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Educational inequality in Europe: LIfBi participates in international LEARN project

Understanding educational inequalities in Europe and showing policymakers new ways to promote educational equality: This is the aim of the LEARN project (Longitudinal Educational Achievements: Reducing iNequalities), in which twelve research institutions from nine European countries have joined forces. Together, they want to use high-quality longitudinal data to investigate the development of educational inequalities in Europe. The aim is to enable policymakers to make scientifically based decisions. Germany is one of the case study countries and is being examined using data from the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS), which is based at LIfBi.

Despite the high level of education in Europe, there are considerable educational inequalities within and between European countries. The European LEARN project is funded by the European Commission under Horizon Europe. It aims to better understand these inequalities by compiling existing information, generating new knowledge and developing evidence-based guidelines for policy makers.

Researchers from twelve research institutions and universities in Europe are using existing longitudinal survey and register data to investigate the emergence and development of educational inequalities in nine selected European countries. Estonia, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Romania, Switzerland and the UK were chosen because they represent the European diversity of welfare and education systems. The research focuses on the development of inequalities over the course of educational careers, both within individual countries and across countries.

LEARN pursues three objectives: 

  • First, to review, comparatively document and source existing data in order to produce analyses based on high-quality longitudinal education-related datasets from Europe.
  • Secondly, tools for policy makers are to be developed that refer to the results of longitudinal analyses and support them in policy making.
  • Thirdly, interventions that compensate for educational inequalities shall be identified. To this end, a synthesis of existing studies from Europe will be compiled that examine specific trends in educational inequalities and interventions to reduce them.

At LIfBi, LEARN is led by Prof. Dr. Corinna Kleinert, head of the department "Educational Decisions and Processes, Migration and Returns to Education". She is looking forward to the work and the exchange with the project partners: "Educational inequalities are one of the greatest challenges facing European societies. Such a wide-ranging project offers great opportunities to tackle these challenges in an international and multidisciplinary way."

More about LEARN: 

Educational inequality in Europe: LIfBi participates in international LEARN project
Danielle Rice/unsplash

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