Estonia to Support Moldova’s EU Integration via Higher Education Institutions

A new initiative, “Enhancing Moldova’s Europeanization Through Innovative Teaching Practices” (Best4ME), is being launched to strengthen the teaching and learning capacities of Moldovan higher education institutions (HEI). Best4ME’s long-term intention is to advance Moldova’s integration into EU education systems overall.

Funded by the Estonian Centre for International Development (ESTDEV), Best4ME is being implemented by the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies at the University of Tartu (UT), in partnership with Moldova State University (MSU).

Over the next twelve months, Best4ME will strengthen research and teaching expertise in European studies programmes at MSU by involving teaching staff and administrators. The programmes will provide graduates with the skills and knowledge necessary for future employment in organisations responsible for implementing the societal reforms key to Moldova’s EU integration (these include government institutions, administration structures, and NGOs).

The project will focus on:

  • Delivering professional development courses for lecturers on innovative pedagogies and digital learning methods specific to European studies
  • Organising online and in-person courses for MSU students on European studies, including a a study trip to EU and Estonian public sector institutions in Tallinn
  • Organising the mobility of MSU teaching staff to present research and observe teaching practices at the UT
  • Providing scholarships and mentorship opportunities to incentivise MSU students to pursue master’s theses on EU-related topics
  • Delivering a final workshop to evaluate impact and communicate the final report to stakeholders in Moldova

“ESTDEV is pleased to support this collaboration between the University of Tartu and Moldova State University, and enable the exchange of students and teachers between the two universities and countries. Their cooperation will lay the foundation for a digital transformation of the MSU into a modern educational institution, and introduce digital pedagogy in teaching,” explained Kristel Rillo, Programme Manager for Education and Entrepreneurship at ESTDEV.

“A high-quality education system and an intelligent and resourceful citizenry are the foundation for sustainable development in any country. When modernising and raising standards in higher education, opportunities lie in internationalisation and learning from the best practices. As we both are small countries, Estonia has a unique understanding of Moldova’s ambition,” Rillo added.

Dr. Stefano Braghiroli, Associate Professor of European Studies at the University of Tartu and academic coordinator of the project, commented, “Best4ME has the potential to cultivate a genuine positive impact on Moldova’s path to full EU membership. By bridging effective academic exchange and proactive learning, we can contribute to turning the next generation of local graduates into the first generation of Moldova’s EU citizens.”

Anna Beitane, Manager of Online Learning Projects, said, “One of the pillars of the project is the integration of innovative, digital teaching practices in Moldovan universities. Together with our Moldovan partners, we look forward to strengthening Moldova’s e-learning in line with the tenets of the European Higher Education Area.”

The budget for the education initiative is 74,290 EUR and the project’s duration is 1.06.2023-31.05.2024.

More information[email protected]

Estonian Centre for International Development is a government foundation that manages and implements Estonia’s participation in international development cooperation and humanitarian aid projects, with the aim of increasing Estonia’s contribution to global security and sustainable development.