“European InfoNet Adult Education” was a network of journalists and communication professionals who took on the task of publishing journalistic articles and prepared information on adult education in Europe. The members included international and European organisations, national umbrella organisations, universities and educational institutions.
Until the end of September 2015 – when funding came to an end on the European Union Lifelong Learning Programme – the network operated an online platform where its reports were published. At the same time, the network launched the new “European Lifelong Learning Magazine – ELM”; an online publication supported by several network partners and published by the Finnish Lifelong Learning Foundation (KVS). ELM is a fusion between InfoNet and the well-known KVS magazine “Lifelong Learning in Europe” (LLinE).
Nine years of EU funding
The first stage of funding (2005–2008) was all about establishing the network, creating structures and an article service for the publications of the network partners. The second stage (2008–2011) involved the online platform being developed and made available to all those interested. The focuses of the third stage of the project (2012–2015) were modernising the online platform, extending its contents to provide more in-depth reporting and creating long-term structures which would last beyond the funding phase. Articles were written and edited in line with specific journalistic criteria. The quality criteria were developed to match journalist ambitions, and network partners were given training. Until the end of the project, InfoNet published roughly one specialist article a week.
Independent and in a spirit of partnership InfoNet saw itself as an independent journalistic network supported by actors from civil society working as partners. Most of the 30 partners on the InfoNet III project were correspondents reporting on their country or a certain topic, divided into smaller subgroups which were each monitored by a member of the editorial team. In addition to this, there was a group for academic reporting. The partners were able to take part in special working groups to further the network‘s development.
Readers of InfoNet were for example:
• Project managers experts, professionals
• National agencies of adult learning
• Umbrella organisations
• European direct centres • Adult learning centres / providers
• Scientists and editors
InfoNet offered this kind of content:
• Interviews with leading personalities on adult education
• Current background reports on European education policy
• Adult education systems in different countries
• Best-practice reports and articles on projects
• Implementation of relevant subjects in the various countries, such as gender, unemployment or migration
• New research results and book reviews
• Comments and Cartoons