Higher Education

Erasmus for all – new Education Programme of the European Union

Erasmus for All is the new EU programme for education, training, youth and sport proposed by the European Commission on 23 November 2011. The proposal is now under discussion by the Council (28 Member States) and the European Parliament who will take the final decision.

Erasmus for All would bring together all the current EU and international schemes for education, training, youth and sport, replacing seven existing programmes with one. This will increase efficiency, make it easier to apply for grants, as well as reducing duplication and fragmentation.

Up to 5 million people, almost twice as many as now, could get the chance to study or train abroad with a grant from Erasmus for All. Among them would be nearly 3 million higher education and vocational students. Full-time Masters' students would also benefit from a new loan guarantee scheme set up with the European Investment Bank Group.

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EU-Russia ties in the area of education have seen a steady expansion over the past couple of years. The Roadmap for the Fourth Common Space on Research, Education and Culture, agreed at the EU-Russia Summit in Moscow in May, 2005, lays out three main areas for cooperation:

  • Encouraging closer co-operation in the area of non-formal education;
  • Promoting the development of life skills education.
  • Making the European Higher Education Area a reality, in accordance with the principles of the Bologna Process (see below).

These objectives are realised through practical measures and projects including facilitating links between Russian and European universities; encouraging awards of joint or double diplomas; establishing quality monitoring systems for Russian curricula and institutions, as well as internal university quality-control systems; supporting Russian participation in the Erasmus Mundus programme; promoting EU studies in Russia (including training for government officials and post-graduate students and the establishment of the European Studies Institute at MGIMO); and promoting the study of Russia and the Russian language in the EU, as well as the study of the EU and European languages in Russia.

The Bologna Process

The aim of the Bologna Process is to establish a Europe-wide framework for higher education that will have a real impact of the lives on European citizens: individuals from participating countries will be able to move freely between higher education institutions, jobs, business sectors and countries. It will make students’ learning experience more adaptable to changing labour market demands, and increase the competitiveness of higher education systems in the European Higher Education Area. Russia joined the Bologna process in 2003.

The main principles of the Bologna Declaration , as signed by European Education Ministers on 19 June 1999 in Bologna, are to:

  • adopt a coherent system of easily readable and comparable degrees;
  • adopt a system with two main cycles (undergraduate/graduate);
  • establish a system of credits (such as ECTS);
  • overcome obstacles to student/teacher mobility;
  • promote European co-operation in quality assurance.

How can I get involved?

There are numerous opportunities for Russian professors, bachelor, specialist, master and PhD students and institutions to benefit from the increased EU-Russia cooperation on education. Details of how to participate in current programmes are given below.


Tempus strengthens cooperation in higher education between the European Union and its partner countries from the Western Balkans, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, the Mediterranean region and enhances understanding between cultures. Tempus promotes the "people to people" approach: its added value lies in its promotion of international and regional co-operation, which generates better communication and new networks of personal and professional contacts between the academic worlds of the EU and the partner countries.

Erasmus Mundus Joint Masters Courses

Russian students having already a higher education degree, be it bachelor, specialist or master degree obtained at a higher education institution licensed by the national authorities, can apply to Erasmus Mundus Masters' Courses to continue their study in Europe to obtain a Master degree from European Universities. Currently, the European Union is funding 138 Erasmus Mundus Masters' Courses and since 2004 more than 460 Russian students have been selected to study on Erasmus Mundus Master’s degree programmes in Europe. 60 Russian students have been selected to study on Erasmus Mundus Masters courses from September 2012.

Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctoral Courses

Russian students having already a master degree obtained at a higher education institution licensed by the national authorities can apply to Erasmus Mundus Doctoral Programmes to follow training and to carry out research in order to obtain a PhD degree from European Universities. This is a completely new programme. Since September 2009, Erasmus Mundus Doctoral Programmes are available for students to apply.

Erasmus Mundus Partnership

Russian students currently studying at a Russian higher education institution on a bachelor, specialist, master or PhD degree programme can obtain a scholarship to study for at least one semester in a European university. This type of mobility requires that Russian and European universities form a consortium and apply to the European Commission for funding. If funding from the EU is granted, the consortium of Russian and European universities select bachelor, specialist, masters and PhD students to study at the European partner university. At present the EU is funding 4 consortia of Russian and European universities. More than 2200 Russian students (bachelors, specialists, masters and PhD) have obtained the possibility to study in Europe. More information about the 4 consortia is available at the following websites:

1. ERANET-MUNDUS (Euro-Russian Academic Network – Mundus)

This consortium is lead by the University of Barcelona (Spain) and comprises the following Russian partner universities:

  • Russian State Hydrometeorological University (RSHU);
  • Siberian Federal University (SibFU);
  • South Ural State University (USU);
  • Lomonosov State Moscow University (MSU);
  • Demidov Yaroslavl State University (YSU);
  • Lobachevsky State University of Nizhniy Novgorod (UNN);
  • Saint Petersburg University (SpbU);
  • Pskov State Pedagogical University (PSPU).

2. Euro-Russian Academic Network Plus (ERANET Plus)

This consortium is lead by the University of Barcelona (Spain) and comprises the following Russian partner universities:

  • Lomonosov Moscow State University;
  • South Ural State University;
  • Saint Petersburg State University;
  • Siberian State University;
  • Russian State Hydrometeorological University;
  • Demidov Yaroslavl State University;
  • Pskov State Pedagogical University;
  • Lobachevsky Nizhniy Novgorod State University;
  • Moscow Linguistic State University.

3. This consortium is lead by the University of Turku (Finland) and comprises the following Russian partner universities:

  • Higher School of Economics;
  • Immanuel Kant State University of Russia;
  • Irkutsk State University;
  • Kazan (Volga Region) Federal University;
  • Petrozavodsk State University;
  • Russian State University for the Humanities;
  • St. Petersburg State University;
  • Udmurt State University;
  • Ural State University;
  • Yaroslavl-The-Wise Novgorod State University.

4. Aurora – Towards Modern and Innovative Higher Education

This consortium is lead by the University of Turku (Finland) and comprises the following Russian partner universities:

  • Kazan (Volga Region) Federal University;
  • Higher School of Economics;
  • Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University;
  • Northern (Arctic) Federal University;
  • North-Ossetia State University;
  • Novosibirsk State Technical University;
  • Pacific National University;
  • Russian State University of Humanities;
  • St. Petersburg State University of Economics and Finance;
  • Udmurt State University.

Scholarships from EU Member States

The Delegation of the European Union in cooperation with the EU Member States Embassies publishes a guide to all the scholarship schemes offered by individual Member States and by the European Commission.

The European Studies Institute at MGIMOOpening of a new building of European Studies Institute (01 September 2010)

A major element in EU-Russia cooperation on education has been the opening of a new European Studies Institute (ESI), housed at the Moscow State Institute for International Relations (MGIMO). The ESI offers typically a Master’s degree programme in European Integration Studies. Since 2006 more than 400 students graduated the ESI.

EU study weeks

Since 1998 the Press and Information Section of the EU Delegation to Russia has organised more then forty EU Study Weeks all over the Russian Federation. EU Study Weeks gather together 30-40 students from different faculties (international relations, law, history, political science, economics, to give some examples) with experts and academics from the EU and from Russia. The week is spent exploring different aspects of EU-Russia relations in depth, with the emphasis very much being on the students to work on looking for new areas of potential research, on developing links with future EU specialists, and on focusing on concrete examples of EU-Russia co-operation.

EU Information Centres

EU Information Centres have been set up by the European Commission at Universities in the EU and in a number of third countries with the aim to promote research and teaching on European integration and to provide general information about EU policies to the academic world and the public at large. They are linked to the European Commission by an agreement fixing mutual rights and obligations. In order to fulfill their tasks, they receive access to Commission databases and documents and publications about the EU directly from Brussels. There are 13 centres operating in Russian Federation in Moscow, Kazan, Saratov, Kaliningrad, Petrozavodsk, St Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Tomsk and Yoshkar-Ola.

Education fairs

Education and Career Fair in MoscowTo discuss EU-related educational opportunities and find out more about the programmes described above, the EU Delegation to Russia welcomes to visit one of the various education fairs where the European Union is represented. For more information click here.



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