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UNESCO votes for creating International Competence Center in Saint Petersburg

Friday, 13 October, 2017
UNESCO votes for creating International Competence Center in Saint Petersburg

The Center will work on the unification of educational standards for universities of different countries and on the development of technologies for the mineral resources sector.

On Friday 13 October in Paris, on its 202nd session the Executive Board of UNESCO has unanimously adopted the decision to establish the International Competence Center for Mining-Engineering Education under the UNESCO auspices. The Center will be based in Saint Petersburg Mining University which currently occupies the 15th place among the world’s mining-engineering universities according to the QS rating.

The Center will play an important role in the realization of the UN’s sustainable development goals, such as increasing education quality, dealing with climate change, protecting and restoring ecosystems. The first step towards the establishment of the Center was made in December 2015 when the Director–General of UNESCO Irina Bokova and the Rector of Mining University Vladimir Litvinenko signed the appropriate communiqué.

The interest of UNESCO, leading engineering universities and international business leaders in the Center has a good reason. The existing shortage of qualified managers and specialists in mining and processing companies hinders the development of national economies and causes losses of life and environmental pollution as a result of industrial accidents.

Adopting the decision to establish the Center, the executive Board of UNESCO emphasized that its tasks are in exact accordance with the organization’s top priorities and called on all countries to “actively cooperate with the International Competence Center for Mining-Engineering Education in the Russian Federation.”

The Center’s tasks will include unification of educational standards for mining-engineering universities of different countries; development of a unified system of professional certification of engineers; increased mobility of undergraduates, postgraduates and teaching staff; introduction of new technologies for higher efficiency and safety of mining enterprises.

“The key element in the realization of sustainable development goals is increased quality of higher education together with a new system of lifelong professional training for the workers of mining and processing companies. This is why UNESCO has supported the idea of establishing the International Competence Center for Mining-Engineering Education,” said the Director–General of UNESCO Irina Bokova.

The Rector of Mining University Vladimir Litvinenko noted that the Center will raise the quality of professional education: “We have set up an organizing committee including the representatives of mining-engineering universities — there are currently more than 800 such universities in the world. The International Competence Center is to become an effective tool for promoting increased education quality and continuous professional development through a system of lifelong learning.”

It is noteworthy that the establishment of the International Competence Center for Mining-Engineering Education under the UNESCO auspices was approved by the International Council of Rectors in Saint Petersburg on 22 September. The Council included the heads of 135 universities from 60 countries.

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