The Erasmus+ programme is a European Union (EU) funding programme the fields of Education, Training, Youth and Sport which runs from 2014 – 2020. The Erasmus+ programme provides grants for a wide range of activities. The programme gives opportunities to students, trainees, staff and volunteers to spend a period abroad to increase their skills and employability and it supports organisations to work in transnational partnerships and to share innovative practices in the fields of education, training and youth.
Erasmus+ is managed at European level by the European Commission and is divided into two parts: decentralised and centralised activities.
Centralised activities are delivered at a European-level across all participating countries by the European Commission’s Executive Agency which is based in Brussels.
Decentralised activities are delivered at national level by a network of organisations known as National Agencies. National Agencies are themselves overseen by National Authorities, government departments responsible for ensuring the programme is delivered in their countries.
The Erasmus+ Programme comprises three different Key Actions (KA):
KA1: Learning Mobility of Individuals,
KA2: Cooperation for Innovation and Exchange Good Practices,
KA3: Support to Policy Reforms.
The Erasmus+ programme runs across all EU Member States, European Free Trade Area/European Economic Area countries and some candidate countries. These are known as Programme Countries, and all of them have National Agencies.
Other countries, known as Partner Countries, can also participate in the programme though to a more limited extent.
Strategic Partnerships are a decentralised action within Key Action 2 and aims to support the development, transfer and/or implementation of innovative practices as well as the implementation of joint initiatives promoting cooperation, peer learning and exchanges of experience at European level. Organisations can apply for funding to work in partnership with organisations from other participating countries.
Strategic Partnerships are open to any type of organisation active in any field of education, training and youth or other socio-economic sectors as well as to organisations carrying out activities that are transversal to different fields (e.g. local and regional authorities, recognition and validation centers, chambers of commerce, trade organisations, guidance centers, cultural organisations).
“Who can participate in the Erasmus+ programme?” – see: Erasmus+ Programme Guide, page 20.
Depending on the priority addressed by the project, Strategic Partnerships should involve the most appropriate and diverse range of partners in order to benefit from their different experiences, profiles and specific expertise and to produce relevant and high quality project results. To be funded, Strategic Partnerships must address either (a) at least one horizontal priority or (b) at least one specific priority relevant to the field of education, training and youth that is mostly impacted.
“Horizontal and Field-specific Priorities” – see: Erasmus+ Programme Guide, pages 106-110.
Information of the programme rules and priorities as well as details on funding can be found in the Erasmus+ Programme Guide. Most relevant sections of the Guide to start with:
General information about the Erasmus+ programme, pages 5-21.
Key Action 2: Strategic Partnerships, pages 104-127.