Thematic Networks

Objectives and Description of the Action

The aims of Leonardo da Vinci Thematic Networks are to strengthen the link between the various ‘actors’ involved in vocational training, to improve the quality, European dimension and visibility of activities or issues of common interest in the field of vocational and educational training.
In particular the Leonardo da Vinci Thematic Networks aim at:

  • Assembling, distilling and building on European expertise and innovatory approaches;
  • Improving the analysis and anticipation of skill requirements; and
  • Disseminating the network outputs and project results throughout the Union in the appropriate circles.

The objectives of Leonardo da Vinci Thematic Networks are:

  • To pool knowledge in a specific domain at the regional or sectoral level, to share experience and foster innovation (new approaches) in vocational training by bringing together experts or organisations specialised in a particular field;
  • To identify the trends and skills requirements in this area and improve the anticipated benefit of vocational training initiatives; and
  • Publish the results of work undertaken by such transnational networks through the relevant channels so as to promote greater innovation and transnational co-operation in vocational training.

The principles for the implementation of Leonardo da Vinci Thematic Networks are:

  • Establishing a vocational training network between multiple players by bringing together in the participating countries, at the regional or sectoral level, the public and private players concerned;
  • Carrying out a work programme on a given subject (this principle implies that the Community financial support is granted for the implementation of the work programme and related activities rather than for the existence of the network per se);
  • Ensuring that the activities of the network are not confined to their contractual period only (from the outset each network should foresee a strategy to allow its activities to be continued beyond the period financed by the Community);
  • The proposals should also include the provision, based on the initial results, for a widening of the network, accompanied by a plan for canvassing new potential partners.

The partnership must be multiplayer, i.e. involve a variety of players capable of contributing to the proposal’s objectives. Its members may include local authorities, chambers of commerce, trade organisations for employers and employees (social partners), companies, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and research and vocational training centres, including universities.

Inclusion of political decision-makers, such as local and regional authorities, will ensure the durability of the partnership.

This action is not designed exclusively for the establishment of new networks. Members of existing networks (in the field of VET) may wish to form new networks to work in complementary areas or to use their combined expertise in new areas.

Who can benefit

All those in vocational education and training, other than at tertiary level, as well as the institutions and organisations facilitating such education and training, such as :

  • Institutions or organisations providing learning opportunities in the fields covered by the Leonardo da Vinci sectoral programme;
  • Associations and representatives of those involved in vocational education and training, including trainees’, parents’ and teachers’ associations;
  • Enterprises, social partners and other representatives of working life, including chambers of commerce and other trade organisations;
  • Bodies providing guidance, counselling and information services relating to any aspect of lifelong learning;
  • Bodies responsible for systems and policies concerning any aspect of lifelong learning vocational education and training at local, regional and national level;
  • Research centres and bodies concerned with lifelong learning issues;
  • Higher education institutions;
  • Non-profit organisations, voluntary bodies, NGOs.

Please refer to the current call for proposals and related deadlines by clicking here.