VET and HRD research in European countries > Overview

Sweden  [2]  Context of EU policies and programmes

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The European Union’s main initiative to address resources, development and policy related to VET is the Leonardo da Vinci programme under the European Commission’s Directorate General for Education and Culture. Innovation and development of reference material in VET were supported by procedures B and C of the Leonardo da Vinci programme in phases one (1995-1999) and two (2000-2006). From 2007 a new integrated lifelong learning programme will support EU-sponsored research and development initiatives in VET. In Sweden these programmes are administered by the International Programme Office for Education and Training ( 

Although Sweden has only been granted one project under procedure C of the Leonardo da Vinci programme in recent years (EuroguideVAL, addressing Accreditation of Prior Learning as well as the identification and validation of non-formal and informal learning –, Swedish promoters have led almost 50 of the “development” projects funded under phase 2 of procedure B. These projects have addressed a wide range of issues including agricultural tourism, forestry skills, export training, transportation safety, foreign language learning for trades people, maritime safety, multicultural social services and developing a trans-European training for production engineers. Moreover, dozens of Swedish partners have participated in foreign-led Leonardo projects. The Swedish national agency for education is a partner on one such project – ECVET Reflector ( – analysing the relationship between the European credit transfer system for VET (ECVET) and national VET systems with regard to appraisal, validation and certification processes.

Although the establishment of national reference points for vocational qualifications (NRP) followed recommendation from the forum for Transparency, a project funded under LdV B suggested such measures. Another key measure now actively promoted in Sweden – certificate supplement – was also the outcome of a European project. Specifically, the EUCEBS (European Certificate of Basic Skills) project funded by the Leonardo da Vinci programme led to the development of certificate supplement under the Europass framework. Overall, the Lisbon process and associated goals articulated in Education and Training 2010  as well as reports developed at the European level subsequent to Lisbon have inspired the reform of VET in Sweden. Finally, there are several project proposals that would result in EU-sponsored innovation in the field of VET at the European and Swedish levels.

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Source: Cedefop - National Research Report Sweden (details see Bibliography)
Editor: Sabine Manning  © WIFO