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Session Overview
30 SES 16 B: Symposium: European voices for Global Education and Learning
Friday, 25/Aug/2023:
1:30pm - 3:00pm

Session Chair: Massimiliano Tarozzi
Session Chair: Douglas Bourn
Location: Hetherington, 133 [Floor 1]

Capacity: 40 persons


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30. Environmental and Sustainability Education Research (ESER)

European voices for Global Education and Learning. A review of non-English literatures

Chair: Massimiliano Dr Massimiliano Tarozzi (University of Bologna)

Discussant: Douglas Bourn (IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education & Society)

This symposium aims to explore the state of the art of research in Global Education and Learning (GEL) in current Europe. Drawing on data collected from the five editions of the Multilingual Global Education Digest, the symposium will look particularly at the contribution of literature other than English, namely Finnish, Portuguese and Italian, discussing these three cases in the framework of European academic production in GEL and related issues.

In the last decade, the focus on the global dimension in education has grown both in the educational policies of many national governments and in the practices of formal and non-formal education. In this context GEL has become an umbrella term covering a range of educational traditions and a body of knowledge on global issues.

In Europe, the so-called “global education” approach was first reflected in the Global Education Charter, adopted in 1997 by the Council of Europe. Subsequently, the Maastricht Declaration promoted in 2002 by the Council of Europe has so far provided a framework for European and member state strategies on global education. After 20 years the Maastricht declaration has been revised at the end of a long public consultation process involving experts and stakeholders and gave rise to what has been designated the Dublin Declaration (GENE, 2022)

While there is extensive literature and systematic review on GCE (Goren & Yemini, 2017), and ESD (Bascopé et al., 2019) there is a lack of in-depth analysis on the academic contribution in European languages other than English. Yet data show that out of 3,500 publications that have been published in the last ten years in 10 European languages only half are in English (ANGEL, 2020, 2021, 2022).

However, as papers in this symposium will demonstrate there has been a considerable engagement in GEL themes within a range of European countries such as Germany, Italy, Finland, Spain and Portugal. The discussion will recognise the important role played by literature in English as lingua franca of the international research community, but a distinctive feature of this symposium will be also to ensure that voices on debates from other European languages as well as from other regions of the world are included.

The papers in this symposium will combine literature analysis in various European countries with data included in various editions of the Multilingual Global Education Digest. The 5 editions of this report provide a reasoned bibliography of academic and research materials relevant to the field of GEL, outlining the growing space that this approach occupies within the scholarly discourse and providing an invaluable guide for researchers, policymakers and practitioners. The first edition compiled literature published from 2015-2017, and was followed by editions in 2018, 2020, 2021 and 2022. Over time, the Digest has expanded to incorporate research in an increasing number of languages, with the last edition including 10 languages: English, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Slovakian, and Spanish.

The Global Education Digest project, was developed by the Academic Network of Global Education and Learning (ANGEL) and was coordinated by the Development Education Research Centre (DERC) at UCL, Institute of Education and the UNESCO Chair in Global Citizenship Education at the University of Bologna with the contribution of 36 scholars from 13 different countries.

The symposium will look at different national trends in this research area giving voice to three emblematical and diverse cases: Finnish (Riikka Suhonen et al.), Portuguese (Dalila Cohelo et al.) and Italian (Carla Inguaggiato et al.). Finally, Douglas Bourn will critically discuss the papers by also bringing in the English perspective.

ANGEL (2020). Global Education Digest 2020. London: Development Education Research Centre, UCL Institute of Education
ANGEL (2021). Global Education Digest 2021. London: Development Education Research Centre, UCL Institute of Education.
ANGEL (2022). Global Education Digest 2022. London: Development Education Research Centre, UCL Institute of Education.
Bascopé, M., Perasso, P., Reiss, K. (2019). Systematic Review of Education for Sustainable Development at an Early Stage: Cornerstones and Pedagogical Approaches for Teacher Professional Development. Sustainability, 11, 719.
Bourn, D. (2020) (ed.). Bloomsbury Handbook of Global Education and Learning. London: Bloomsbury.
Davies, I., Ho, L-C., Kiwan, D. Peck,C. Peterson, A,  Sant, E. and Waghid, Y. (2018) (eds.) The Palgrave Handbook of Global Citizenship and Education. London: Palgrave
Forghani-Arani, N. Hartmeyer, H. O'Loughlin, E. and Wegimont, L. (2013) Global Education in Europe. Muntser: Waxmann
Hartmeyer, H. and Wegimont, L. (2018) Global Education Revisted. Munster: Waxmann
McAuley, J. (2018) (ed.). The State of Global Education, 2018. Dublin: GENE.
GENE (2022). The European Declaration on Global Education to 2050. The Dublin Declaration. A Strategy Framework for Improving and Increasing Global Education in Europe to 2050. Dublin: GENE.
Goren, H., & Yemini, M. (2017). Global citizenship education redefined – A systematic review of empirical studies on global citizenship education. International Journal of Educational Research, 82, 170–183.


Presentations of the Symposium


Insights from global education research in Finland (2017-2021)

Riikka Suhonen (University of Helsinki), Vihtori Kylänpää (Non-Military Service Centre in Finland), Tuija Kasa (University of Helsinki), Hanna Posti-Ahokas (University of Helsinki)

The change of concepts around Global Education and Learning (GEL) in Finnish language has been constant (Lehtomäki & Rajala, 2020). The National Core Curriculum for Basic Education (EDUFI, 2014) includes concepts such as ‘global education’ (globaalikasvatus) and ‘global responsibility’ (globaali vastuu), while the National Core Curriculum for General Upper Secondary Education (EDUFI, 2019) features ‘global competence’ (globaali osaaminen), ‘global citizenship’ (globaalikansalaisuus) and ‘international competence’ (kansainvälinen osaaminen). Finnish civil society organisations prominently use ‘global citizenship education’ (globaali kansalaiskasvatus). A particular concept in the Finnish context since the 2010s is ‘ecosocial Bildung’ (ekososiaalinen sivistys) or ‘ecosocial education’ (ekososiaalinen kasvatus), related to theories of posthumanism, strong sustainability and ecofeminism, stressing interdependence and relations between humans and other-than-humans, and taking into account global perspective and future generations (Pulkki et al., 2021). The research review was based on the Maastricht Declaration definition of Global Education. As our literature search for publications in Finnish was conducted for the first time, we included an extensive list of keywords, stemming both from the history and from the recent policy and academic debate such as global competence, ecosocial Bildung, futures education and climate change education. The aim was to discover unexpected publications as not all relevant research explicitly uses the term ‘global education’ or ‘global citizenship education’ in Finnish. Our search produced a total of 105 Finnish language publications related to global education published between 2017 and 2021 (Suhonen et al., 2022), of which 45% were academic articles, 20% grey materials, 19% books or book chapters, 10% reports and 6% doctoral theses. Publications focused mainly on formal education (n = 41, 39%) as well as on theoretical and conceptual discussions (n = 23, 22%). Notably only two publications examined international volunteering, study visits and educational partnerships, and six publications teacher education. A thorough keyword analysis of these Finnish language publications on global education highlights trends and specific features of the publications and their use of terms. The results show that although there is a diversity of concepts used in the Finnish context, global education is still the most common keyword used, whereas global citizenship education did not feature that much yet. We conclude that conceptual clarity and new directions are necessary also in the Finnish context. As an example, the relationship between global education and environmental and sustainability education needs to be further explored and clarified.


Finnish National Agency for Education EDUFI (2014). National Core Curriculum for Basic Education. Finnish National Agency for Education EDUFI (2019). National Core Curriculum for General Upper Secondary Education. Lehtomäki, E., & Rajala, A. (2020). Global Education Research in Finland. In D. Bourn (Ed.), The Bloomsbury Handbook of Global Education and Learning, 105-120. Bloomsbury Academic. Pulkki, J., Varpanen, J. & Mullen, J. (2021). Ecosocial Philosophy of Education: Ecologizing the Opinionated Self. Stud Philos Educ 40, 347–364. Suhonen, R., Kylänpää, V., Posti-Ahokas, H., Piipponen, O. & Kasa, T. (2022). Finnish / Suomi: Johdanto. In Multilingual Global Education Digest 2022, 61-78. Development Education Research Centre DERC: University College of London.

Ten years of Global Education and Learning in Portugal: trends and debates

Dalila Pinto Coelho (University of Porto), Mónica Lourenço (University of Aveiro), Francisco Parrança da Silva (University of Aveiro)

Understanding GEL in Portugal demands looking at its informal and formal emergence (Coelho, Caramelo, & Menezes, 2019). Its informal rise exemplifies a critical orientation at the root of GEL, while its formal constitution links to larger European efforts (Coelho, Caramelo, & Menezes, 2019; O’Loughlin & Wegimont, 2014). Development NGOs were (and remain) central, while the field has expanded to formal education and policy level actors, reflecting European trends (GENE, 2022). Development Education and Global Citizenship Education have, therefore, shaped GEL in Portugal, exemplifying the varied and intersectional nature of GEL the Dublin Declaration alludes to. Grounded on a literature compilation over a decade (see ANGEL, 2020, 2021, 2022), firstly we discuss key trends and implications. Secondly, we consider the particular situation of GEL in teacher training and formal education in Portugal, given the high number of publications on these topics. In the last three editions of the Multilingual Global Education Digest we identified 119 documents in Portuguese published between 2010-2021, mostly after 2015. Academic journal articles are the main type of publication, followed by books and book chapters. Formal education has been the preferential focus of the literature on GEL in Portugal (n= 38), especially through the publication of academic articles reporting classroom interventions and books with pedagogical resources and/or guidelines for practice. This could be attributed to recent policy reforms defining students’ expected profile and reintroducing citizenship issues in the curriculum (Ministry of Education, 2017). GEL has also a growing presence in teacher education (n=19) and is often a topic addressed in pre-service teachers’ classroom projects during their practicum. This is visible in the relevant number of master dissertations published between 2010-2020 (n=48), exploring the integration of GEL themes (e.g., sustainability and diversity) in formal education contexts. In fact, research on teacher education in Portugal suggests that teachers are generally open to GE. Yet, they consider it too vague and complex, demanding support on appropriate teaching and assessment methods and better subject knowledge (Lourenço, 2021). This is aligned with recent policy documents calling for a need to “develop adequate structures of support for educators” to “bridge the gap between the willingness to integrate Global Education, and the confidence, skills, competencies and support to do so” (GENE, 2022:4-5). In short, together with a strengthened scientific debate, these data evidence the vitality of GEL in Portugal, as well as the need to further the discussion on teacher education.


ANGEL (2020). Global Education Digest 2020. DERC. ANGEL (2021). Global Education Digest 2021. DERC. ANGEL (2022). Global Education Digest 2022. DERC. Coelho, D.P., Caramelo, J., & Menezes, I. (2019). Mapping the field of Development Education in Portugal: narratives and challenges in a de/post/colonial context. Journal of Social Science Education, 18(2). GENE (2022). The European Declaration on Global Education to 2050. Lourenço, M. (2021). From caterpillars to butterflies: Exploring pre-service teachers’ transformations while navigating global citizenship education. Frontiers in Education, 6. Ministry of Education (2017). National Strategy for Citizenship Education. O’Loughlin, E., & Wegimont, L. (Eds.). (2014). Global Education in Portugal. The European Global Education Peer Review Process. GENE. Resolução do Conselho de Ministros n. 94/2018. National Strategy for Development Education 2018-2022.

From Intercultural Education to Global Citizenship Education: An Analysis of Italian Scientific Literature

Carla Inguaggiato (University of Bologna), Raffaella Faggioli (University of Bologna)

This paper explores the publications on Global Education and Learning (GEL) from 2012 to 2021 included in the Italian chapters of Multilingual Global Education Digest (Faggioli & Locatelli, 2020; Faggioli & Inguaggiato, 2021; Vittori et al, 2022). The analysis aims to understand the evolution of GEL conceptualization and connect to international, European and national key policy events. The preliminary results suggest that GEL faces several challenges to embed into the Italian pedagogical context compared to other European countries. In Italy GEL is rooted in two main educational approaches: a) intercultural education, b) education for international cooperation or development education. In earlier period, the main scientific contributions on GEL in Italian are developed from studies on the inclusion of students with migrant background (Catarci et al., 2020; Fiorucci, 2017; Loiodice, 2020; Premoli, 2008; Santerini, 2010; Surian, 2019; Tarozzi, 2003, 2005, 2008b, 2015). There were fewer publications on studies and research on international cooperation and development education, which remains a topic more related to the work of NGOs and development cooperation activities. This dual nature of GEL emerges also from the analysis of the scientific literature dedicated to formal education. GEL is mentioned since the 2012 in ministerial guidelines (National Indications for Pre-school and First Cycle of Education, 2012), however it still remains marginal in the school curricula (Franch, 2020). The development observed in school educational practices (and consequently described in publications) strongly relates to the work of NGOs and the intertwining of NGOs and schools (Tarozzi Inguaggiato, 2018; Tarozzi, 2020, Damiani, 2020). In 2018, the Italian Strategy for GCE was adopted as a result of a collaborative work of NGOs, local authorities and some universities (Surian, 2019, Franch, 2020)). In 2020 and 2021, the growth of GEL publications seems to relate to Sustainable Development Goals Agenda and the introduction of compulsory civic education in the first and second cycle of education (Law 92/2019). Understanding the interconnections between GEL publications and implementation into educational practices can contribute to identify elements that favor and hamper integration of this educational approach into the formal and non-formal education in Italy.


Fiorucci, M. (2017). Educare alla cittadinanza globale in una prospettiva interculturale. In G. Crescenza & A. Volpicella (Ed.), Una bussola per la scuola. (69–90). Edizione Conoscenza. Damiani, V. (2020). Educating Pre-Service Teachers on Global Citizenship: Research Perspectives from a Preliminary Study in the Italian context. Journal of Social Science Education, 19(4): 23-44. Franch, S. (2020). Global citizenship education discourses in a province in northern Italy. International Journal of Development Education and Global Learning, 12 (1): 21–36. Premoli, S. (2008). Pedagogie per un mondo globale. Culture, panorami dell’educazione, prospettive. Torino: EGA. Surian, A. (2019). I recenti orientamenti sull’Educazione alla Cittadinanza Globale. RicercAzione, 11(1): 117–135. Tarozzi, M. (2017). Educare alla cittadinanza globale, fra crisi del multiculturalismo e nuovi bisogni di equità. In I. Loiodice & S. Ulivieri (Ed.), Per un nuovo patto di solidarietà. Il ruolo della pedagogia nella costruzione dei percorsi identitari, spazi di cittadinanza e dialoghi interculturali (221–230). Progedid. Tarozzi, M., & Inguaggiato, C. (2018). Implementing global citizenship education in EU primary schools: The role of government ministries. International Journal of Development Education and Global Learning, 10(1): 21–38. Tarozzi, M., & Torres, C. A. (2016). Global Citizenship Education and the Crises of Multiculturalism. London: Bloomsbury

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