©ILO/Crozet M.
- Electronic workshop of the Dar es Salaam Regional Vocational Training and Services Center

2012: Third International Congress on TVET: Building Skills for Work and Life (Shanghai, People’s Republic of China)

2010: World Conference on Early Childhood Care and Education (Moscow, Russian Federation).

2009: World Conference on Higher Education “The New Dynamics of Higher Education and Research for Societal Change and Development” (Paris, France).

2009: Sixth International Conference on Adult Education “Living and Learning for a Viable Future: the Power of Adult Learning”  (Belem, Brazil).

2009: World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development  "Moving into the Second Half of the UN Decade"  (Bonn, Germany).

2008: 48th International Conference on Education: “Inclusive Education: the Way of the Future”  (Geneva, Switzerland).

2004: The UNAIDS Committee of Cosponsoring Organizations (CCO) launches EDUCAIDS, the Global initiative on Education and HIV & AIDS, in March 2004, to develop comprehensive education sector responses to HIV and AIDS. 

2004: The UNESCO International Experts Meeting Learning for Work, Citizenship and Sustainability  is a five year review of progress in TVET since the Second International Congress on TVET in Seoul.

2003: The United Nations Literacy Decade (2003-2012) is launched. UNESCO’s Literacy Initiative for Empowerment (LIFE 2005) serves as a framework for achieving the Decade’s goals.

2002: The United Nations General Assembly declares a Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014) and designates UNESCO as the lead agency for the promotion of this Decade. 

© UNESCO/Roger, Dominique
Group of pupils studying, Ethiopia

2000 : The United Nations Millennium Declaration is adopted to achieve eight anti-poverty goals, known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), by 2015.

2000: The World Education Forum   (Dakar, Senegal) adopts the Dakar Framework for Action, 2000-2015, commiting governments to achieving basic education for all (EFA) by 2015. 

1999: Second International Congress on Technical and Vocational Education (Seoul, Republic of Korea).

1998: The first World Conference on Higher Education “Vision and Action” (Paris, France).

1997: The Fifth International Conference on Adult Education (Hamburg, Germany) devotes much time to discussing continuous teacher training.

1994-1995: Declaration and Integrated Framework of Action on Education for Peace, Human Rights and Democracy, ICE (Geneva, Switzerland).

1993: The International Commission on Education for the Twenty-first Century is chaired by Jacques Delors. The report, Learning: the Treasure Within is published in 1996.

1993: International Congress and World Plan of Action on Education for Human Rights and Democracy (Montreal, Canada).

1990: The World Declaration on Education for All adopted by the World Conference on Education For All (Jomtien, Thailand) launches a global movement to provide basic education for all children, youth and adults.

1989: International Congress and Declaration on peace in the minds of men (Yamoussoukro, Côte d’Ivoire).

1989: The Convention on the Rights of the Child is adopted by the United Nations General Assembly (New York, United States).

1987: International Congress on the Development and Improvement of Technical and Vocational Education  (Berlin, Germany).

1985: The Fourth International Conference on Adult Education adopts a Declaration on the Recognition of the Right to Learn (Paris, France). 


© UNESCO/Roger Dominique
Young lady and a man reading, Iran (Islamic Republic of)

1979: The International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against  Women is adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 18 December 1979 (New York, United States).

1974-1983: International conferences adopt conventions on the recognition of studies, diplomas and degrees in higher education, leading to the adoption by UNESCO’s General Conference of a Recommendation on the Recognition of Studies and Qualifications in Higher Education (1993).

1972: Third International Conference on Adult Education (Tokyo, Japan).

1970: The International Commission on the Development of Education is chaired by Edgar Faure. Learning to be (1972) develops major ideas such as lifelong education and the learning society.

1966: The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of the United Nations, in which the States “recognize the right of everyone to education” is adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 16 December 1966 (New York, United States).

1965: The International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination is adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 21 December 1965 (New York, United States).

1960: The Second World Conference on Adult Education (Montreal, Canada) proposes to launch a massive campaign for the eradication of illiteracy.

1960: The Convention against Discrimination in Education adopted by the General Conference of UNESCO in December sets out the principles of “equality of opportunity and of treatment” in education.

1959: The Declaration of the Rights of the Child, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in November states that: “The child is entitled to receive education, which shall be free and compulsory."

1953: Launch of the UNESCO Associated Schools Project.

1952:  Creation of the UNESCO Institute for Education, a foundation under German civil law (now called the Institute for Lifelong Learning)

1949: International Conference on Adult Education (Elsinore, Denmark). 

1948: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948 identifies education as a human right.

1946: The Constitution of UNESCO proclaims that: “The State Parties [believe] in full and equal opportunities for education for all” and defines one of UNESCO’s main functions in the following terms: “ Give fresh impulse to popular education and to the spread of culture [...] by instituting collaboration among the nations to advance the ideal of equality of educational opportunity without regard to race, sex or any distinctions, economic or social". 

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