The future of student mobility ?

Today - 31 January 2020 - the United Kingdom leaves the European Union following the passing of the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020 by the UK Parliament.

Many things, however, still need to be determined, ideally within the transition period which concludes on 31 December 2020. 

One of the key issues for the higher education sector is the future of the Erasmus + student exchange scheme which concludes as an Union programme on 31 December 2020.

In Prime Minister's Questions on 15 January 2020, Boris Johnson confirmed that there was 'no threat' to the Erasmus scheme for UK students and those wishing participate on such a scheme by coming to the UK.

In the Political Declaration which accompanied the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK and the EU agreed to "establish general principles, terms and conditions for the UK's participation in Union areas such as science and innovation, youth culture and education...".

Information published in October 2019 by the Department of Education, Ecorys UK, the British Council concerning Erasmus + confirmed that the life-time pan-European budget for the years 2014-2018 was 14.7 billion euros. This included 4, 846 UK projects, 167,000 UK participants and funding of 679.7 million euros.

We await developments on this - and other - important matters for the future UK/EU relationship for the higher education and research sector.


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