Norway have extensive experience with recognition procedures for refugees, having developed the Recognition procedure for persons without verifiable documentation/UVD-procedure, NOKUT’s Qualifications Passport for Refugees and together with UK NARIC, addressed the need to establish a European Qualifications Passport for Refugees as early as in September 2015, says Skjerven.

Obligations of the Lisbon Recognition Convention

All signatory countries of the Lisbon Recognition Convention, have in Article VII made an obligation to “take all feasible and reasonable steps within the framework of its education system and in conformity with its constitutional, legal, and regulatory provisions to develop procedures designed to assess fairly and expeditiously whether refugees, displaced persons and persons in a refugee-like situation fulfill the relevant requirements for access to higher education, to further higher education programmes or to employment activities, even in cases in which the qualifications obtained in one of the Parties cannot be proven through documentary evidence.”

The project will run from June 2016 until March 2018

The Erasmus+ project on establishing a toolkit for recognition of refugees was developed while keeping in mind the NARIC Network’s mandate, in particular as it concerns practices and developing methodologies, and promoting cooperation between members of the network partners. The project, called “Toolkit for recognition of higher education for refugees, displaced persons and persons in a refugee-like situation (Refugees and Recognition)” will run from June 2016 until March 2018. The consortium consists of the following European ENIC-NARIC offices: UK NARIC (United Kingdom), EP-NUFFIC (the Netherlands), CIEP (France), CIMEA (Italy) and ArmENIC (Armenia). The consortium is led by NOKUT.

The first consortium meeting was organised by NOKUT in Oslo and included representatives from all the consortium partners, as well as a representative from the European Commission and representatives from the Swedish and German ENIC-NARIC offices. During the meeting, the consortium had the opportunity to present the existing procedures for evaluation of refugees’ qualifications, develop mutual understanding for future activities in the action, and work together on detailed planning of the project’s activities.

Funding from the European Commission

NOKUT would like to express gratitude to the European Commission for making it possible to initiate this project, and we thank our partners for their contribution.

– We are looking forward to cooperation on this important project supporting priority from the European Commission in developing a solid toolkit for recognition for refugees and persons in a refugee-like situation in signatory countries of The Lisbon Recognition Convention, says Skjerven.

 

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Photo: The Erasmus+ project – initial consortium meeting