In sub-project 5.1 READI is supporting the ASEAN Secretariat’s Education, Youth and Training Division on behalf of the ASEAN Senior Officials Meeting on Education (SOM-ED). The purpose of this cooperation is to compile a “Study on Education Systems and Policies in ASEAN”.

At the Informal ASEAN Education Ministers Meeting (Informal ASED) held on 17 July 2011 in Bali, the previous Secretary-General of ASEAN, Dr. Surin Pitsuwan shared that in every sector in ASEAN leaders had the benefit of receiving regular overview of developments and expressed the desire that ASEAN also produce a study on education systems and policies in ASEAN on a biennial basis. In the Inaugural Speech of H.E. Le Luong Minh on 9 January 2013, the current Secretary-General of ASEAN referred to education as the most effective way to move out the poverty trap and narrowing development gap.

ASEAN Education Ministers – through ASEAN Senior Official Meeting on Education (SOM-ED) – support this desire to have a first assessment of educational systems and policies in ASEAN in the framework of the strategic objectives and indicators provided by the ASCC Blueprint and the ASEAN 5-year Work Plan on Education. This assessment may then influence decisions made at both the policy and programme levels by ASEAN member states and ASEAN itself. 

The EU is supporting this “Study on Education Systems and Policies in ASEAN” because of the wealth of educational experience of the EU countries. This will help ASEAN to assess its own educational landscape vis-à-vis EU-adopted benchmarked standards and assessments, within which they can prepare students for success in schools and the workplace, as well as to prepare them to make active contribution in the ASEAN community building process. Specifically, ASEAN will draw on the EU’s experiences from the Bologna process in developing a life-long learning framework, enhancing mobility in higher education, and improving quality assurance systems. The European Commission’s DG for Education and Culture has further proposed the “Tuning Educational Structures in Europe” initiative as relevant for ASEAN.

The sub-project serves two purposes: To produce a “Study on Education Systems and Policies in ASEAN” that will assess the progress in education in ASEAN, share best practices and point to possible cooperation initiatives with Dialogue Partners relevant to the ASEAN Community Building process. In a second step the study shall serve as a platform on which ASEAN and EU policymakers could engage in a policy dialogue to exchange best practices and exchange information on regional developments in education.

Expected results (outputs)

The output will be a “Study on Education Systems and Policies in ASEAN” that will:

  • stocktake ASEAN’s initiatives and chart progress in education in ASEAN against the strategic objectives and indicators provided by the ASCC Blueprint and the ASEAN 5-year Work Plan on Education;
  • provide, for the first time, ASEAN-wide quantitative data and qualitative analysis of primary, secondary, tertiary, and vocational education, and thereby
  • provide a first-ever benchmark against which the ‘health’ and performance of the education sector can be monitored over time.

Expected impact (outcomes)

  • The study will contribute significantly to the quality of information available to national policymakers in ASEAN;
  • The study will lay the basis for a potential policy dialogue between ASEAN and EU with a focus on regional mobility, lifelong learning, MRA and quality assurance in education.
  • The results of the study will further stimulate regional cooperation in education in ASEAN.


The sub-project is structured in four consecutive activities: Activity 5.1.1 kicks off with a workshop of an ASEAN working group on education and the team of experts to outline the Study’s contents and guide the team of experts in the following steps. Activity 5.1.2 centres on the work of the team of experts in collecting and analysing education data and drafting the Study. Activity 5.1.3 will again see a workshop of the ASEAN working group on education and the team of experts to finalise the Study, which will be produced and presented under Activity 5.1.4.

Two senior short-term experts are contracted to formulate the study with the support of the ASEAN Secretariat and relevant education agencies. The entire project is planned for a six-month period, with the preparation work starting in May 2013 and publication of the study itself in late 2013.


READI is implemented on behalf of the EU and ASEAN by a consortium of firms led by Altair Asesores.
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