European Institute of Education and Social Policy
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You can find the  links to the most recent issues here:

Volume 53, No. 4, November 2018
Reconceptualising system transitions in education for marginalised and vulnerable groups
Guest Editors: Paul Downes, Erna Nairz‐Wirth, Jim Anderson

Volume 53, No. 3, September 2018
Learner agency at the confluence between rights-based approaches and well-being
Guest Editor: Jean Gordon

Volume 53, No. 2 June 2018
Special Issue: Are Student Assessments Fit For Their Purposes?
Guest Editor: Janet Looney

Volume 53, No. 1. March 2018
Special Issue: Innovative approaches to Continuous Professional Development in Early Childhood Education and Care. A European perspective.
Guest Editors: Brecht Peleman, Bente Jensen and Jan Peeters

Volume 52, No. 4 December 2017
Special Issue: Education for people, prosperity and planet: Can we meet the sustainability challenges?
Guest Editor: Aaron Benavot

Volume 52, No. 3 September 2017
Title: Participatory Design for (Built) Learning Environments
Guest Editors: Karen D. Könings and Susan McKenney

Volume 52, No. 2 June 2017
Title: The Influence of PISA on Education Policies
Guest Editors: Alain Michel and Xavier Pons

Volume 52, No.1 March 2017
Title : Higher education learning outcomes - transforming higher education ?
Guest Editors : Joakim Caspersen and Nicoline Frolich

Volume 51, No.4 December 2016
Title: Governance Dynamics in Complex Decentralised Education Systems
Guest Editors: Edith Hooge

Volume 51, No 3 September 2016
Title : Vocational Schooling and Social Exclusion in the Western Balkans
Guest Editors : Claire Gordon and Will Bartlett

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Improving the attractiveness and image of VET (2006-2007)

Type of project/activity :

A comparative study of 32 European countries with reference to additional OECD countries as part of the CEDEFOP programme: Modernising vocational education and training (Preparation of the 4th Report on vocational education and training (VET) research in Europe)

Objectives :

The objectives of the study are:

  • to elaborate some factors that constitute and are related to attractiveness of VET;
  • to review why and how the issue of attractiveness of VET has been raised;
  • to survey the statistics of the enrolments in upper secondary general and vocational education between females and males, and in vocational higher education between occupational fields;
  • to compare the unemployment rates and salaries between persons with different education attainment levels;
  • to map the member states' policy measures to improve attractiveness of VET;

Background :

In recent decades, public authorities in the EU Member States and the EFTA-EEA [1] countries have been obliged to review their systems of vocational education and training in response to fluctuating economic and demand situations. Learning has undergone major developments, adapting to new students and trainees and a range of sometimes conflicting requirements, through the introduction of more flexibility to the content and delivery of courses, approaches to recognising prior learning, new awards and qualification structures and frameworks and, in some countries, major organisational changes . In the new Member States and the accession countries, the economic pressures of transition have also led to substantial review and reform of the education and training systems and provision with many of the same aims and challenges.

Making VET systems more open, flexible and attractive is now identified as a major part of the European economic, employment and social agenda. Opening and consolidating a range of new pathways between VET and higher education as well as VET at tertiary level are defined as key aspects of improving education and training systems which have a dynamic role in developing labour force and human skills. Furthermore, achieving this objective is also intended to open up more flexible opportunities for learners - potentially all citizens - as European countries move towards the model of a learning society. These opportunities should equally limit the dead ends and barriers to further progression that have often been associated with VET pathways.

Partners :

The report was authored by Johanna Lasonen of the Institute for Educational Research, University of Jyväskylä (Finland) and Jean Gordon of the EIESP (France).

Main activities :

The primary purpose of the study is to inform policy development and implementation at European and national levels within the context of VET development and lifelong learning linked to the Lisbon process, particularly concerning the objectives of promoting the attractiveness of VET. Existing data on trends in qualifications flows and outcomes (from OECD, EUROSTAT, the European Training Foundation (ETF), and national sources) were used to assess progress towards the 2010 goals concerning the attractiveness of VET. The qualitative aspects of the examination are provided through data drawn from recent country reports drafted in response to reporting processes put in place by the European Commission, linked to the reporting on the Lisbon Process.

Name of programme, funder or client :

European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP)

Expected outcomes, reports/documents :

The study was submitted to CEDEFOP in July 2007. See the CEDEFOP's webpage for the full version of the study.

For more information please contact Jean Gordon at

[1] European Free Trade Association – European Economic Area