International Forums

APEC– Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) is a multilateral forum with 21 member economies. Its main objective it to facilitate economic growth, cooperation, trade, and investment in the Asia-Pacific region. Education is one of many topics addressed within the forum, and the member economies work together to promote quality education, ensure sustainable development, and facilitate academic and professional mobility. The Department of Education coordinates U.S. participation in the APEC Education Ministers Meetings, as well as U.S. involvement in the joint activities undertaken within APEC’s Education Network (EDNET).

OAS– The Organization of American States (OAS) is the primary multilateral organization for the countries of the Western Hemisphere. Its primary missions include the promotion of democracy, human rights, security, and development. Education is an important component of all four missions, and the OAS promotes regional dialogue on education by convening education ministers every two years. The OAS also facilitates information sharing and joint activities through its working-level Inter-American Committee on Education (CIE).  The Department of Education coordinates U.S. participation in education ministerial meetings and the CIE.

OECD– The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is a multilateral organization whose member countries are committed to pluralistic democracy and market economics. The member countries include the leading industrialized countries in Europe, North and South America and the Asia-Pacific region. Participating in OECD allows the United States to compare its educational system with the systems of other industrial countries.  The Department of Education, and especially the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), has been very active in the educational data collection & research work of OECD.  In addition, the Department of Education senior officials represent the United States at OECD education meetings and events.

UNESCO– The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN).  Its purpose is to contribute to peace and security by promoting international collaboration through education, science, and culture. Education is a significant UNESCO focus, both in terms of activities and funding, and the organization fosters dialogue among its member countries on how to improve access, delivery, standards, innovations, and quality assurance at all levels from basic literacy to higher and continuing education.  The Department of Education works with the State Department to support U.S. engagement in UNESCO education activities.

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