On 7 February, Eurydice, the European Commission’s information network on education in Europe, has published a report on “Integrating Asylum Seekers and Refugees into Higher Education in Europe: National Policies and Measures”.

The report assesses national systems in Europe in terms of how they respond to the needs of asylum seekers and refugees in higher education (since 2015/2016). It provides an overview of national policies, strategies and measures in place in European countries to integrate asylum seekers and refugees into higher education.

Germany clearly emerged as the country with the best approach. According to the report, this is due to the combination of political decisions (at federal, regional and higher education institution level) and the implementation of comprehensive measures by the responsible bodies, including a clear monitoring system. This thorough approach has enabled a much smoother integration process than it is the case in other European countries.

The DAAD is named as the organisation that successfully manages the most comprehensive package of measures – compared to other countries – and that takes accountability for exploiting the potential of those, who are qualified to study, as well as for giving them access to German higher education.

In the majority of the countries surveyed, there was no explicit political approach. In most cases, higher education is only covered to a very limited extent under the umbrella of a broader migration/integration strategy. In several countries, however, good practices have been identified – e.g. on recognition of qualifications, language learning support, financial support and personal counselling – that can serve as inspiration for future initiatives.

Refugees in higher education – DAAD programmes and measures

The DAAD wishes to strengthen the potential of academically qualified refugees and provide them access to higher education in Germany. In collaboration with universities and partner organisations, the DAAD is developing various programmes to promote integration of refugees at German universities:


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