Ahead of the meeting, the European Commission set out its position on the way forward towards a European Education Area and a stronger focus on EU culture. The need for a high level of education and training better suited to today's labour market, the right to study in other EU countries, and the role of culture as the backbone of EU unity were all emphasised.
"Education and culture are the key to the future – both for the individual as well as for our Union as a whole. It is how we turn circumstance into opportunity, how we turn mirrors into windows and how we give roots to what it means to be 'European', in all its diversity. When Europe's leaders meet in Gothenburg this week, we must seize the opportunity and make sure education and culture are the drivers for job creation, economic growth, social fairness and ultimately unity."
(President Juncker, 14 November 2017)