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One of the older member states, Spain is holding the EU Presidency during the first six months of 2010. In the area of education, a well-balanced Mediterranean approach is to be expected. According to ?ngel Gabilondo, the Spanish Minister of Education, one of the basic pillars of the presidency is building a new bridge between education and economy. The internationalisation of higher education and the modernisation of universities are among the top priorities.
The Spanish Presidency aims to facilitate investments into education actions through research and innovation with the use of additional financial resources and appropriate and equitable financing models. Señor Gabilondo pledged to be guided on four main objectives: “making continuous learning and mobility a reality”; “improving the quality and efficacy of education and training”; “promoting fairness, social cohesion and active civic responsibility” and “reinforcing creativity, innovation and entrepreneurial spirit at all the levels of education”. Placing the Bologna Process and the European Higher Education Area in focus, they are highly committed to further European integration.
By promising to address literally all possible European objectives in education, the Spanish Presidency certainly placed the stakes high. While this commitment is honourable, the six months duration of the Presidency is unlikely to fulfil all the mentioned goals, thus keeping expectations at a realistic level is crucial. Yet, every step towards the common objectives may become a giant leap on the path of European education development.