Erasmus Mundus is a cooperation and mobility programme in the field of higher education that aims to enhance the quality of European higher education and to promote dialogue and understanding between people and cultures through cooperation with Third-Countries.
The Erasmus Mundus programme provides support to:
higher education institutions that wish to implement joint programmes at postgraduate level (Action 1) or to set-up inter-institutional cooperation partnerships between universities from Europe and targeted Third-Countries (Action 2);
individual students, researchers and university staff who wish to spend a study / research / teaching period in the context of one of the above mentioned joint programmes or cooperation partnerships (Action 1 and Action 2);
any organisation active in the field of higher education that wishes to develop projects aimed at enhancing the attractiveness, profile, visibility and image of European higher education worldwide (Action 3).
Erasmus Mundus 2009-2013 is implemented through of the following actions:
Action 1: Joint Programmes including scholarships
This Action will foster cooperation between higher education institutions and academic staff in Europe and Third Countries with a view to creating poles of excellence and providing highly trained human resources.
Joint programmes of outstanding academic quality are designed and implemented by a consortium of European universities from at least 3 different countries. Consortia may also include universities from other parts of the world. Scholarships / fellowships are open to higher education students and academics from all over the world. Programmes include obligatory study and research periods, in at least two universities, and award recognised double, multiple or joint degrees.
Action 1 provides:
- Support for high-quality joint masters courses (Action 1 A) and doctoral programmes (Action 1 B) offered by a consortium of European, and possibly Third Country, higher education institutions. Other types of organisations concerned by the content and outcomes of the joint programme can participate in the consortium.
- Scholarships/fellowships for Third Country and European students/doctoral candidates to follow these Erasmus Mundus joint masters' courses and doctoral programmes.
- Short-term scholarships for Third Country and European academics to carry out research or teaching assignments as part of the joint masters programmes.
Action 2: Partnerships with Third Country higher education institutions and scholarships for mobility
Partnerships in the framework of Erasmus Mundus 2009-2013 are the basis for enhancing academic cooperation and exchanges of students and academics, contributing to the socio-economic development of non-EU countries targeted by EU external cooperation policy. Consortia must include a minimum of 5 higher education institutions from at least 3 European countries and a number of higher education institutions from targeted non European regions. Special attention is given to disadvantaged groups and populations in vulnerable situations.
Action 2 provides:
- Support for the establishment of cooperation partnerships between European higher education institutions and higher education institutions from targeted Third Countries with the objective of organising and implementing structured individual mobility arrangements between the European and Third Country partners.
- Scholarships of various lengths - depending on the priorities defined for the Third Country concerned, the level of studies or the particular arrangements agreed within the partnership - for European* and Third-Country individuals (students, scholars, researchers, professionals).
Action 2 activities are funded by different financial instruments available in the context of the External Relations activities of the Union (i.e. the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument, the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance, the Development Cooperation and Economic Cooperation Policy Instrument, the European Development Fund and the Industrialised Countries Instrument). Because of the diversity in the policy objectives covered by these financial instruments, and the different needs and priorities of the Third Countries concerned, Action 2 implementation rules may vary considerably from one year to another and from one partner country to another.
Action 3: Promotion of European higher education
Action 3 promotes European higher education through measures enhancing the attractiveness of Europe as an educational destination and a centre of excellence at world level.
Action 3 projects should contribute to:
- the promotion and awareness raising of the European higher education sector as well as the relevant cooperation programmes and funding schemes;
- the dissemination of the programme's results and examples of good practice;
- the exploitation of these results at institutional and individual level.
This Action provides support to activities related to the international dimension of all aspects of higher education, such as promotion, accessibility, quality assurance, credit recognition, mutual recognition of qualifications, curriculum development and mobility.
Activities can be implemented by mixed networks of organisations active in the field of higher education composed of at least 3 participating organisations from European countries and 2 from Third Countries.