The researchers compare current studies in different European countries, while taking into account different cultural beliefs and values. In addition, they examine the mechanisms that affect access to early childhood education. The effects of preschool education and how long such effects persist are important aspects that are being investigated. Another aspect is whether there are specific effects for certain groups of children and whether high-quality institutional care can compensate for facets that are missing at home. The researchers are striving for internationally comparable results because the generalizability of results across the regions being surveyed and across specific cultural contexts is of essential importance for developing sustainable policies that will increase the impact of early childhood education and care.
The following institutions are cooperating partners in the CARE project: Freie Universität Berlin, Utrecht University (Netherlands), Oxford University (Great Britain), Aarhus University (Denmark), the University of Leuven (Belgium), the University of Jyväskylä (Finland), the University of Milano-Bicocca (Italy), the Hellenic Open University (Greece), the ISCTE - Instituto Univesitario de Lisboa (Portugal), Vestfold University College (Norway), and the University of Warsaw (Poland). The coordinator of the project is Utrecht University. CARE stands for Curriculum Quality Analysis and Impact Review of European Early Childhood Education and Care. The project is funded by the European Union.