The European Training Foundation (ETF) assessment process provides an external, forward-looking analysis of countries’ human capital development issues and VET policy responses from a lifelong learning perspective. It identifies challenges related to education and training policy and practice that hinder the development and use of human capital, taking stock of them and putting forward recommendations for possible solutions. Such assessments are a key deliverable of the Torino Process, an initiative launched by the ETF in 2010 aimed at providing a periodic review of vocational education and training (VET) systems in the wider context of human capital development and inclusive economic growth. In providing a highquality evaluation of VET policy from a lifelong learning perspective, the assessment process builds on four key principles: ownership, participation, and holistic and evidence-based analysis. For the ETF, human capital development is about supporting countries to create lifelong learning systems, providing opportunities and incentives for people to develop their knowledge, skills, competences and attitudes throughout their lives to help them find employment, realise their potential and contribute to prosperous, innovative and inclusive societies.
The main purpose of these assessments is to provide a reliable source of information to enable the planning and monitoring of national education and training policies with respect to human capital development, as well as offering a foundation for programming and policy dialogue in support of these policies by the European Union and other donors. The ETF assessments rely on evidence collected by the respective countries using a standardised reporting template (national reporting framework – NRF) within a participatory process involving a wide variety of actors with a high degree of ownership. The findings and recommendations of the ETF assessments have been shared and discussed with national authorities and beneficiaries.