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Community Learning Social Networks - Harnessing Educational Assets & Addressing Educational Needs (Netbox)


Period: 01.11.2011 – 30.10.2013
Partners: Ireland, UK, Cyprus, Romania, Germany, Poland, Lithuania, Portugal, Finland

With over 500 million registered users, if Facebook were a country it would be the 3rd largest in the world. The growth of social networking is a global phenomenon; in a relatively short time-frame it has become an accepted part of everyday life. The willingness of people from all social and economic sectors to engage in this virtual community continues. Facebook and its other social networking counterparts have succeeded in creating new vehicles for inclusion; new concepts of identity; new definitions of social. Social networking is no longer a ‘new’ thing; it is now a part of who we are; what we do; how we see ourselves.

The shift in mind-sets that has been brought about by the success of social networking presents profound opportunities for education providers if they can harness the acquiescence of the general public toward social networking to create sustainable education networks.

Asset Based Community Development is a concept that considers local assets as the primary building blocks of sustainable community development. Building on the skills of local residents, the power of local associations, and the supportive functions of local institutions, asset-based community development draws upon existing community strengths to build stronger, more sustainable communities for the future. Needs Based Community Development is the alternative approach to building communities focussing on identifying the needs of groups at risk and providing appropriate responses. This project will draw on the best practice elements of both community development approaches.

The focus of this project is to pilot a model micro-social network in rural communities that focuses on identifying all the educational assets and educational needs within that community and creates viable and sustainable learning partnerships between local people, institutions and businesses to harness the assets and address the needs for the benefits of all who live and work in that community.


At the end of 2021 and the beginning of 2022, the Association for Education and Sustainable Development launched 4 new projects funded directly by the European Commission through the Erasmus + program, the KA2 Partnerships for Cooperation action:

EASY - Educating Adults Against Stereotypes

PRO-DIGIT - Promote motivation and skills for school-specific application of digital technologies for vocational education in health sector

C4CC - Calendar for Climate Change - Intergenerational Education to Ease Global Warming

Educator - a pillar of social inclusion in adult education

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