Dec 3, 2018 at 12:00am ET By Joanna Hughes

Many issues remain up in the air as Brexit negotiations continue. According to a report from Erasmus+, however, there’s cause to be optimistic on international exchange, education, and training collaboration. Here’s a closer look at what we know about the future for the UK and the popular EU funding program for education, youth, training, and sport, according to a recent update from Erasmus+.

A Commitment to Exchange

The joint report by the EU and the UK government negotiators on the first phase of negotiations a year ago stated, “following withdrawal from the Union, the UK will continue to participate in the Union programs financed by the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) 2014-2020 until their closure.” One such program? Erasmus+. Under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, UK organizations will remain eligible to apply for Erasmus+ funds, and therefore should be encouraged to continue to bid for support.

An Unlikely Plan B

While the UK government expressed confidence that the Withdrawal Agreement will be ratified, there’s always the possibility of a 'no deal' outcome in March of 2019. In that case, the UK government said in a Technical Notice it that it would underwrite funds for all successful bids for funding submitted prior to the UK’s exit, including under the 2019 Call for Proposal, which was released this past fall. Funding will then continue for the lifetime of those projects.

Again, both Erasmus+ and the UK government stress the unlikelihood of a “no deal” scenario coming to fruition. The UK says, “Negotiations are progressing well and both we and the EU continue to work hard to seek a positive deal. However, it’s our duty as a responsible government to prepare for all eventualities, including ‘no deal’, until we can be certain of the outcome of those negotiations.”

Joanna worked in higher education administration for many years at a leading research institution before becoming a full-time freelance writer. She lives in the beautiful White Mountains region of New Hampshire with her family.

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