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Greek Corner
MEdIES in the GAP Partner Network 1

Neroupoli, the Greek water-city

MARLISCO exhibition


First World Non-Formal Education Forum
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Since April 2015 MEdIES is offically participating in the GAP Partner Network 1 working on the Priority Action Area of "Advancing policy", after accepting the official invitation by UNESCO. Prof Scoullos, MEdIES Coordinator is also Co-Chairing the Network.

The Global Action Programme (GAP) on ESD was launched during the World Conference on ESD in Aichi-Nagoya, (November 2014). The five Priority Action areas of the GAP are:

1. Advancing ESD Policy (strengthening and scaling-up ESD in national and regional level education and sustainable development policies);

2. Transforming learning and training environments (promoting the whole-institution approaches in formal education at all levels and in non-formal education);

3. Building capacities of educators and trainers (integrating ESD in teachers' pre-service and in-service training; supporting the capacity building activities in non formal and informal education);

4. Empowering and mobilizing the youth (supporting youth-led initiatives for ESD; empowering the role of youth);

5. Accelerating solutions at local level (developing ESD programmes for local communities/municipalities).


The Roadmap for Implementing the GAP presenting in more details these five Priority Action Areas can be found herehttp://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0023/002305/230514e.pdf

UNESCO has set up five "Partner Networks", one for each Priority Area that will help to implement the GAP. They are consisted of a limited number of strategically selected key ESD stakeholders whose actions are expected to have a catalytic effect.

The Partner Networks have met for the first time in Paris on 26-27 May 2015, when they discussed the goals and function of the Networks, and worked on ideas for particular work plans and joint activities within each Network. Particularly for the PN1, the members have been in e-communication and in September 30, they held a teleconference during which they shared proposals for a Workplan of the network and its respective Flagship Project.

This Flagship Project will be a concrete collaboration amongst the Key GAP Partners on advancing ESD in policies. It will have a specific limited focus on advancing ESD in policies at national level, using regional level cooperation and policies to further advance national policies and demonstrating how ESD promotes Sustainable Development and facilitates the achievement of the SDGs. It will be also very useful to demonstrate how the various regional or international frameworks are used at national level in order to promote ESD.

The Flagship Project, therefore, will provide a coherent framework for major policy initiatives at national level to become mutually supportive, enhancing their visibility and effectiveness and scaling-up ESD cooperation at regional level.


On 5-6 July 2016 the annual (second) GAP Working Meeting took place in Paris while one day before, on July 4 a meeting of the Chairs and Co Chairs of the Partner Networks was held. During the meeting the developments of the Partner Networks were presented together with the related Flagship Projects will and workplans while the participants worked in groups and elaborated ideas on how to scale up partners' activities as well as the future steps of the GAP. Prof Scoullos contributed actively in the meeting's sessions and made the presentation on the developments of the PN1 as one of its Co-chairs. Additionally the booklet presenting the GAP Key Partners was launched in the meeting. MEdIES is presented as well! The Booklet can be accessed from here:

Read more about the meeting here

GAP Partners group photo during their meeting in July 2016, Paris


From 6 to 8 March 2017 the Review Forum for the GAP (third meeting) took place in Ottawa, Canada, aiming to review the progress so far, in the implementation of the projects and initiatives under the GAP, from all  five Networks. On 8 March the GAP Forum (noon) was succesfully completed  and in the afternoon, the Conference was lauched. The 3-day Forum was organized along interactive concurrent sessions and town hall debates on different topics such as “Effective teaching and learning for transformation”, “Preparing educators for ESD” and “Emerging global issues for ESD”. Prof Scoullos, MEdIES Coordinator and PN1 Co-Chair participated actively in all sessions of the GAP Forum and attended the UNESCO Week on Peace and Sustainable Development: the role of Education (8-10 March) as well.


In September 2017 MEdIES was officially requested by UNESCO to renew and extend its membership (to 2019) in the GAP Partner Network 1,  which MEdIES proudly accepted. Actually during the last quarter of 2017, MEdIES 'proved' its role as a GAP Partner competent in advancing ESD policy in the Mediterranean  by organising a series of national meetings and events for mainstreaming and promoting  the application of the Action Plan of the Mediterranean Strategy on ESD in various countries of the region (all supported by the SWIM-H2020 SM Programme) and one regional (Mediterranean-wide) event. More for these activities at this link.

The 2018 meeting of the GAP Partners took place on April 25-27, 2018 in Costa Rica Earth Charter at the Center for ESD at the University for Peace entitled as “Looking into the Future of ESD, together”. This meeting had the purpose to review and discuss the draft UNESCO position paper on the "Future of ESD" (as a post-GAP position paper) and to plan the work of the Partner Networks until the end of 2019 (when the GAP is actually ending). The meeting was organised with the financial support of the Japan Fund. Over 90 Key Partners participated in the interactive sessions and discussion. The closing of the meeting also celebrated the launch of the new UNESCO publication: Issues and Trends in Education for Sustainable Development aiming at providing policy-makers, educators, and other stakeholders with state-of-the-art analyses of topical issues pertaining to ESD.

The draft position paper on the future of ESD was elaborated through a series of consultations

Find here some intitial comments by MEdIES on the first draft of the position paper.

The last one 'live' consultation was the Technical Consultation Meeting on the Future of ESD (July 9-10, Bangkok, Thailand). Read here the Report of the Technical Consultation meeting in Bangkok.



The first in a series of Policy Briefs related to the GAP's thematic priorities on ESD & the SDGs was by Mr Robert Didham with the support of the members of the Partner Network 1, and can be downloaded from here.

A second one Policy Brief about Regional Networks on ESD was developed by MEdIES with the cooperation of the PN1 members and is accessible from here



ESD Video “Think, Live and Act together. Be part of the change through ESD” Launched in 2018 and available on YouTube with subtitles in English, French and Spanish. This is the first official video, developed by UNESCO, presenting the GAP activities at international, regional and national level!


SDG 4 - Education 2030: Part II, Education for Sustainable Development beyond 2019

Following the Bangkok GAP Meeting, the advanced draft Position Paper on the Future of ESD was further elaborated in the the framework of an online open public consultation during autumn 2018 and the finalised draft  was presented to the UNESCO Executive Board and finally approved in April 2019. The paper "Education 2030, ESD beyond 2019" provides the goals, the proposed approach, an implementation framework as well as some administrative implication for the application and monitoring of ESD in the countries fully in line with the SDGs and particulalry the SDG 4.7 and Agenda 2030. It covers the period of 2020-2030 and is available at the link:



The Annual Meeting of the GAP Partners will take place back-to-back with the Global Forum on ESD/GCED from 2 to 5 July 2019 in Ha Noi, Viet Nam, organized by UNESCO, in cooperation with the Ministry of Education and Training of Viet Nam and the Viet Nam National Commission for UNESCO. This time the thematic focus will be "Learning and Teaching for Peaceful and Sustainable Societies: From early childhood to primary and secondary education". The 2019 Forum presented the outcomes of UNESCO’s study on how the three learning dimensions of ESD and GCED (cognitive, socio-emotional and behavioral) are reflected in curricula at all levels of schooling in a select number of countries, with a view to understanding trends, identifying major gaps and challenges and highlighting innovative approaches to harness the potential of the three domains of learning in order to support sustainable development and global citizenship. More about the Forum and the GAP Meeting in Ha Noi can be found here.




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