Skip to main content


EACEA National Policies Platform


1. Youth Policy Governance

1.8 Cross-border cooperation

Last update: 26 January 2021


On this page
  1. Cooperation with European countries
  2. International cooperation


Cooperation with European countries

UK participation in the European Union funded programme, Erasmus+, is not covered in this description of youth policy (see the article on ‘Cross-border learning mobility’).

The UK participates in the EU Working Party for Youth, which sits under the Education, Youth, Culture and Sport (EYCS) Council. The Working Party on Youth prepares items for decision by EU ministers for youth at each EYCS Council meeting. There is an EYCS Council meeting during each six-monthly EU presidency.

Via representatives in Brussels, the UK contributes to draft youth conclusions via The Working Party for Youth. These conclusions are then put to the Council for approval.

The Working Group for Youth and the EYCS Council operate under the EU’s Open Method of Cooperation (OMC). Under the OMC, EU countries are evaluated by one another (peer pressure) against a set of indexes, with the Commission's role being limited to surveillance (i.e. it has no legislative or formal powers of compulsion).

International cooperation

The UK Government is a signatory to the Council of Europe’s European Cultural Convention (ETS No. 18) and participates in the European Steering Committee for Youth (CDEJ). The CDEJ supervises a programme of activities involving policy makers, youth researchers and youth work practitioners and focuses particularly on the development of youth policies in its member states.

Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) may apply to the European Youth Foundation (EYF). The EYF fund was established in 1972 by the Council of Europe to provide financial and educational support for European youth activities.