For more detailed information on the Lisbon Convention and to find a national reference office for recognition, visit the official ENIC-NARIC network page
The Lisbon Convention was introduced under the joint auspices of UNESCO and the Council of Europe, which includes UNESCO’s “European and North American” region; therefore, in addition to European countries (Council of Europe definition), it also includes countries in the world’s so-called Western sphere (United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Israel). Currently, there are 55 signatories to the Convention of which 53 also ratified it. This Convention was signed by the Holy See in 1997 and ratified in 2001.
The Convention’s main principle is that all academic studies and degrees, that were carried out in a member country, are recognized in all other countries, unless substantial differences between similar studies in different countries are proven. Furthermore, this Convention also requires all members to provide useful information, through a publically accessible website, regarding their countries’ academic institutions higher education system, as well as information on standard practices for degree recognition. Plus, all countries must establish or designate a particular office or body (called NARIC for EU countries and ENIC for the other member countries) to manage related agendas and provide authoritative information on these matters.