European initiatives to revive adult education from a BILDUNG perspective

On 1-2 June of the current year, in the city of Ghent, Belgium, the fourth meeting of the members of the team of the European Erasmus+ project took place – BILDUNG – “Building inclusive lifelong learning systems through the development of a European understanding of Bildung for future generations”. – Mrs. Prof. Univ. V. GORAȘ-POSTICĂ, expert-researcher in promoting the initiative given in the Republic of Moldova, participated as a member of the team for the development of the intellectual product number 4 – Sustainable Development and Bildung. We recall that Bildung promotes an education that addresses all aspects of the development of individuals, communities and societies, including holistically integrated, ethical, emotional and scientific dimensions. In doing so, Bildung strengthens democracy, teaches individuals how to be active citizens, and prepares them for the challenges that, although managed by nation-states, are uniquely experienced by each individual.

The meeting began with discussions on a publication from the international press regarding a more critical approach to Bildung in this project, with counter-arguments on the updated and contextualized relevance of research and the collection of good practices of adult education in key areas such as democracy. , digitization, sustainable development and basic skills.

Members of international working groups from countries such as Belgium, Switzerland, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Moldova, Spain presented and discussed the results of the development of five intellectual products, which will be widely disseminated for the revival of different areas of adult education.

The visit to the Ghent City Council acquainted us with advanced experiences of adult education in the city. Officials acknowledged from the start that the entire municipality is affected by inflation and rising prices, but secular history forces them to work for and with all residents to create an insured present and a sustainable future. The need to change the common mentality, to educate the consumer for whom they work together with the associative sector (a local official is responsible for the partnership with the NGOs in the city) was highlighted.

T​​he experience presented in detail by the representatives of the Ghent City Council referred to an advanced practice, initiated in 2005 by the Department of International Solidarity Management – Fashion, Food and ICT Trade Since then, Ghent, the third largest city in Belgium, has been renamed the City of Fairs, supported and organized by a complex network of volunteers, civil servants, experts and entrepreneurs. The main activity strategies are the following three: support for innovators / pioneers; good leadership, sustainable procurement and the promotion of a sustainable and ethical lifestyle.

In 2024, the city of Ghent will become the European capital of youth, recognizing that the ancient city is also friendly to young people, being recognized in Belgium as a university city, open for international cooperation, including with the Republic of Moldova.

Finally, we invite academics and practitioners alike to “visit” the dimensions of Bildung in a reflective, pragmatic way:, but also to value them various contexts of adult education.

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