International Cooperation

Cnous and the Crous lead an active cooperation, firstly in the european framework, where it discuss with its partners on the material conditions and the social dimension of mobility in the Bologna process,
But also in the francophonie area and internationally.

Cnous and Crous are developing cooperation and transfer of engineering programs in the areas of accommodation, catering, investments, international welcome, finance, IT, human resources management and training.

These projects are based on bilateral and multilateral funding and particularly on european programs.


The European Council for Student Affairs (ECStA) is a non-profit association under Belgian law aiming to promote student services to Higher Education Institutions in Europe.
Ecsta seeks to improve cooperation between Student Affairs organizations in Europe and to improve knowledge of social support schemes for students.
Student mobility in Europe is at the heart of ECStA ‘s actions.

ECStA supports the Bologna process and the development of the Higher Education area in Europe and participates in the work of the Bologna process monitoring group (BFUG).

Beyond professional exchanges between its members, ECStA, aware of the challenges of the evolution of higher education in the world, endeavors to define and strengthen a European strategy for Student Affairs services, the specificities of the social dimension of the European Higher Education area, the role of Student Affairs services, of cooperation and partnerships with other Higher Education Institutions, the role of ECStA in Europe and in the global debate, the attractiveness of Europe.

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The European Student Card is nothing else than the student card issued by Higher Education Institutions, enhanced with a European dimension. This European dimension requires a visual identity ensured by a hologram
By recognizing the student’s electronic identity across Europe, and beyond. The interconnection of universities’ information systems allows them to recognize the student ID cards they host and allow them smooth and expanded access to the services they need.
The student status becomes European and allows student mobility in all its forms: accommodation booking, fluid administrative procedures, access to university restaurants, online digital services, libraries, electronic payment, etc.

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Franco-German cooperation between the network of French university works and its German counterpart the Deutsches Studentenwerk (DSW) and the Studentenwerke (STW) dates back to the signing of the Elysée Treaty in 1963. This cooperation occupies a central place in the life of the two networks. It concerns the French and German Crous networks as a whole as well as the twinning of regional structures. This benefits not only students but also staff from the various trades of university works.


Many German Crous and Studentenwerke have concluded twinning agreements (15 are active in 2020) in order to encourage Franco-German exchanges for students and staff of the two institutions.
Discovery stays, exchanges of good practices and convivial activities promoting intercultural knowledge, professional and technical monitoring, strategic reflection on the evolutions of higher education systems are organized.

To do this, the two networks benefit from the strong and unwavering support of the OFAJ / FGYO

  • Exchange / seminar of students and / or staff of university works on a chosen theme
  • Internship for apprentice cooks and for administrative and workers
  • Franco-German volunteering

The 1963 Elysee Treaty was renewed by the Aachen Treaty, which undertook to strengthen the mobility of young people, particularly in vocational education.


The cooperation between the Crous and the Studentenwerke is managed by a working group made up of French and German directors, which meets twice a year.


Since the start of the 2015/2016 school year, the Franco-German Youth Office (OFAJ) has set up a Franco-German Volunteering in higher education enabling young people to carry out a civic service mission at a university and / or a Crous / Studentenwerk in Germany and France.
The Franco-German Volunteering in Higher Education makes it possible to get to know the university environment of the neighboring country and to improve knowledge of German language outside of conventional academic mobility.
Universities and Crous are selected each year to welcome a volunteer. The volunteer performs a 10-month mission at the rate of 24 to 35 hours weekly. Training is provided by the FGYO to volunteers in September who join their host organization in October.

The volunteer’s mission consists essentially in helping to enliven student life, in particular in the service of international welcome and Franco-German cooperation.
The specificity of the Franco-German Volunteering is that it is integrated both into the system of the agency of the Civic Service and of the International Jugendfreiwilligendienst.
In 2019, 7 Crous welcomed a German volunteer.

Find out more (in French): FGYO  and on


Franco-German conferences are the flagship and traditional events of Franco-German cooperation.

It is an opportunity, every two years, for the directors of Crous and the directors of Studentenwerke, to meet for 3 days for professional exchanges on the practices of the management of student Affairs in France and across the Rhine and a strategic reflection on the role of Student Affairs services in their Higher Education systems.
These symposia have long acquired a European dimension and welcome, in addition to the Germans and the French, experts of student Affairs from all over Europe.
The last conference, on Europe and student life, was held in Strasbourg from 25 to 29 August 2019.

          Proceedings of the 40 th french-german colloquium



Cooperation with Italy, formalized by a main agreement signed in 2013, endeavors to develop structuring projects essentially around European mobility. This project initiated to develop an identity card and a multiservice student card has led to the emergence of the European student & card project.


Most French-speaking countries have systems of university works comparable with public administrative establishments dedicated to student services: the Crous.
With its Francophone partners, Cnous leads intense bilateral and multilateral cooperation. Meeting in Cotonou in December 2004, student Affairs organizations from Francophone African countries and Cnous launched the Association of University Works of La Francophonie (AOUF)

This association has the following main objectives:

  • Develop exchanges and cooperation between organizations responsible for Student Affairs services in the member countries of the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF).
  • Promote Student Affairs services within Higher Education systems and with their national partners.
  • Recognize Student Affairs services as a priority area for bilateral and multilateral international cooperation.
  • Help structure and institutionalize student mobility between member countries.

In addition, framework agreements signed with national representative structures help regulate bilateral cooperation between France and Francophone countries.


Cnous have a long-standing structured cooperation with the National Association of Student Personnel Administration (NASPA) in the US, which enables those who manage Student Affairs to develop their professional exchanges on their best practices.
It drives formal exchanges with many countries on all continents.

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