Maria Lourdes Aknazan Khan, Secretary General of ASPBAE, co-chairs the World Education Forum in Incheon, Republic of Korea, in May 2015.

Meeting of ASPBEA and dvv-international. The cooperation with ASPBEA is essential to successfully advocate adult education in national and international policies.

ASPBAE meets to prepare the Civil Society Forum of the Third International Conference Financing for Development in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in July 2015.

ASPBAE meets students from the School of Development Studies, Mumbai, India, to share thoughts on Education Policy and Development in the Asia Pacific region.

Asia South Pacific Association for Basic and Adult Education (ASPBAE)

We have been working with the Asian-South Pacific Bureau of Adult Education (ASPBAE) since the 1970s. The Association, which is based in Mumbai, India, was founded in Sydney in 1964, the year when UNESCO held its Regional Conference on Adult Education there. For more than 40 years, the Association has met the challenge of keeping abreast with the changing demands and requirements of adult education in Asia and the South Pacific, the emphasis now being on the concept of lifelong education. ASPBAE actively promotes adult education which will enable underprivileged people in the region to become aware of their situation, to take responsibility, and to play an active part in a development process that will truly meet their needs.

ASPBAE is an umbrella body, and now has some 100 individual and 200 institutional member organizations in 30 countries. It has successfully established itself as the hub of a network of organizations and experts working on innovative approaches in adult education, and especially on the development of the civil society. ASPBAE is the largest regional adult education association. It has a worldwide reputation and represents its members on various international organizations.Among the activities of ASPBAE are:

  • Development of plans, methods and teaching materials
  • In-service training
  • Professional events for members
  • Research and evaluation
  • Lobbying and political advocacy

The main aim of ASPBAE in the area of structural support for providers is to strengthen the staffing, methods and funding of civil society member bodies working in the AE sector. This is achieved through such activities as staff development, management training, gender mainstreaming and mobilisation of resources. Where necessary and feasible, ASPBAE consults individual members in order to strengthen them institutionally. Close cooperation with a number of networks of CSOs (Civil Society Organisations) on particular topics also helps to consolidate the institutions involved. ASPBAE enhances its own effectiveness through regular internal inservice training and review and planning meetings. The financial basis has been widened through agreements with additional donors. To back up all these actions, ASPBAE maintains an information and communications programe (database, website, news bulletins, E-group discussions and other media activities).

The key focus of ASPBAE education and training activities is on training for management staff, trainers and facilitators in the area of AE and lifelong learning. Courses, workshops and study visits are conducted to this end, research and documentation are carried out, and teaching and learning materials are developed. The main topics covered by such activities are:

  • Literacy and basic education
  • Vocational education and training
  • Environmental education
  • Health education, including HIV/AIDS prevention
  • Conflict prevention and education for peace
  • Education for women
  • Education for older people
  • Education for indigenous groups
  • Education for migrants
  • Information technology

ASPBAE is very actively engaged in political lobbying for education at national, regional and global level, and is committed to achieving the implementation of international resolutions on “Education for All” (EFA), stressing the importance of AE as a necessary adjunct to formal school education. It has set up an eight-country Asia Pacific Education Watch to monitor the situation and expansion of education – with particular attention to deficits, disadvantaged groups and funding – and to issue calls for action. ASPBAE forges coalitions with the major organisations in the field of lifelong learning, creates strategic partnerships, especially with national educational coalitions, and establishes networks on key issues in AE. It supports national and regional education campaigns and conducts studies and analyses of these. The association is involved in the preparations for the Sixth International Conference on Adult Education (CONFINTEA VI / 2009) and will play an active part in that project. Our partner continues to lobby for national education policies that focus on the poor and disadvantaged.


Contact person at ASPBAE Secretariat in Manila, Philippines:
Maria Maria Helen Dabu

Regional project

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