Bildung project contributes to innovation of the European adult education sector by adopting the holistic concept of ‘Bildung’ and exploring its political and practical potential for adult learning and education.

The multiple challenges and rapid changes in our societies in Europe demand us to rethink the role of education. While Lifelong Learning is widely accepted as the main concept, we have to rethink the role and concepts of Adult Learning and Education (ALE). This is essential if we want to equip citizens with the skills to make informed decisions and take transformative action in the world shaped by e.g. climate change, digitalisation and social divide.

The Bildung project contributes to this re-thinking by making use of the concept of “Bildung” for conceptualising ALE. The concept, rooted in the tradition of the enlightenment and the Nordic Folkbildning envisages an education, targeting all aspects of development of individuals, communities and societies, including e.g. ethical, emotional and scientific dimensions in a holistic manner.

Eleven partners from all over Europe will explore the use this concept for the ALE sector in the fields of digitalisation, sustainability, democracy and basic skills education.

Aim and objectives

BILDUNG will offer decision makers and ALE providers on the European and national level with:

  • A conceptual framework and recommendation on how to widen ALE services and structures using the Bildung lens
  • Good practices of projects from various regions in Europe already using the Bildung/Folkbildning approach
  • Real and virtual spaces for exchange and peer learning


The project has published several outputs:


We have organised the following events:

  • Four webinars on the use of the Bildung-concept for developing ALE activities on digital learning, democracy, sustainability and basic learning
  • Two Multiplier Events:
    • For practitioners on how to use the concept
    • For policy makers and ALE networks on how to use the Bildung concept for improving ALE systems. The event took place in Vienna 22 March 2023 and it was called: What is Bildung? A new Bildung agenda for Europe!


The project is running from December 2020 until May 2023. In 2021, we are planning to finish the following project results:

  • A comprehensive context paper, illustrating the history of Bildung and bringing together Bildung with European concepts and frameworks
  • The two best practice guidelines:
    • for democracy learning and promoting democratic values in Europe and
    • promoting digital skills and use of new technologies in adult learning.

We will be meeting twice during that time period in order to work on and further discuss the project outcomes. The partner meetings are organised in Germany and Ireland.

During the second half of the project we will be working on the two best practice guidelines:

  • Bildung in adult learning for promoting sustainability and
  • Bildung for Basic Education.

Based on these results we will create the roadmap, as well as the educational video explaining the concept. During the second half of the project there will be two partner meetings.