Ana Larcher Carvalho[1]Research and Evaluation at GENE. & Liam Wegimont[2]Director of GENE.


This paper, developed from the perspective of GENE, explores the effects of international policy on Global Education, with a specific focus on the European Declaration on Global Education to 2050, also known as the Dublin Declaration. It starts with an overview of the Declaration’s development process and content and reflects on the central concepts of the Declaration. It then conducts a preliminary analysis of some of the effects of the Declaration, drawing on insights from the ongoing national-level follow-up process. It reflects on changes in agendas, policies, and practices, and in stakeholder relationships. The paper concludes by highlighting the necessary efforts to realise the Dublin Declaration’s promises and its potential role in redefining European education and advancing global social justice.

Keywords: Dublin Declaration; Peer Learning; International Policy; Evaluation; Global Education.

1. Introduction

Numerous international policy frameworks[3]See section 4 of this paper. acknowledge the pivotal role of Global Education in shaping the learning experiences of 21st-century global citizens. These policy frameworks, along with the 2002 Maastricht Declaration on Global Education, which laid the groundwork for the European Declaration on Global Education to 2050, have exerted a profound influence on the development of Global Education. Consequently, it is imperative to examine them in order to gain insights into their effects on the field of Global Education and their contribution to achieving a more just and peaceful world, particularly in light of the challenges our societies currently confront[4]Recognising the importance of this topic, four European journals focused on development education (DE) and global learning (GL) launched in 2020 a collaborative call for articles on the Policy … Continue a ler.

This paper[5]This paper was produced within the context of the roundtable on “Development and Global Citizenship Education and public policy” that took place at the international meeting “Education, … Continue a ler reflects on the effects of international policy frameworks underpinning Global Education (GE) in Europe with a focus on the European Declaration on Global Education to 2050, also known as the Dublin Declaration, which was adopted in 2022 as a strategy framework for improving and increasing Global Education in Europe to 2050[6]We would like to acknowledge the significant contributions of all organizations participating in GENE, whose commitment to peer sharing and learning has been instrumental in advancing the production … Continue a ler (GENE, 2022).

The Dublin Declaration is founded in a vision of education with the power to bring about a world of global social justice, peace, international solidarity, sustainability and international understanding all grounded in the fundamental respect of human rights for all. Global Education seeks to foster a deeper understanding of the complexity and interconnectedness of global issues and injustices that confront our societies, based on the recognition of underlying global power dynamics, historical heritage, including the legacies of colonialism, and geopolitical and economic structures and relationships at the root of global problems. Global Education advocates for pedagogical practices that prioritize participation, learner centred approaches, and the development of critical thinking, skills and competencies, attitudes, and values essential for informed and self-reflective action. Ultimately, Global Education aims to inspire and empower people, individually and collectively, to imagine, hope and act for social, economic and ecological transformation.

The Dublin Declaration was drafted in consultation with Ministries and Agencies of Foreign Affairs and Education from across Europe, along with several stakeholder groups, and the process was facilitated by GENE. GENE is a network of Ministries and Agencies across Europe with national responsibility for Global Education[7]GENE membership comprises representatives from European Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Education, along with their affiliated agencies responsible for shaping policies, allocating funds, and … Continue a ler and the essence of its approach lies in bringing together policymakers, facilitating the sharing of national experiences and insights, and fostering mutual learning on policy matters related to Global Education. At its core, GENE’s goal is to work towards a future in which every individual in Europe, in solidarity with peoples worldwide, enjoys access to quality Global Education. The Dublin Declaration now serves as the foundational document, offering the conceptual framework, political consensus, and strategic commitment necessary for the progressive realisation of this vision.

This analysis is based on the viewpoint of GENE reflecting upon lessons learned from the implementation of previous strategies, considering the opportunities created by the Dublin Declaration at both national and international levels, and assessing what will be needed in the coming years to fulfil the commitments outlined in the Declaration. The reflective process began with an in-depth examination of the Declaration, focusing on its central ideas and concepts.

2. The European Declaration on Global Education to 2050: the process and its central ideas

The Dublin Declaration emerged two decades after the Maastricht Declaration on Global Education (Council of Europe and GENE, 2002), which not only offered a definition of Global Education but also served as a foundational document influencing numerous initiatives in the field across Europe.

While the Maastricht Declaration played a crucial role in the evolution of Global Education in Europe, the necessity for revision arose for several reasons. Profound global and European transformations have given rise to new challenges that directly affect Global Education. These challenges include the ascent of populism and threats to democracy, a surge in racism and xenophobia, ongoing conflicts and wars, escalating inequalities, a rise in social injustice; and also challenges in the education and foreign policy landscapes.

Additionally, important new concepts related to Global Education had emerged since Maastricht, necessitating their inclusion in a new framework. The process of developing a new Declaration also aimed at refining and delving deeper into certain topics outlined in the Maastricht Declaration. This process involved a thorough examination of the context and analysis of new ideas and concepts, as well as achievements and lessons learned in the last decades of Global Education policy and practice.

2.1 The Process

An important aspect of the European Declaration on Global Education to 2050 was the development process, which took 18-months, lasting from June 2021 to November 2022. The process was consciously designed based on research regarding similar processes, and consisted in an interactive, iterative and participatory process, involving hundreds of stakeholders and interested parties from Europe and worldwide (Seiffert, 2023).

It was led by policymakers forming a drafting committee with representatives from eight countries led by Ireland and Luxembourg working in a very collaborative process with GENE member states representatives and facilitated by the GENE Secretariat. While the process was clearly led by the policymakers, it was also distinguished by its collaboration with various interest groups during the drafting of the Declaration. Consultation groups were established encompassing key stakeholders, in structured streams, led by umbrella organisations, but involving other dedicated organisations. These included youth organisations, development NGOs and other civil society organisations, Local and Regional governments, International Organisations, researchers and Global Critical friends (a group of over 40 experts from various regions of the world). This process yielded very rich inputs for the Declaration and careful attention was given by the Secretariat and the Drafting Committee to analysing and incorporating the central concerns of each stakeholder group.

Every such process involves debate, disagreement and “pinch-points” on the road to achieve consensus in language, vision, and commitment. Nevertheless, gathering diverse political perspectives and positions, and ensuring that the voices and experience of stakeholders featured strongly in the drafting process, a shared vision on fundamental principles was attained. Ultimately, the various groups involved explicitly expressed the view, individually and collectively, that their perspectives had largely been considered and accurately reflected in the final Declaration.

Consequently, the final document articulates a long-term vision for Global Education that reflects the concerns and aspirations of a broad range of stakeholders. It puts forward a complex vision that integrates various perspectives on the problems we face as a society and creates a strategic framework on how Global Education can help tackle them and contribute to building a fairer world. This is one of the key factors enabling the substantial support the Declaration is receiving.

2.2 The structure of the Dublin Declaration

The Dublin Declaration is a Strategy Framework for Global Education in Europe – it provides a framework for the development of national and sector-specific strategies and policies in the field. It starts with an analysis of the prevailing context to identify the complexity of challenges and crises and explores the significance of education in this context. The Declaration defines a joint vision for a fairer world, providing justification for the necessity and right to Global Education. It puts forth a renewed definition of Global Education and highlights the progress achieved in this field over the past two decades, emphasising the need to build upon it. The Dublin Declaration also outlines a series of commitments at both national and international levels and establishes mechanisms for monitoring and evaluating progress.

2.3 The Definition of Global Education

The Dublin Declaration builds on the Maastricht Declaration and on several subsequent processes, concepts and dynamics, and proposes a renewed and more complex definition. While retaining the Maastricht Declaration’s focus on promoting critical reflection and opening eyes and minds to the reality of the world, the Dublin Declaration defines Global Education as an education that also opens hearts. While keeping at its core the concepts of justice, equity and human rights, it details and deepens them by including social and climate justice, peace, solidarity, equity and equality, planetary sustainability, and international understanding. The definition underscores the importance of respecting human rights, embracing diversity, inclusion, and a decent life for all, both in the present and in the future.

The definition of Global Education in the Dublin Declaration brings together various concepts under the umbrella concept of Global Education[8]Global Education is an intersectional umbrella term which encompasses inter alia: Anti-Racist Education, Development Education, Diversity and Inclusion Education, Education for Gender Equality, … Continue a ler. Bringing together different concepts in such a way is intended to ensure greater policy effect. The strength of the Dublin Declaration lies in its insistence on the need to unite a variety of concepts under one umbrella, under a common and comprehensive understanding of Global Education. Simultaneously, it recognises the relationship with other concepts and the richness of various traditions and different national uses. It advocates not for overshadowing nor synthesising differing national concepts, but rather for joining forces to amplify their transformative power. This approach promotes coherence, fostering policy learning and peer collaboration while discouraging operating in isolated silos, with a view to achieve a more impactful collective effect.

2.4 Central Ideas and Concepts

The Dublin Declaration introduces new ideas and concepts and reinforces existing ones that capture the central issues and challenges in our societies. It outlines the understandings of how to address them from a Global Education perspective, emphasising several core concepts of Global Education:

  • Core values – Placing justice, solidarity and human rights at the centre of education systems (through curriculum and learning system reforms).
  • Understanding the interconnectedness and root causes of inequalities – It explicitly promotes the need to ensure an understanding of the deep causes of local and global inequalities and their interdependence, taking into account the historical and geopolitical contexts. It advocates for an understanding of how global power relations, including the enduring legacies of colonialism and current geopolitical and economic structures, influence global problems.
  • Emancipatory pedagogical practices – Promoting inclusive and participatory methods that consider the variety of ways in which people learn and enable critical thinking. It focuses on students’ acquisition of skills to deal with complexity and uncertainty, to respond to crises and threats to peace. This involves fostering critical reflection on the world and our place in it and historical awareness. It also encourages an education that enables the acquisition of the skills required to understand and appreciate the richness of different cultures and encourages integrating perspectives and knowledge and voices from outside Europe.
  • Promoting inclusion and diversity – Global Education values the active engagement from a broad spectrum of stakeholders, including peoples’ movements, civil society organizations, diaspora communities, and marginalised and vulnerable groups, all working together to co-create just and sustainable solutions. This involves including marginalised communities and groups in dialogue and cooperation in the processes of Global Education and promoting a Global Education that contributes to a more inclusive world.
  • Inspiring hope – Explicitly emphasising the importance of hope and imagination in Global Education.
  • Transformative learning – Viewing education as a transformative learning process that empowers students to transform themselves, the world and education itself. This involves empowering people to take action for social, economic, and ecological transformation in view of changing the conditions that generate poverty, exclusion and inequalities. It involves an education that facilitates intercultural understanding, combats racism and xenophobia, promotes processes that foster gender equality in education and society, and empowers individuals to address issues such as the deprivation of basic human rights and the repercussions of war.
  • Transforming education systems – In formal education, it emphasises the transformation of the various dimensions of the education system, whole-of-school approaches, teacher/educator training; from pre-school to university. It also strongly emphasises education beyond formal education, and the promotion of the right to lifelong and life-wide education.
  • Raising public awareness – Encouraging public awareness and understanding of local and global issues. This involves promoting critical engagement with the issues and recognising their relevance to their own lives and the societal well-being.
2.5 The Commitments

The commitments outlined in the Declaration aim to advance Global Education through various strategies both at national and international levels.

At the national level, these commitments include improving the policy environment for Global Education and providing adequate, accessible and, where possible, predictable resourcing for Global Education. They include also supporting Civil Society Organizations and key stakeholders recognising their expertise in the field of Global Education and providing more support to educators. The Declaration commits to ensuring the inclusion of marginalised communities and groups in the process of Global Education and reaching out to new sectors including the private sector, supporting policy relevant research and developing appropriate monitoring and evaluation mechanisms. Commitments were also made to support international networking among policymakers.

At the international level, commitments were made to develop and strengthen a universal, rights-based approach to Global Education in Europe, in dialogue with peers and colleagues from other regions. Commitments involve supporting coordination across different levels including pan-European and international levels and securing adequate and accessible funding at pan-European level. Furthermore, commitments involved supporting sector-wide coordination networks and facilitating networking and namely supporting the work of GENE. In terms of research, commitments were made to strengthen the European Global Education Peer Review process, the State of Global Education in Europe, among others and to develop a clear monitoring framework.

Overall, these commitments represent a collective effort to advancing Global Education with a shared vision and cooperative efforts.

3. What have we learnt from previous strategies and experiences?

Over the past two decades, we have witnessed gradual yet consistent progress in the Global Education field. However, this progress has not been linear; rather, change in Global Education has been characterised by progress and setbacks, often taking two steps forward and one step back. We have equally learnt that progress lies in the individuals, their collective capacity, and the establishment of a common language as well as in the organisational and political contexts in which they are embedded.

The significance of a common language cannot be overstated; it serves as the cornerstone for bringing people together and joining forces across diverse issues, approaches, and perspectives. One of the strengths of the Dublin Declaration, in alignment with the learnings from the Maastricht Declaration, “is the insistence that, while recognising varied traditions and differing national usages, there is also a need to bring a variety of concepts together under a common, comprehensive understanding” (Wegimont, 2023, p. 5). This is one of the lessons learnt since Maastricht, that this approach gives greater power to all national concepts, promotes coherence, making it possible to define and reinforce a common European vision of Global Education, enables mutual learning about policies, prevents isolation and thus achieve greater impact.

The adoption of “Global Education” as a shared language has proven instrumental. This common terminology facilitates the development of national strategies, enables comparative analysis, promotes policy learning, and mitigates the isolation inherent in competing types of local and global justice education. Its strategic utility extends beyond national boundaries, making a positive impact at both the national and European levels.

4. Assessing the Effects of International Policy

In light of the myriad international policy frameworks that influence Global Education, it becomes essential to scrutinize their roles and effects. Prominent among these are Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goal 4, emphasizing Quality Education, especially under target 4.7. Further, there are several frameworks focused on Global Citizenship Education and Education for Sustainable Development, as detailed by UNECE (2005, 2011), UNESCO (2015, 2020, 2022), and the UfM (2014). Additionally, the North-South Centre of the Council of Europe’s 2019 revision of Global Education Guidelines is noteworthy. Of critical importance is also the revised 1974 UNESCO Recommendation on education for international understanding, cooperation, and peace (Recommendation on Education for Peace, Human Rights and Sustainable Development, UNESCO, 2023). At the EU level, various policy documents are pivotal, including the 2022 Council Conclusions that underscore the transformative role of Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship in achieving the SDGs.

Analysing these frameworks is vital for understanding their impact on Global Education and their role in fostering a more equitable and peaceful world, especially in the context of current societal challenges. This analysis focuses on assessing the effects of the Dublin Declaration but it can set the groundwork for a more comprehensive examination of of the broader policy environment.

Identifying the changes produced by an international policy can be quite complex and there are several possible approaches. This analysis has followed the approach of Oliver and Parolin (2018). Their approach is based on “contribution mapping (Kok et al., 2012; Morton et al., 2015), in which a new policy is followed over time, and impacts are identified through interviews, documentary analysis, or other multi-modal means” (Oliver & Parolin, 2018).

The authors, in their methodological approach, start by establishing a typology of effects, identifying domains on which policy may cause changes, which are subsequently explored in greater detail. Following this analytical method, we have developed a typology of effects, drawing from Oliver and Parolin’s framework, and supplementing it with insights derived from research on Global Education in Europe (O’Loughin, 2012, Hartmeyer & Wegimont, 2016, and GENE, 2019, along with the specific national and international commitments articulated in the Declaration). This framework will be the basis to explore the types of contributions of the Dublin Declaration to Global Education.

This paper does not aim to provide a comprehensive policy assessment of the Dublin Declaration – it is too early to do so. Instead, its purpose is to offer initial reflections on how to follow up its impact by developing a policy effects framework and collecting preliminary data. The table below provides a brief overview of possible policy effects which might be assessed in the coming years, in line with the content of the Declaration.

Policy effects framework:

Category Specific Changes/Actions
Changes in the Policy Environment Agenda setting: change or influencing agendas of government and other bodies.

Policy change and policy development: increasing emphasis on GE in existing policy and policy coherence.

Integrating and strengthening the GE/DEAR dimensions of existing international frameworks.

National Strategy development and/strengthening.

Strengthening inter-ministerial Cooperation.

Increased cooperation at European and international levels to ensure policy coherence within European Institutions and International Organizations.

Changes on Procedures and Practices Changes in national funding mechanisms and increase in funding levels and predictability of funding at international and national levels.

Changes in evaluation methods and practices: development of methods more appropriate to Global Education.

Changes in the Education Sector Strengthen GE in formal, informal and non-formal, lifelong and life-wide education.

Strengthen Global Education in curriculum development and reform.

Strengthen Global Education in teacher education, student assessment, whole-school approaches, school leadership, and self evaluation processes and school inspectorate training, early childhood education, and care and in non-formal education across various sectors.

Enable the acquisition of necessary learning, critical thinking, skills and competencies, attitudes, and values, to understand global problems, their interdependencies and root causes and empower people to take action.

Promote participatory learning methods.

Changes in Interactions with Stakeholders Continue support for networking between policy makers to ensure continuous improvement in Global Education policy and practice.

Increasing support for networking and cooperation between diverse stakeholders namely Global Education focused civil society organizations, youth, adult and community organizations, people’s movements, diaspora organizations and local and regional governments.

Develop partnerships with new sectors including the private sector.

Seek the Inclusion of marginalized communities and groups in the process of Global Education.

Production of New Knowledge Increase peer learning.

Increased support and interest for research in Global Education to enable research-informed policy.

Support innovation in Global Education.

Increased support for critical dialogue with colleagues from other regions.

Continue to strengthen the European Peer Review process, the State of Global Education and other quality improvement mechanisms.

Creating Capacity Develop structures of support for educators.
Changing Opinions and Attitudes Greater reflection on key ideas and concepts reflected in the Dublin Declaration.

Greater reflection on and more critical approaches to Global Education, with due attention to questions of historical legacy and global power dynamics, including the decolonization of curricula.

Promotion of Inclusion at Various Levels Increased efforts on including voices, perspectives, concepts from other regions, including the Global South.

Greater focus on Leave no one behind, to reach all people in every country in Europe: reaching out to those neglected by current education systems.

Table 1 – Global Education Policy Effects Framework.

5. Following the effects of the Dublin Declaration at National and International levels

Just as the Maastricht Declaration had profound impacts on Global Education, the Dublin Declaration holds the potential to play a central role in promoting Global Education through multiple channels.

GENE has been working with several countries and conducting a follow up of the effects of the Declaration and, though it is still early stages, several areas of change have been identified. This work will continue over time to provide a more complete picture of these effects. The effects will be identified through the continuous work of GENE with its member countries, the national reports that countries do biannually, analysis of policies and other documents, participation in policy processes, conferences and others and most importantly through the monitoring mechanism embedded in the Dublin Declaration[9]See appendix 2 of the Dublin Declaration.. In this paper we are using a broad approach to make a preliminary mapping of the effects and changes resulting from the Dublin Declaration.

5.1 Changes in the Policy Environment

5.1.1 Agenda Setting: Greater international recognition for Global Education and greater coordination at international level

The Dublin Declaration has already given greater recognition to Global Education at international level. It contributed to strengthening the place of Global Education on the political agenda. Here are two examples of the recognition of the importance of the Dublin Declaration and of Global Education by international organisations for greater synergies.

At a meeting last year of the OECD’s Donor Coordination Group, one representative suggested, with reference to the Dublin Declaration, that the potential for Global Education provided by the Declaration was one of the most powerful strategies available to combat the hollowing out of civic space, which is one of the NGO’s central concerns in current times.

At a recent meeting gathering the UNECE, UNESCO and the European Commission to discuss Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and Global Citizenship Education, a session was organised to discuss the possibilities offered by the Dublin Declaration to strengthen synergies between international organisations in the field of Global Education. The Declaration was publicly welcomed and engaged with by key figures from both organisations as providing a pathway to coherence with their own current important strategies, the UNECE inter-ministerial strategy on ESD, and the UNESCO 1974 Recommendation revision process.

Greater recognition of Global Education at international level could lead to greater coherence and coordination with international organisations. And this coordination and greater coherence of approach is precisely one of the points that the Dublin Declaration wants to encourage.

5.1.2 Agenda Setting: Resurgence of Political and Strategic Support and Policy Change

Since the adoption of the Dublin Declaration in late 2022, there has been a notable resurgence of political and strategic support for Global Education across various countries in Europe. Latvia Ministry of Education officials at the highest level have indicated that the Dublin Declaration has led to a “renaissance” of Global Education in Latvia:

“We see the Dublin Declaration as… providing practical impetus for implementation of curriculum reform… and also heralding a renaissance in Global Education”.

This resurgence is evident in the development and integration of Global Education into public policies, and in other processes such as the inclusion of Global Education in curriculums and the strengthening of inter-ministerial cooperation. These processes often reference the principles of the Declaration.

A notable trend is the renewed interest on developing or revising Global Education national strategies in various countries. The influence of the Declaration is significant in these processes, as it serves as a key reference for shaping these national strategies. Following up on these national-level developments, often involving stakeholder workshops and discussions, reveals common elements linked to the Dublin Declaration. Such strategies often prioritize enhanced cooperation between different actors, sector-by-sector capacity building, and inclusion of marginalised and vulnerable communities. Additionally, they highlight the importance of historical awareness and critical examinations of global historical and geopolitical relationships, particularly in terms of the legacies of colonialism and wars.

In Slovakia, during the process of development of the new national strategy, a senior official noted that the country’s new strategy is among the first in Europe to align with the Dublin Declaration on Global Education through 2050. She emphasized the critical need to foster values and attitudes centered on solidarity, equality, justice, openness, and critical thinking to tackle the fundamental issues underlying current global challenges.

In addition to developing national strategies, a significant number of countries have initiated various actions to inform future strategy developments.

Some countries are completing comprehensive reviews, namely mapping processes and peer reviews. Latvia, for instance, is currently in the process of a Peer Review of Global Education facilitated by GENE and involving Ireland and Cyprus.

Other countries are organizing coordinating meetings to strengthen policymaker engagement and follow up on the Declaration’s principles or initiating initiatives to structurally anchor Global Education in various administrative levels and structures. The Dublin declaration was recognised by policymakers as giving a new impetus to these processes.

Additionally, the Declaration has been translated into nine languages, Czech, Estonian, French, Latvian, Montenegrin, Polish, Portuguese, Slovak, and Spanish, with more translations in progress, indicating its widespread influence and applicability.

5.2 Changes in Procedures and Practices

5.2.1 Changes in Funding Mechanisms

Several countries have noted that they will integrate the principles of the Declaration into the design of funding mechanisms at the level of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and in calls for proposals for Global Education projects for Civil Society Organizations. This may include prioritizing initiatives that promote inclusivity and reach marginalized communities or those that foster understanding and respect for diversity. It may also include the revision of the planning and evaluation requirements.

5.2.2 Changes in Evaluation Procedures

There are also significant developments in the evaluation procedures within the context of Global Education. Several countries are adopting the principles outlined in the Declaration to provide structured approaches to establish priorities and assess progress in Global Education projects.

Other countries are actively developing new planning and evaluation frameworks for Global Education programmes that allows space for more reflection and a better understanding on the effects of Global Education and for increased learning and improvement, without creating an administrative burden to the organisations.

These initiatives underscore a commitment to improving evaluation methodologies, aligning them with the commitments articulated in the Dublin Declaration which advocates for the development of appropriate monitoring and evaluation mechanisms that are relevant and appropriate to Global Education.

5.3 Changes in the Education Sector

5.3.1 Integration into the Curriculum

The influence of the Declaration is evident in the efforts to improve the implementation of Global Education in new curricula. This includes using the Declaration as a catalyst for placing Global Education at the core of curriculum implementation and teacher education programs. This is the case of Latvia, where the Dublin Declaration is seen as providing the impetus to put Global Education at the heart of the implementation of the new curriculum, through in-service teacher education.

Efforts are underway in several other countries to integrate Global Education into current curriculum reforms and teacher training programs. Some countries report the use of the principles of the Declaration in the development of competence models.

Other countries are developing toolkits for use in schools educational and non-formal learning spaces to share the vision of the Dublin Declaration.

5.4 Greater Collaboration Between Stakeholders

The Declaration promotes inter-ministerial cooperation and emphasizes dialogue, coordination between stakeholders, networking, and political learning around Global Education. Several countries are using the Declaration to renew and strengthen inter-ministerial cooperation and involve a wider array of stakeholders in the dialogue on Global Education. In particular, efforts are being made to engage youth and the business community.

One example is the event organized in 2023 by the Czech Forum for Development Cooperation (FoRS) to bring together CSO representatives, policymakers, academia and other interested parties to discuss the “Dublin Declaration implementation: Strengthening the dialogue between civil society and policy makers in Central Europe”.

The Declaration has inspired a variety of regional and global efforts, originating from the Global Critical Friends group that supported the Declaration’s process. As a result of this collaboration, initiatives are being spearheaded by representatives in Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America to reinforce Global Education. This has led to the formation of an Asia-Pacific Network, an African Global Education Working Group, and has informed an Ibero-American initiative. This latter process involves several Latin American countries that are in the process of crafting their individual national strategies (GENE 2023).

5.5 Production of New Knowledge: effects on research

The Dublin Declaration gave an impetus to the development of several research events and reports on research on Global Education. One example is the 2023 ANGEL Global Education Paris Conference held in partnership with UNESCO (ANGEL, 2023), where one of the objectives of the conference was to facilitate a reflection about the research implications of the Dublin Declaration.

Notably, Enabel, Belgium´s agency for development cooperation, launched in 2023 a centre for expertise in Global Citizenship Education, BeGlobal, considered a laboratory of research, ideas and practices, building on the work of several years. Their 2023 magazine was dedicated to exploring the significance of the Dublin Declaration in advancing Global Education in Europe (Enabel, 2023).

6. What actions are essential to realise the promise of the Declaration?

To realise the promise of the Dublin Declaration, it is crucial that each country forges its own path, building on progress and achievements in Global Education and with consideration to the specific national context and dynamics. The Dublin Declaration is not an action plan, it is a strategic framework, as indicated by its subtitle; nevertheless, it is clearly serving as a guiding light, an inspiration and impetus that supports the objective of providing more and better Global Education.

The Dublin Declaration outlines a shared vision of Global Education that can guide country efforts and establishes a series of commitments at national and international level required to realise this vision. Countries can draw on networks such as GENE, which actively works country by country and sector by sector, to access the support they require to move forward. Peer-to-peer networking and learning and collaborative international work also play a pivotal role in improving Global Education at national level.

Moreover, to fulfil the promise of the Declaration, it is imperative to address, sustain, and strengthen key dimensions at both national and international levels, including ongoing efforts to improve the policy landscape for Global Education, ensure reliable funding, promote coordination across diverse levels and stakeholders, support civil society and various organisations, as well as educators, implement inclusive strategies that leave no one behind, strengthen the links between policymaking and research, foster networking and policy learning processes among policymakers, civil society organisations, and colleagues from different regions, while also investing in evaluation and quality frameworks.

In conclusion, a country-by-country approach in tandem with a stakeholder-by-stakeholder stream continuation of dialogue, and a continuation of combined efforts with other international organisations can, and already is, effectively translating the Dublin Declaration into tangible advancements for Global Education.


This paper has analysed the impact of international policy on Global Education, with a specific focus on the transformative potential of the European Declaration on Global Education to 2050, known as the Dublin Declaration. Through an analysis of its preliminary effects, this study has shed light on the tangible changes brought about by the Declaration at both national and international levels.

The Dublin Declaration holds the potential to redefine education in Europe, instilling a new cosmopolitan, solidarity-driven orientation with a focus on rights, thereby contributing to global justice (Seiffert, 2020). It emphasises the pivotal role of Global Education and may become a cornerstone in fortifying the transformative power of education and facilitating the overall transformation of Education.

Despite the significant potential outlined, there are persistent challenges and threats confronting Global Education, including threats to democracy, rising of hate speech and populism, polarisation, intolerance, rise of racism and xenophobia, and various forms of discrimination and social injustice, that can lead to setbacks in what was achieved in Global Education.

However, this paper highlights that there are encouraging reasons to be hopeful about progress in Global Education and about its capacity to steer positive transformation in the world building on consistent progress over the past two decades, and on the resurgence of support for Global Education triggered by the adoption of the Dublin Declaration.

It is equally important to emphasize the important shifts in the policy environment over recent decades which have provided more solid support for Global Education (Wegimont, 2020). These changes include a strengthened recognition of the necessity for supporting Global Education at European Union level and, at international level, the development of key policy instruments by the United Nations and other international organizations. Furthermore, Global Education has experienced a surge in attention within the burgeoning field of research in Global Education and has benefited from a strong policy focus (ANGEL, 2020; Bourn, 2020).

These positive signs provide valid reasons for hope, encouraging us to educate towards imagining a better world and to learn how we can achieve it together. However, realising the promises outlined in the Dublin Declaration requires sustained efforts. To achieve its potential, a concerted and intensified effort at both national and international level is needed. The Declaration’s potential to redefine education in Europe and contribute to global justice hinges on continuous and persistent engagement, in depth analysis of context and societal change and reflection about Global problems from the lens of Global Education as well as a deep rooted and active commitment to inclusivity and leaving no one behind. It is equally important to monitor the Declaration as well as other key policy frameworks, namely the revised 1974 UNESCO Recommendation for a clearer understanding of their effects on the advancement of Global Education.

Finally, as emphasized by Doug Bourn at a Congress on Global Education in Lisbon 2018, staying critical is an imperative for the ongoing journey of Global Education: “Global Education must always maintain a counter-hegemonic stance and remain critical in its approach”. In this way, the Dublin Declaration serves not only as a roadmap for educational transformation but also as a catalyst for sustained critical engagement and societal change.


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1 Research and Evaluation at GENE.
2 Director of GENE.
3 See section 4 of this paper.
4 Recognising the importance of this topic, four European journals focused on development education (DE) and global learning (GL) launched in 2020 a collaborative call for articles on the Policy Environment for Development Education.
5 This paper was produced within the context of the roundtable on “Development and Global Citizenship Education and public policy” that took place at the international meeting “Education, Social Transformation and Global Citizenship: debates, paths, and meanings of the political” at the University of Porto in 2023. The roundtable discussed the relationships between policy and practice at different policy levels – European, national and Ibero-American. Global Education Network Europe (GENE) was invited to discuss the effects of international policy.
6 We would like to acknowledge the significant contributions of all organizations participating in GENE, whose commitment to peer sharing and learning has been instrumental in advancing the production of knowledge about Global Education in Europe. We also want to acknowledge Ethan Foley for his thorough review of the language in this paper.
7 GENE membership comprises representatives from European Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Education, along with their affiliated agencies responsible for shaping policies, allocating funds, and providing support in the field of Global Education. Established in 2001 with an initial presence in six countries, GENE has since expanded to encompass over 50 ministries and agencies from most European countries.
8 Global Education is an intersectional umbrella term which encompasses inter alia: Anti-Racist Education, Development Education, Diversity and Inclusion Education, Education for Gender Equality, Education for Global Citizenship and International Solidarity, Education for Sustainable Development; Global Citizenship Education, Global Development Education, Global Learning, Global Youth Work, Human Rights Education, Intercultural Education, Learning for Environmental Sustainability, Peace Education.
9 See appendix 2 of the Dublin Declaration.
[1]Research and Evaluation at GENE. & Liam Wegimont[2]Director of GENE. Abstract: This paper, developed from the perspective of GENE, explores the effects of international policy on Global Education, with a specific focus on the European Declaration on Global Education to 2050, also known as the Dublin Declaration." data-link="">

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1 Research and Evaluation at GENE.
2 Director of GENE.