Adult Education Academy

Prof. Borut Mikulec

Prof. Dr. Borut Mikulec is associate professor of adult and continuing education at the Department of Educational Sciences, Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana.

  • the role of transnational organisations in education policy
  • international and comparative adult education
  • the policy in adult education
  • profession-alization of adult educators
  • continuing vocational education and training
  • and citizenship education

CG 4: Actors and governance of adult learning and education systems  


Adult learning and education (ALE) systems consist of a variety of organised learning opportunities (both formal and non-formal) available to adults, including the associated structures and stakeholders that shape the organisation and governance of ALE. Over the last 30 years, organised forms of ALE have increased, with this trend being more pronounced in some countries than in others. Countries that have developed advanced ALE systems see ALE as a tool for steering economic and social development.

The existence of ALE systems is by no means self-evident, as the ALE system lies at the interface of various national systems: the education and training system, the labour market and employment system, as well as welfare state policy and other social policy measures. Furthermore, the coordination of ALE systems between the state, the market and civil society is supported by four different regimes with common features: market-led regime, state-led regime, stakeholder-led regime, and state-led regime with a high degree of stakeholder involvement.

The ALE systems include:

  • Adult Basic (ISCED 1, 2) and General Education (ISCED 3) (including basic skills programmes)
  • Adult Higher Education (ISCED 5a, 5b)
  • Adult Vocational Education (various formal (ISCED 3b, 3c, 4, 5b, 5c) or non-formal education programmes)
  • Adult Liberal Education (typically includes sports, hobbies and other leisure-related activities).

As ALE systems lie at the interface of various national systems (education, labour market, social welfare), successful coordination between the state and the social partners is the key to success in governing ALE system.

  1. MIKULEC, B. (2021): The influence of international intergovernmental organisations on Slovenian adult education policies. International journal of lifelong education, 40(1), 37-52.
  2. GUIMARÃES, P., & MIKULEC, B. (2021): The paradox of utilitarian recognition of prior learning: the cases of Portugal and Slovenia. European journal for research on the education and learning of adults, 12(1), 109-122.
  3. KOŠMERL, T., & MIKULEC, B. (2021): You have to run it like a companyʹ: the marketisation of adult learning and education in Germany and Slovenia. European journal for research on the education and learning of adults, 12(1), 47-63.
  4. SCHWARZ, J., & MIKULEC, B. (2020): The role of organisations in the professionalisation of adult educators in Germany and Slovenia. Andragogical Studies, 2, 9-32.
  5. MIKULEC, B. (2019): Competences of adult education professionals in the European and Slovene context. Journal of adult and continuing education, 25(1), 25-44.
  6. MIKULEC, B. (2018): Normative presumptions of the European Union's adult education policy. Studies in the education of adults, 50(2), 133-151.
  7. MIKULEC, B. (2017): Impact of the Europeanisation of education: qualifications frameworks in Europe. European educational research journal, 16(4), 455-473.



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