SMILE – Social Meaning Impact through Lifelong Learning universities in Europe

This project is closed and ran between 2020 and 2023.


The project SMILE – Social Meaning Impact through Lifelong Learning universities in Europe – aims to achieve inclusive higher education by providing higher education institutions with the tools to deal with diversity and social inclusion.


The first principle of the European Pillar of Social Rights states that everyone has the right to quality and inclusive education. Though inclusive education is one of the priorities at the EU level, there is still much progress to be made in this area. That is the reason why SMILE focuses specifically on ethnicity, women in leadership, and socio-economic background divergences when evaluating the way to boost inclusiveness. The project envisions improving participation, progress and achievement of disadvantaged learners in higher education institutions.


The activities of the SMILE Project, which were launched in December 2020 and were carried out until November 2023, started with a research component evaluating the situation of disadvantaged groups in higher education and of potential ways in which inclusion can be achieved. Based on this research, the main project outcomes are a diversity audit template that can be used by higher education institutions’ management, three continuous professional development courses for higher education institutions’ staff members and an action plan based on policy recommendations for institutional leaders and decision-makers in general.

Project partners

SOLIDAR Foundation joins the following organisations in this ERASMUS+-funded project consortium: