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20 November 2018

Due to transformations in higher education systems, policies and environments, a process of revision of the regional conventions was undertaken starting in 1997. Since then, three have been revised: the Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education in the European Region (the “Lisbon Convention”, 1997); the Asia-Pacific Regional Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications in Higher Education (the “Tokyo Convention”, 2011); and the Convention on the Recognition of Studies, Certificates, Diplomas, Degrees and other Academic Qualifications in Higher Education in the African States (the “Addis Convention”, 2014). The revision of the Convention on the Recognition of Studies, Diplomas and Degrees in Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (the “LAC Convention”, 1974) was launched in 2015 and, in line with 39 C/Resolution 82, it is expected to be examined and adopted at an International Conference of States (category I) in 2019. Invitations to the International Conference of States for the revision of the LAC Convention will be submitted to the 205th session of the Executive Board.

The revision of the Arab Convention:

The revision process of the Convention on the Recognition of Studies, Diplomas and Degrees in Higher Education in the Arab States (the “Arab States Convention”, 1978) were initiated in 2017 during consultation meetings between UNESCO and higher education experts from the Arab States (Sharm El Sheikh, March 20170 and continues to Cairo, October 2017 with the participation of UNHCR and in Rabat, March 2018). By 39 C/Resolution 83, the General Conference, at its 39th session, requested the Director-General to support the preparation and conclusion of the revision process of the Arab States Convention as well as to assist Member States thereon. Furthermore, it invited the Director-General to submit to the 204th session of the Executive Board a proposal for the convening of an International Conference of States (category I), for the adoption of the revised text.

In order to elaborate a revised Arab States Convention, a working group composed of technical experts from the region and UNESCO had revised the text with the support of the convention’s Secretariat from UNESCO Beirut Office and with the technical support from HED/Section/HQ, with a view to adopting it at an International Conference of States in the first half of 2019. The working group had ensured that the revised Convention fulfills regional specificities and is elaborated taking into account the proposed future Global Convention on the Recognition of Higher Education Qualifications.

The working-group in Cairo meeting has confirmed the need of establishing such information centers on national and regional levels and requested UNESCO BO to work on this process.


The proposed training seminar will have the following objectives:
  • The overall objective is to train two experts from the ministries of education and higher education from the Arab States who are working with the recognition process in their respective countries and organizations.
  • First, it will bring together 38-40 experts from the Arab region with the goal of joint (and peer) learning information and experience sharing in fields of the recognition in higher education. We will invite the Member States to present and share with existing recognition practices. The experts will contribute in the design of the future Arab Regional Information Center (ARIC).
  • Third to learn how to create and work with national and regional information centers for higher education recognition including the recognition for higher education qualifications in emergencies (IDP, refugees, etc..)
  • The training will be supported by two-three experts from the ENIC- Network who has a long experience in managing the recognition information centers as national as regional ones.
  • AUF will invite an expert from the French National Information center to present the national case in collaboration with other Arab countries.