24 May

The Council adopted conclusions on equity, inclusion and success in education and training for all and on the European Universities initiative. The European Universities initiative is one of the most important and most innovative European initiatives in the field of higher education; it is a fundamental pillar of the European Education Area to be built by 2025. It is a success that Hungarian higher education institutions participate in 11 European University alliances out of the 41 European alliances. Following up on the Council conclusions on the European Universities initiative, ministers held a policy debate on the future of European higher education and, in particular, on the role of higher education institutions, as drivers of change towards the digital and green transitions.

In the youth field, the Council adopted conclusions on strengthening multi-level governance when promoting the participation of young people in decision-making processes, to ensure that all young people have equal opportunities for participation, involvement and empowerment in relevant decision-making processes. Young people are among those who have been hardest hit by COVID-19 pandemic. The ministers during their public debate discussed the need to introduce evidence-based, cross-sectoral policies, involving young people, while taking into account their rights, the trends and challenges that affects them, and ensure fair and equal opportunities in all areas of their life.

Cultural and creative sectors are among the hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. The conclusions on the recovery, resilience and sustainability of the cultural and creative sectors adopted by the Council responds to that, while also applying a more ambitious and far-sighted approach, concerning some structural challenges in the sector brought into the forefront by the crises. Cultural ministers also discussed about the diversification of funding sources and mechanisms for the safeguarding and protection of European cultural heritage.

The Council adopted conclusions to support the recovery of the news media and audiovisual sectors after the COVID-19 pandemic and their digital and green transformation, also providing guidelines to the Commission for the implementation of the initiatives foreseen in the Media and Audiovisual Action Plan published in December 2020.

In the field of sport, the Council has approved conclusions on sport innovation and discussed about the potential of sport diplomacy and whether an EU sport diplomacy strategy is needed.