On 20 July, Jacques Delors celebrated his 90th birthday. He is seen as an important progressive thinker and fighter for the unification of Europe. However, to educational policy-makers, practitioners and educational researchers he is also known as the director of the UNESCO Commission, who developed a vision for learning and education in the 21st century, entitled “Learning - the treasure within”.
The document focuses on four often quoted topics that appear as current discussion topics (according to Hof, C. (2009): Lebenslanges Lernen. Eine Einführung. Stuttgart):
- Learning to know: Developing a knowledge of the world that is not only based on information, but on the ability to understand and to decide the direction of one’s own life.
- Learning to do: In addition to the skills that are relevant for a profession there are social skills and the ability to solve problems.
- Learning to live together: developing understanding and consideration for others and for their history, tradition and values.
- Learning to be: Learning contributes to the education of the individual. This means critical thinking, assuming responsibility and forming an opinion and so to achieve self-determination.
“Education is seen here as one of the most important means to foster the development of humankind in a better and harmonized way’ (Delors 1997, S.11)” (Hof 2009, S.40)
It is evident that the political and normative claim of learning is related to social utopia.
To honour Jaques Delors‘ 90th birthday we are publishing two documents: first, the original report, available in the UNESCO online library, as well as a short interview on video (see below) that has been produced during the CONFINTEA 2010 in Brazil.