05/10/2015 09:00:00 Education and the Investment Plan for Europe

In November 2014, the European Commission launched the Investment Plan for Europe to boost economic recovery and strengthen Europe's competitiveness by reversing the downward trend of investment. At the heart of the Investment Plan is the new European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), created to mobilise additional investments in the real economy. Education is among the key sectors targeted for EFSI support.   

On 5 October 2015, the European Commission and the European Investment Bank organised a successful joint event to raise awareness on the existing and new funding possibilities for the education and training sector, and to help to mobilise potential project promoters.

Jyrki Katainen, Vice-President of the European Commission for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, insisted on the need to invest in education and research as well as in traditional and digital infrastructure in order to recover economic growth, to confront the issues of ageing and to stay competitive in the globalised world. He offered support from the European Commission to help with this through the "Hub", providing technical assistance for potential project promoters. Commissioner Navracsics highlighted that the private sector can play its part in investing in education and that there are ample opportunities to combine the European Fund for Strategic investments (EFSI) with the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF). Martine Reicherts concluded the conference underlining that this event was a first step for mobilising the education sector to use the Investment Plan. She invited the sector to develop high quality projects and underlined the importance of mobilising relevant partners in developing investment projects.

The conference was also an opportunity for education stakeholders to share their experience with the EIB and to express their needs towards potential investors. 

Participants had the opportunity to hear about existing projects that can serve as examples of the kinds of initiatives which can benefit from the Investment Plan - in early childhood education, primary and secondary school level, vocational education, training and higher education. 

LINKS TO PRESENTATIONS: 

Introductory panel: How can EU investment target needs in education?

-          An Investment Plan for Europe, Alessandro Carano, Senior Adviser on Jobs, Growth and Investment, DG Economic and Financial Affairs, European Commission

-          EIB’s lending activities in support of education, Harald Gruber, Head of the Digital Economy and Education Division, European Investment Bank

-          The role of national promotional banks, Kerstin Kiehl, Vice-President, Head of Product Management, KfW, Germany

-          Complementarities between the European Fund for Strategic Investments and the European Structural and Investment Funds, Stefan AppelHead of Unit for Financial Instruments and International Financial Institutions Relations, DG Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission 

Experience from recent EIB lending in the education sector

-          SHOWCASING EXISTING PROJECTS ON SCHOOLS AND VOCATIONAL EDUCATION AND TRAINING

EXPERIENCE FROM EIB PROJECTS IN PRE-PRIMARY, PRIMARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION, INCLUDING VOCATIONAL EDUCATION AND TRAINING

1)       BSF EDUCATION PPP PROJECT FOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS (UK), Craig McDougall

2)       LYCEES REGION POITOU-CHARENTES (FR), Daniel Parizot

3)       PARQUE ESCOLAR, E.P.E (PT), Ana Neves

4)       PRE-PRIMARY EDUCATION: A U.S. VIEWPOINT ON HOW TO HARNESS PRIVATE INVESTMENT (READYNATION), Sara Watson

-          SHOWCASING EXISTING PROJECTS ON HIGHER EDUCATION

EXPERIENCE FROM EIB PROJECTS IN TERTIARY EDUCATION 

1) TRENTO HIGHER EDUCATION AND RESEARCH PROJECT (IT), Alex Pellacani
2) DIAKHITEL STUDENT LOAN (HU), Balázs Havelda 
3) SWANSEA UNIVERSITY INNOVATION HUB (UK), Professor Iwan Davies 
4) BOCCONI UNIVERSITY CAMPUS (IT), Bruno Pavesi
5) CAMPUS VRIJE UNIVERSITEIT AMSTERDAM (NL), Josja van der Veer 

European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT)

The EIT, its knowledge and innovation communities (KICS) and the Investment Plan for Europe: new opportunities and potential project ideas

Martin Kern, Interim Director, European Institute of Innovation and Technology
Andreas Benkitsch
Ebrahim Mohamed