New Regional Convention for the Recognition of Studies, Degrees and Diplomas in Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean enters into force
The New Regional Convention for the Recognition of Studies, Degrees and Diplomas in Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean led by UNESCO entered into force on October 23rd. The instrument seeks to harmonize the regulatory frameworks for recognizing academic degrees among ratifying States to promote academic mobility and regional integration in higher education.
Cuba, Grenada, Peru and Uruguay completed the ratification process after having been endorsed ad referendum by their respective parliamentary bodies. The New Regional Convention was signed in the city of Buenos Aires by 23 countries of the region on July 17, 2019.
Its entry into force will contribute to translating the commitments made towards the achievement of the target set by SDG 4.3 by favoring the removal of barriers to access to skills development and higher education and thus enabling lifelong learning opportunities for youth and adults.
This instrument will promote traction for interregional academic mobility, which is of paramount importance given that the Latin American and Caribbean geographic bloc has the lowest student mobility rate in the world.
Although the importance of having this legally binding agreement has been recurrently reaffirmed in the political and academic agenda of the region, its operationalization and development have encountered difficulties in the past that have been resolved or are in the process of being resolved.
As stated in the text of the New Regional Convention itself, it does not imply any change ab initio concerning national legislation regulating the issue of recognition but seeks to harmonize processes and procedures used by ratifying States, with the ultimate aim of ensuring that the recognition process is transparent, consistent and reliable.
UNESCO-IESALC joins in celebrating the Latin American and Caribbean region with the entry into force of the New Regional Convention for the Recognition of Studies, Diplomas and Degrees in Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Likewise, it takes advantage of the entry into force of the New Regional Convention to urge the rest of the signatory States to promptly ratify said instrument, in the certainty that the deepening of the internationalization of higher education in the region requires systemic, integral, comprehensive and cross-cutting strategies, and that the New Regional Convention is undoubtedly one of them.
UNESCO-IESALC assumes the Technical Secretariat of the New Regional Convention to play a coordinating, advisory and service role that will impact the full development and implementation of this convention. IESALC is preparing the constitution of the New Regional Convention Committee, the rules of procedure that will regulate its operation and the 2023-2025 work plan, all of which will be agreed upon at the first working meeting, details of which will be announced shortly.