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Recognition of Professional Qualifications in Italy: A Must-Read for Aspiring Professionals in the Bel Paese

by Michela de Julio
Legal Consultant and Official translator,
expert in recognition of academic and professional qualifications

The administrative pathway for the recognition of foreign professional qualifications and titles in Italy is a crucial component for professionals aiming to manoeuvre through the the complexities of international career mobility. This procedure, intricately designed within the Italian legislative framework, differentiates between regulated and unregulated professions, a distinction that is crucial for understanding the prerequisites for professional practice within Italy and the EU in general.

In the landscape of robotic AI advancements, the cross-border mobility of professionals has emerged as a cornerstone of the global economy, catalysing innovation, cultural synergies, and economic expansion. Italy, renowned for its rich heritage, dynamic economy, and strategic location in the Mediterranean’s core, has consistently served as a focal point for both professional and cultural interchange. Recognising the immense value that foreign professionals bring to its shores, Italy has developed a comprehensive framework for the recognition of both European and international professional qualifications. This initiative not only underscores Italy’s commitment to the European ideal of free movement but also signals its openness to global talent, contributing to the Country’s socio-economic dynamism.

The pursuit of professional recognition within the European Union and Italy is a complex endeavour that demands an extensive range of documentation, often including authenticated, legalized, and officially translated credentials, as well as detailed educational syllabi. This intricate process not only requires considerable effort to gather long-archived documents from educational institutions but also imposes a heavy financial toll on applicants.

However, there is a lesser-known aspect of this process that many interested parties are unaware of, mistakenly believing it to be straightforward when, in reality, it is not. As a matter of fact, the current legislative framework governing the recognition of professional qualifications is in need of refinement to reduce both procedural complexity and costs, thereby enhancing professional mobility within the EU. A streamlined process is essential for a more efficient, accessible, and equitable system. It would support the EU’s vision of a vibrant and inclusive labor market where professionals’ skills and qualifications are fully recognised and utilised.

In light of these challenges, there is a pressing demand for legislative reform to simplify the recognition process. This reform would not only ease the burden on individuals but also align with the EU’s goal of fostering a dynamic labor market enriched by a diverse range of skills and services.

However, obtaining recognition for a professional qualification in order to work in Italy represents a treacherous and complex terrain, making it essential to be guided by an expert to succeed in this endeavor.

If you’re considering relocating to Italy and need to have your foreign-obtained professional qualification recognised for work, this insight is tailored for you!

a collection of pictures of different people doing different jobs and needing a professional recognition

The Italian Legislative Framework: A Forefront Role in the Transposition of EU Directives

The recognition of professional qualifications in Italy serves as a catalyst for professional mobility, enabling individuals to pursue career opportunities across borders while enriching the Italian economy with diverse talents and skills. This process not only facilitates the personal and professional development of individuals but also contributes to the cultural and economic vitality of Italy, fostering an environment of innovation and excellence.

Furthermore, Italy’s inclusive approach to recognising international qualifications underscores its role as a global player in the professional domain, committed to leveraging global talent to enhance its competitive edge in the international arena.

The framework for the recognition of professional qualifications in Italy is shaped by a comprehensive legislative structure that meticulously aligns with the directives of the European Union, notably Directive 2005/36/EC as revised by Directive 2013/55/EU, while also accommodating qualifications obtained internationally. This legal architecture is aimed to ensure the fluid integration of professionals into the Italian workforce, upholding the stringent standards of professional conduct expected within the nation.

Italy’s forward-thinking approach in integrating EU directives into its national legislation highlights its dedication to enhancing the mobility of professionals. It achieved a pioneering milestone within the European Union by being the first Member Statess to embed Directive 2005/36/EC into its domestic legal framework, thereby establishing a benchmark for the recognition of professional qualifications. This initiative was further developed through Legislative Decree No. 206 of 9 November 2007, which effectively simplified the procedure for recognising professional qualifications attained within the EU and foreign countries.

Indeed, the Legislative Decree No. 206 of 9 November 2007 also addresses the recognition of professional qualifications obtained in third countries, outside the European Union, the European Economic Area, and Switzerland. This inclusion allows professionals who obtained their qualifications in countries not covered by the specific EU directives to have their qualifications recognised in Italy, subject to certain conditions and evaluations to ensure they meet the Italian standards for professional practice. The process for recognition from third countries typically involves more rigorous assessment, including possible additional requirements such as the validation of educational credentials, professional experience, and sometimes even the completion of adaptation periods or aptitude tests.

The legislative journey progressed with the implementation of Directive 2013/55/EU via Legislative Decree No. 15 of 28 January 2016, which introduced innovative measures to bolster the free movement of professionals among EU Member Statess. Specifically targeting EU citizens aiming to engage in regulated professions within Italy, this legislation provides a transparent and direct pathway for the recognition of qualifications obtained in any EU Member Statess, reinforcing Italy’s commitment to facilitating professional cross-border mobility and integration.


Regulated vs. Unregulated Professions: A Key Distinction

At the heart of professional recognition lies the essential differentiation between regulated professions and unregulated ones. Regulated professions are those for which access and practice are contingent upon possessing specific professional qualifications, as outlined by Directive 2005/36/EC and further refined by Directive 2013/55/EU. These directives encompass professions where the exercise of duties is directly or indirectly linked to the verification of qualifications against established standards.

Conversely, unregulated professions do not mandate passing a state exam or registration with a professional or regulatory association for practice. For these professions, the evaluation of foreign qualifications falls under the employer’s discretion, devoid of a prescriptive legislative framework dictating the necessity of specific educational credentials.

The precise delineation of “regulated” professions is encapsulated within Article 4 of the Legislative Decree No. 206, dated 9 November 2007. This section, under paragraph 1, letter a), meticulously outlines: “1) Activities or collective tasks permissible solely after registration with professional orders, rolls, colleges, or within registers and directories maintained by public administrations or entities, provided such registration is conditional upon possessing requisite professional qualifications or upon the verification of specific skills; 2) Employment relations, contingent upon legislative or regulatory stipulations, demanding professional qualifications for access; 3) The pursuit of activities under a professional title exclusively reserved for individuals with the requisite professional qualifications; 4) Activities within the healthcare domain, where the possession of a professional qualification critically influences compensation for services rendered or eligibility for reimbursement; 5) Professions undertaken by members of an association or entity as specified in Annex I.”

Furthermore, Legislative Decree 206/2007 introduces a concept of “regulated training,” denoting any identifiable training, compliant with prevailing legislation and intentionally directed towards the practice of a specific profession, achieved following a comprehensive course of study, a training phase, an internship, or professional practice.

Paragraph b) further refines the concept of “professional qualifications” to mean credentials validated by an educational certificate, a competency certificate as detailed in Article 19, paragraph 1, letter a), number 1), or by professional experience.

Notably, a professional qualification does not encompass credentials recognised merely through a decision by another Member States regarding a professional qualification previously acquired in Italy. In other words, the act of an EU country recognising an Italian-acquired professional qualification does not automatically grant it the status of a professional qualification in itself. It implies that recognition by another Member Statess is not sufficient to define or bestow the status of a professional qualification; the qualification must have been originally acquired according to the criteria and procedures established by Italian regulations or the competent authority in Italy.

Therefore, it is essential to clarify that a “professional qualification” refers to a credential enabling the bearer to conduct a particular activity within the State of issuance.

Continuing with definitions, the Decree in question at letter c) classifies as educational titles, “diplomas, certificates, and other credentials issued by a university or another authorised institution according to specific disciplines, attesting to the acquisition of professional training predominantly within the Community’s territory,” further noting that titles obtained from a third country are equally legally valid, assuming the title holders have accumulated, “through the actual practice of the profession, at least three years of experience in the Member States that recognised such title, as verified by the same.” This provision significantly broadens the legislative scope to accommodate individuals who have secured professional qualifications beyond the Eurounion’s boundaries, ensuring a comprehensive and inclusive approach.

In the complex framework of Italy’s professional sector, Legislative Decree No. 206 of 9 November 2007 emerges as a fundamental pillar, precisely defining the criteria and guidelines for the recognition of regulated professions.

By outlining clear guidelines for regulated professions and qualifications, Italy aims to uphold service quality and ethical standards across professional fields. This decree also acknowledges the diverse range of skills and knowledge that professionals from around the world bring to Italy, promoting a culture of excellence, inclusiveness, and ongoing development. This approach underlines the importance Italy places on expertise, learning, and striving for the best possible outcomes in professional sectors, simultaneously facilitating the integration of diverse professional talents into Italy’s dynamic economy.


The Essence of Regulated Professions

Article 4 of Decree 206/2007 meticulously defines the scope of regulated professions, providing a clear and detailed demarcation. It specifies that certain professions and activities are strictly limited to those who have completed the stringent requirements for registration with professional orders, colleges, or associations, which are diligently managed by public administrations or authorised bodies. This process of registration, serving as proof of their qualifications and expertise, acts as a critical safeguard. It ensures that only individuals possessing the requisite professional competencies are authorized to engage in practice.

The decree meticulously categorises professions into distinct facets, including those tethered to the healthcare sector, where the imperative for professional qualifications transcends beyond mere formality, influencing compensation and reimbursement processes. It also casts a spotlight on professions underpinned by membership in specific associations or bodies, underscoring the critical role of professional qualifications in upholding standards of excellence and safeguarding public interest.

Under the provisions and effects of Article 2 of Legislative Decree No. 206/2007, the scope of the decree governing the recognition process aimed at facilitating access to and the practice of regulated professions pertains to citizens of Member Statess who wish to offer their services on the national territory, whether as “employed or self-employed workers, including freelancers, in a regulated profession based on professional qualifications obtained in a Member States of the European Union that, in the state of origin, qualifies them to practice said profession.” It should be noted that this provision does not include citizens of Member Statess who possess professional qualifications not acquired in a State of the European Union.
The legislative Decree under consideration stipulates that the recognition of professional qualifications directly grants access to the corresponding profession for which individuals, as referred to in Article 2, paragraph 1, are qualified in the Member States of origin or provenance. It also allows the possibility to practice this profession under the same conditions set by the Italian legal system, provided they meet the specifically required criteria.

The practice of the profession under the right of establishment or as a free provision of services

Based on the Directive 2005/36/CE and its implementing Decree no. 206 of 9 November 2007, EU citizens may exercise their profession in another Member Statess either under the right of establishment or as a free provision of services. Professionals intending to practice a regulated profession in Italy indefinitely and enjoy the “right of establishment” must first request recognition of their professional qualifications obtained in their country of origin from the competent authority.
Service providers legally conducting an activity in one of the European Union Countries can engage in the same professional activity in Italy on a temporary and occasional basis, as a cross-border service provision. When a service provider first moves from the State where they are regularly established to Italy to practice a regulated profession, they are required to inform the competent Italian Authority with a preliminary declaration.

Notably, the concept of “free provision of services” lacks a distinct regulatory framework, being considered a residual notion compared to “the exercise of the profession under the right of establishment,” characterized mainly by the temporary and occasional provision of services. The Directive introduces the possibility for EU, European Economic Area (EEA), and Swiss citizens to temporarily exercise their profession in Italy without needing to obtain recognition of their professional qualifications, provided they have practiced the profession for at least one year in the last ten years if it is unregulated in their home country.

Specific information obligations are imposed on EU citizens wishing to practice their profession in Italy, requiring a “preliminary declaration” to the relevant Italian authority. This declaration, which assesses the temporary and occasional nature of the service, must consider the service’s duration, frequency, periodicity, and continuity. For professions influencing public health or safety, a preliminary check of qualifications may be necessary, while for unregulated professions in the country of origin but regulated in Italy, proof of at least two years of professional experience may be required.
Regarding the concept of regulated professions, the notion of “free provision of services” does not have its regulatory framework. In this context, the jurisprudence of the Court of Justice of the European Union considers this concept to be ancillary to that of “the exercise of the profession under the right of establishment,” characterised by the “temporariness” and “occasional” nature of the service provided.
The innovation introduced by Directive 2005/36/EC in the area of free provision of services, allows citizens legally established in another EU State, the European Economic Area (Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway), or Switzerland to practice their profession temporarily and occasionally without the need to obtain recognition of their professional qualifications under articles 9-15 of Legislative Decree no. 206 of 9 November 2007. If the profession is not regulated in the State of origin or provenance, the individual must demonstrate having practiced the same profession for at least one year in the last ten years.
EU citizens wishing to practice their profession in Italy are subject to specific informational obligations during their so-called “first movement” to the host State’s territory, which must be fulfilled by submitting a “preliminary declaration” to the competent Italian authority, detailing the type of service to be provided, including professional liability insurance coverage. This preliminary declaration must also consider the temporary and occasional nature of the service, which will be evaluated by the competent administration on a case-by-case basis.
This declaration is valid for one year for professions influencing the public health or safety sphere, while an 18-month validity period is anticipated for all other cases. At the end of the validity period, the provider must submit a new declaration if they intend to continue practicing their professional activity in Italy on a temporary and occasional basis.
If the profession poses a risk to public health or safety, the competent authority may conduct a preliminary check of the qualification before endorsing the activity under Article 11.
A different regime is provided for the exercise of professions unregulated in the country of origin but regulated in the host country, where the latter’s authorities may require the service provider to certify having practiced the activity for at least two years, not necessarily consecutively, within the last ten years. Additionally, the provider must present one or more certificates attesting to their professional competence relevant to their activity, along with any supplementary training titles they possess. An example of this case is the profession of sales agent or representative, which, while being part of the regulated professions in Italy, is not considered as such in France or Germany.
This verification is not required for professions subject to so-called automatic recognition – such as medical doctors, general care nurses, dentists, veterinarians, midwives, pharmacists, and architects – nor for those professions that imply recognition in conjunction with a specific professional experience acquired – such as those included in Annex IV of the Directive in question – nor even for professions for which recognition can be carried out based on “Common Training Frameworks” – for which, moreover, no specific regulation adopted by the European Commission has yet been envisaged – and in relation to the “Common Training Tests.”
The focal points regulated by Directive 2005/36/EC aimed at promoting the free movement of professionals and encouraging “associations and professional bodies or Member Statess to propose common platforms” are those provided by Article 16, which states that “Under certain conditions, and respecting the competence of Member Statess to decide the qualifications required for the exercise of professions within their territory, as well as the content and organisation of their respective education and professional training systems, and in accordance with EU law, particularly competition law, this Directive should consider such initiatives, favoring, in this context, a more automatic recognition within the general regime.” The Directive explains that professional associations intending to create common platforms – meaning a set of criteria that can encompass a wide range of substantial differences identified between the training requirements in at least two-thirds of the Member Statess, including those where the profession is regulated – should create such platforms both at the national and European levels. This set of criteria may include a range of requirements such as “supplementary training, an adaptation internship, an aptitude test, or a minimum prescribed level of professional practice, or a combination of these.”
The required aptitude test usually involves a written or practical and oral test or an oral examination based on the contents of the subjects established under paragraph 1, of Article 23 of Legislative Decree 206/2007.

The Pathway to Professional Qualifications

Exploring further into Decree 206/2007, we find a detailed analysis of “regulated training,” highlighting a dedication to cultivating a thoroughly educated professional workforce. This concept encapsulates any form of training that is distinctly crafted to pave the pathway towards proficiency in a specific profession. Whether it is the culmination of an academic journey, a period of practical training, an internship, or professional practice, the essence of regulated training lies in its ability to mold professionals who are not just knowledgeable, but also adept and ethical practitioners.

Parallelly, the decree delineates “professional qualifications” with a keen eye for detail. It defines these qualifications as the culmination of rigorous training and experience, encapsulated within diplomas, certificates of competence, or an accumulation of professional experience. Noteworthy is the Decree’s stance on qualifications recognised by other Member Statess — a gesture of Italy’s openness to international expertise, yet underscored by a commitment to maintaining its esteemed standards of professional practice.


The Process of Recognition

For regulated professions, the Italian system mandates a comprehensive evaluation process, facilitating direct access to the profession for which the applicant is qualified in their home country. This ensures that professionals can exercise their vocation under identical conditions to their Italian counterparts, provided they meet Italy’s specific professional requirements.

This framework not only enshrines the principle of professional mobility across the European Union but also showcases Italy’s openness to international talent. By distinguishing between regulated and unregulated professions and setting forth a structured pathway for recognition, Italy reinforces its position as a welcoming destination for professionals worldwide, proud to contribute their expertise to the vibrant Italian economy.

At its core, the administrative process for recognising foreign professional qualifications in Italy represents a careful balance between strict regulatory standards and an openness to professional diversity. This approach underscores Italy’s commitment to high professional standards alongside its recognition of the varied talents that enrich its socio-economic landscape.

Exploring the framework for professional recognition within the European Union, particularly through Italy’s Legislative Decree No. 206 of 9 November 2007, reveals a thoughtfully constructed system aimed at enabling the smooth mobility and establishment of professionals across Member Statess. This legislation outlines three distinct recognition regimes, each crafted to cater to the different methods through which individuals may pursue the validation and utilization of their qualifications in Italy.


Simplifying the Complex Landscape of Professional Recognition

The Decree 206/2007 introduces a tripartite system that categorises the recognition of professional qualifications into three distinct regimes, each addressing different facets of professional integration into the Italian workforce.


General Recognition Regime

The general recognition regime (Articles 18-26) is non-automatic and hinges on a comparative analysis of the educational pathways and qualifications from two Member Statess. If a “substantial difference” in qualification levels is identified, the recognition may be contingent upon completing compensatory measures, such as an aptitude test or an adaptation internship, not exceeding three years. Essential for the Ministerial Decree recognition issuance is the assurance that the qualification was conferred by a competent authority and denotes a level of qualification at least equivalent to the one immediately preceding the required level by the national legislation. Notably, access to regulated professions in Italy can also be granted if the applicant, meeting the specified requirements, has engaged in full-time professional activity for two years within the last decade.


Common and Specific Discipline for Automatic Recognition

The segments of Legislative Decree No. 206/2007, specifically Articles 31 to 58, establish a dual disciplinary structure for the automatic recognition of professional qualifications. This framework encompasses common guidelines applicable across various professions as well as specific regulations tailored to individual professions that qualify for automatic recognition. This detailed approach aims to facilitate the smooth integration of professionals from the European Union, European Economic Area, and Switzerland into the Italian workforce, provided they meet the set minimum training requirements.

One of the Decree’s pivotal features is its provision for exceptional cases under Article 10 of the Directive. This section allows for the application of the general recognition regime in situations that are particularly unique or where the standard criteria for automatic recognition are not fully met by the applicant. Such flexibility is instrumental in accommodating professionals whose qualifications or circumstances do not neatly fit into the conventional criteria but who nevertheless possess the skills and expertise required to practice their profession in Italy.

This comprehensive regulatory mechanism underscores Italy’s commitment to upholding the principles of the European Union’s Directive on the recognition of professional qualifications. By balancing the need for uniform standards across Member Statess with the flexibility to address individual cases on their merits, Italy fosters a conducive environment for the mobility of professionals. This approach not only enriches the Italian labor market with diverse talents and expertise but also ensures that the integration of EU professionals does not compromise the high standards of practice and professionalism that are hallmark to the Italian professional landscape.

In essence, through the detailed provisions of Articles 31 to 58, Italy demonstrates its dedication to the facilitation of professional mobility within the European framework. It lays down a clear, structured path for professionals seeking to establish their careers in Italy, thereby contributing to the broader objectives of the European Union in terms of enhancing professional mobility and cooperation among its Member Statess, effectively bridging the gap between maintaining national standards of professional practice and diversity that comes with the free movement of professionals across Europe.


Automatic Recognition Regime Based on Professional Experience

The automatic recognition regime for training qualifications, established by European legislation and incorporated into Italian law, particularly through Legislative Decree No. 206 of November 9, 2007, simplifies the process for recognising professional qualifications for certain regulated professions among members of the European Union, the European Economic Area, and Switzerland.

This regime applies to specific professions for which minimum training conditions have been established at the European level, thereby ensuring that professionals qualified in one Member States can practice their profession in another Member States without undergoing further evaluation procedures or examinations. The professions covered by this regime include, among others, medical doctors, general care nurses, dentists, pharmacists, veterinarians, midwives, and architects.

To benefit from automatic recognition, training qualifications must meet specific standards of quality and duration of the training course, as defined in the relevant European Directives, particularly Directive 2005/36/EC as amended by Directive 2013/55/EU. These Directives establish the criteria and conditions for the mutual recognition of professional qualifications between Member Statess, aiming to promote the free movement of professionals within the EU.

This regime (Articles 27-30) relies on professional experience acquired in the country of origin or provenance, covering artisanal, commercial, or industrial activities detailed in Annex IV of the Decree. Automatic recognition is granted when the professional’s experience aligns with the specific conditions outlined for each category, such as the duration and type of professional experience, and the nature of employment. To qualify, professionals must document their title and experience with a EU Certificate issued by the competent authority of the origin State.

Articles 27 to 30 of the Legislative Decree No. 206/2007 serve as a crucial legal framework for those seeking automatic recognition of their professional qualifications. Article 27, titled “Requirements in terms of professional experience,” stipulates that for activities listed in Annex IV, which require general, commercial, or professional knowledge and skills, professional recognition is contingent upon proving actual practice of the said activity in another Member States, as detailed in Articles 28, 29, and 30. Article 28, titled “Conditions for the recognition of activities listed in List I of Annex IV,” sets forth conditions based on years of practice as a self-employed individual or company executive in a specific field. It specifies that for activities in List I of Annex IV, the activity must have been previously practised if the beneficiary can demonstrate having received at least three years of training certified by a Member States or deemed fully valid by a competent professional body, along with a list of conditions outlined in subsequent paragraphs and those in Articles 29 and 30.

Amidst the streamlining of regulations aimed at dismantling barriers to entry and facilitating the free movement of professionals within the internal market, coupled with the joint effort to promote the mobility of Union professionals, the intervention carried out on August 13, 2021, by the Department for European Policies notably stands out. This initiative involved dispatching a circular to all central and regional administrations to provide operational guidelines for the correct application of Legislative Decree No. 142/2020, implementing Directive 2018/958 on the proportionality test for regulated professions.

In this context, the recommendation of the Council of the European Union dated November 26, 2018, is particularly noteworthy. It concerns the “promotion of automatic mutual recognition of higher education diplomas, upper secondary education, and training qualifications, and the outcomes of learning periods abroad.” At point (1), it reiterates the principle that mobility for learning and training purposes enhances knowledge, skills, competencies, and experiences, in addition to enriching personal and social skills and raising awareness of “cultural themes, which are crucial for active participation in society and the labor market, as well as for promoting European identity.”

Furthermore, as part of the identity commitment pursued by the European Commission through education and culture, it outlines “a vision for the creation of a European Education Area by 2025, where learning, studying, and research will not be hindered by borders, thanks also to the removal of obstacles to the recognition of qualifications, both at school and higher education levels.”


Requirements for Automatic Recognition

The automatic recognition process requires the professional to submit an application for recognition to the competent Italian authority (relevant Ministry depending on the professional field), accompanied by their training certificate and any other documentation necessary to demonstrate compliance with the regulatory requirements for the profession of interest.

In the case of automatic recognition, the professional gains the right to practice their profession in Italy under the same conditions as qualified Italian citizens, thus ensuring seamless professional integration into the Italian labour market.

The automatic recognition regime for training qualifications, as stipulated by Legislative Decree No. 206 of November 9, 2007, applies to the following sectoral professions:

  1. Medical Doctors
  2. General Care Nurses
  3. Dentists
  4. Veterinarians
  5. Midwives
  6. Pharmacists
  7. Architects

These professions benefit from an automatic recognition regime for training qualifications due to the harmonisation of minimum training conditions at the European level. The regime ensures that professionals qualified in a Member States of the European Union, the European Economic Area, or Switzerland can practice their profession in another Member States without further evaluation procedures or examinations, based solely on the recognition of their training qualifications.

This automatic recognition significantly facilitates the mobility of professionals within the EU, thus promoting access to cross-border employment opportunities in accordance with the high professional standards set by the relevant European directives.

  1. Professional Experience: Article 27 specifies that professional recognition for activities listed in Annex IV is contingent upon the demonstration of actual practice of the activity in another Member States. This means that the professional must have practiced the profession for a specified period, proving they possess the necessary knowledge and skills.
  2. Specific Conditions: Article 28 outlines the conditions for recognising professional activities listed in List I of Annex IV, highlighting the importance of work experience as a self-employed individual or company manager in a specific sector. Additionally, a minimum of three years of training, certified by a certificate recognised by a Member States or deemed valid by a competent professional body, is required.


Automatic Recognition Procedure

Let’s outline the key steps of the automatic recognition process.

  • The professional submits a recognition application to the competent Italian authority, including documentation that certifies their professional experience and, if necessary, the specific training received.
  • The application must be accompanied by a EU Certificate issued by the competent authority of the home Member States, certifying the professional’s experience and training.
  • Further evaluation of the professional’s qualifications or skills is not required unless doubts arise regarding the veracity or adequacy of the documents submitted.


Possible Outcomes

  • Direct Recognition: if all requirements are met and the documentation is complete and compliant, the Italian authority proceeds with the direct recognition of the professional qualification, allowing the professional to practice the activity in Italy.
  • Additional Verification: in exceptional cases, if doubts arise about the provided documentation, further verification or clarification may be requested.

The automatic recognition under Articles 27-30 of Legislative Decree No. 206/2007 aims to simplify and expedite the process of recognising professional qualifications among EU Member Statess, thus promoting the mobility of professionals and access to new job opportunities in compliance with European regulations.

It is worth noting that the Decree-Law No. 18 of 2020, as amended by Law No. 27 of April 24, 2020, has introduced a significant change in the Italian medical education and professional accreditation system. Specifically, Article 102, paragraph 1, has established the enabling degree (laurea abilitante) for the practice of Medicine and Surgery, effectively eliminating the need for a separate state examination or licensing exam traditionally required for medical practitioners to qualify for practice.

This enabling degree in Medicine and Surgery now allows for the automatic recognition of the medical qualification across EU countries, the European Economic Area (EEA), and Switzerland. This means that holders of the Italian enabling degree can practice medicine in these countries without undergoing additional exams or recognition procedures typically required for medical qualifications obtained outside of these jurisdictions.

However, it is crucial for medical graduates seeking to practice in another EU/EEA country or Switzerland to understand that while the degree facilitates automatic recognition, they must still comply with any country-specific registration or documentation requirements. These may include language proficiency tests, registration with a local medical board or council, and adherence to any other legal or professional standards applicable in the host country.



How the Recognition Process Works and Possible Outcomes

The process of recognising a foreign professional qualification in Italy, as outlined by Legislative Decree No. 206/2007, follows a structured path aimed at assessing the equivalence between qualifications obtained abroad and those recognised at the national level. This process unfolds in several stages and can result in various outcomes following the investigation. Here is an overview of how the process unfolds and what the possible outcomes can be


Stages of the Recognition Process

  1. Application Submission: the interested professional must submit an application for recognition to the competent Italian authority (The relevant ministry depending on the professional field), attaching all the necessary documents that certify their professional qualification, work experience, and, if required, specific training.
  2. Document Evaluation: the competent authority reviews the submitted documents to verify the authenticity of the qualifications and the adequacy of the training and professional experience against the standards required in Italy for practicing the profession.
  3. Equivalence Assessment: the equivalence of the foreign qualification with the Italian one is evaluated, considering both the educational pathway and the professional experience gained.
  4. Compensatory Measures (if necessary): if there are substantial differences between the foreign training and professional experience compared to those required in Italy, the professional may be asked to undergo compensatory measures such as an adaptation internship, a supplementary training course, or an aptitude test.


Possible Outcomes after the Investigation

Once the competent Ministry for the discipline in which the professional seeks recognition has concluded the investigatory phase, the following outcomes may occur: – A recognition decree; – A recognition decree conditional upon passing a compensatory measure; – A denial order; Partial Access to exercise the profession.

  1. Acceptance of the Application: if the qualification is recognized as equivalent or after the completion of any compensatory measures, the authority issues a positive decision, allowing access to the profession in Italy.
  2. Acceptance with Compensatory Measures: the application may be accepted on the condition that the applicant successfully completes the indicated compensatory measures to bridge any identified educational or professional gaps.
  3. Rejection of the Application: in case of a substantial mismatch between the foreign qualification and the Italian requirements, or if the professional does not pass the compensatory measures, the application can be rejected.
  4. Partial Access: in certain cases, partial access to the profession may be granted, limited to specific professional activities for which equivalence or adequacy of training and experience has been demonstrated.

The European citizen who intends to permanently carry out their activity in Italy must therefore submit an application for the recognition of their professional qualification to the competent Italian authority, accompanied by a list of documents specified in the note provided by the relevant Ministry.

The Italian Authority responsible for accepting the application must, within 30 days of receipt, notify the applicant that the recognition application has been received and any missing documents needed to complete the investigation phase. Within 120 days of receiving the request, the appointed administration must conclude the investigative phase of the procedure for the recognition of professional qualifications, issuing a duly motivated decision. In relation to the recognition request, the administration in charge may make the following decisions:

– Acceptance of the application subject to the successful completion of compensatory measures by the provider, should substantial differences be identified between the applicant’s training and the equivalent training required by the Italian system, as well as between the professional activities carried out in the country of origin and those required for practicing the same profession in Italy, which cannot be compensated through professional experience and/or additional training;

– Rejection of the application in case of a substantial mismatch between the profession practiced in the country of origin and that regulated in Italy, or in the absence of the requirements set by the directive on recognition covered in the preceding pages.

If the administrative procedure aimed at obtaining a judgment of equivalence between professional qualifications has a negative outcome, the competent administration might assign the professional compensatory measures, such as an adaptation internship or an aptitude test, necessary to fill the educational and professional gaps.

However, if the judgment of equivalence is positive, the procedure concludes with the adoption of the administrative recognition decree issued by the Ministry competent for the professional area in question, resulting in the issuance of authorisation to exercise the professional activity, which can be carried out under the same conditions provided by the host state’s legislation for their citizens. This decree will constitute a legally valid title for registration in professional registers or associations for the exercise of regulated professions, in addition to offering their holders the benefit of practicing the profession under the professional title stipulated by the legislation of the State of establishment.


Grant of Partial Access to the Profession Regime

Among the possible outcomes of the recognition request for the permanent exercise of the profession, the case of granting partial access should also be considered.

The Grant of a Partial Access Regime to the Profession is a mechanism within the professional qualification recognition framework, designed to facilitate the mobility of professionals across borders while maintaining high standards of practice within the host country. This regime allows professionals who have obtained their qualifications in one Member Statess to exercise a specific part of their profession in another Member Statess, even if the full scope of their profession is not recognised due to substantial differences in the scope of practice or training requirements between the two countries.

Under this regime, professionals are granted the right to perform only those activities for which they have been specifically trained and for which their qualifications are recognized as equivalent by the host country. This approach ensures that the host country’s regulatory standards and public safety requirements are upheld, while also providing professionals with the opportunity to utilize their skills and contribute to the local economy.

The partial access regime is particularly relevant in sectors where professional activities can be clearly delineated and where it is possible to isolate certain tasks that do not compromise the overall integrity and safety of the profession. It is a tailored solution that balances the need for regulatory protection with the benefits of professional mobility and diversity within the European Union and beyond.

Implementing the partial access regime requires a careful assessment of the applicant’s qualifications and experience against the regulated activities of the profession in the host country. It may involve additional verification processes or the imposition of specific conditions under which the professional activities may be carried out.

Ultimately, the Grant of a Partial Access Regime to the Profession represents a pragmatic approach to the complex issue of professional qualification recognition, offering a pathway for professionals to engage in their field of expertise while respecting the regulatory frameworks of the host country. This regime underscores the ongoing efforts to enhance professional mobility within the EU, contributing to a more integrated and dynamic European labor market.

However, it should be noted that the mode of professional recognition of partial access does not apply to professionals benefiting from automatic recognition.

The competent Italian administration may grant partial access after evaluating the specific case of the applicant, provided the following conditions are met:

  • The differences between the professional activity legally carried out in the country of origin or provenance of the Union and the regulated profession in Italy must be such that the application of compensatory measures does not allow the applicant to complete the training program required by Italian legislation for full access to the exercise of the regulated profession;
  • The professional activity can be objectively separated from other activities related to the regulated profession in Italy;
  • The professional is fully qualified to exercise in the state of origin or provenance the professional activity for which they request partial access.

In the event that the administration grants partial access, the professional will be authorized to carry out the activity with the professional title of the state of the Union of provenance.

Similar to what is provided for citizens of the Union states, the professional qualification obtained by a citizen from a third country, who temporarily or permanently intends to exercise their profession in Italy, is subject to verification by the state administrations, in order to establish the equivalence between foreign and Italian titles.

In this regard, Article 49 of the Presidential Decree of 31 August 1999, No. 394, provides that “Foreign citizens, regularly residing in Italy who intend to register with professional orders, associations, and special registers established at competent administrations, within the quotas defined in accordance with Article 3, paragraph 4, of the consolidated text and of this regulation, if in possession of a title enabling the exercise of a profession, obtained in a country not belonging to the European Union, can request its recognition for the purpose of practicing in Italy, as self-employed or employed workers, in the corresponding professions.”

Furthermore, Article 1-bis. of the same D.P.R. specifies that “the recognition of the title can also be requested by foreigners not residing in Italy. The administrations concerned, upon receiving the application, will proceed as within their competence. Entry into Italy for work, whether self-employed or employed, in the field of health professions is, however, conditioned on the recognition of the educational qualification carried out by the competent Ministry.”

In Member Statess where the profession intended to be practiced is not regulated, the holder of the professional qualification does not need to request its recognition and may freely practice it under the same conditions valid for the citizens of the Member Statess in question. However, it will be the professional’s responsibility to demonstrate that they have practiced the profession in the Member Statess of origin. To simplify a matter as complex as the recognition of titles and professional qualifications, it can be stated that under Legislative Decree No. 206 of 9 November 2007, three types of regimes govern “professional recognitions.”


European Citizens vs Professional Recognition in Italy

For European citizens aiming to practice regulated professions in Italy, the recognition process is facilitated by a clear and methodical procedure. This process requires applicants to compile and submit a comprehensive dossier. The necessary documents include a copy of an identity card or an equivalent document, attestations of competence or formal qualifications relevant to the profession, detailed descriptions of the training courses undertaken, and certificates issued by competent authorities. These certificates must outline whether the profession is regulated in the country of origin, the specific requirements for obtaining the professional qualification, and the level of the qualification in accordance with European standards.

This thorough evaluation ensures that professionals seeking to work in regulated fields, such as healthcare, engineering, and architecture, are properly vetted and meet Italy’s high standards. By demanding such detailed documentation, Italy upholds the integrity of its professional sectors and guarantees that individuals entering these fields possess the requisite knowledge, skills, and qualifications. This procedure not only maintains the quality of professional services within the country but also supports the seamless mobility of professionals across the European Union, ensuring that their qualifications are recognized and valued across Member Statesss.European citizens aiming to work permanently in Italy must submit an application for the recognition of their professional qualifications to the relevant Italian authority. The application must include the following documents:

  • A copy of an identity card or an equivalent document verifying nationality.
  • Copies of certificates of competency or documentation of formal qualifications that grant access to the profession, and where applicable, a certificate of professional experience.
  • Comprehensive details of their educational program, including subjects studied, examinations taken, and the duration of the course.
  • A certificate from the competent authority in the country of origin indicating whether the profession is regulated there, the prerequisites for obtaining the professional qualification, and the qualification’s level pursuant to Article 11 of Directive 2005/36/EC.
  • A certificate detailing the nature and length of their professional experience for professions outlined in Annex IV of the Directive.

Additionally, for sector-specific professions such as doctors, general care nurses, dentists, veterinary surgeons, midwives, pharmacists, and architects, further documentation is required.


Professional Practice in Unregulated Professions

Within the European Union, the absence of stringent regulatory requirements for certain professions means that individuals holding qualifications in these areas can move and work across Member Statess with relative ease. This not only enhances professional mobility but also significantly contributes to the enrichment of the host country’s workforce with diverse skills and experiences.

In Member Statess where a profession is not regulated, holders of professional qualifications are not required to seek formal recognition to practice. They can freely exercise their profession under the same conditions as nationals of that Member Statess. However, the onus lies on the professional to prove that they have practiced the profession in their home country, ensuring their expertise is grounded in practical experience.

However, this flexibility comes with the prerequisite that professionals must substantiate their competency and experience in their field, especially when transitioning to a Member States where their profession is not regulated. For instance, a marketing consultant or a web designer looking to practice in a new country must be prepared to demonstrate their expertise through documented work history, portfolios, and references from previous engagements. This requirement ensures that while regulatory barriers are minimised, the quality and reliability of professional services remain uncompromised.

Moreover, this system encourages professionals to engage in continuous learning and adaptability, aligning their skills with the needs and standards of the host country’s market. It prompts a proactive approach to professional development, urging individuals to stay abreast of industry trends, technological advancements, and best practices. This not only facilitates their integration into the new professional environment but also amplifies their contribution to the host country’s economic and social fabric.


Extending Beyond the EU: Recognising International Qualifications

A pivotal aspect of the Decree 206/2007 is its acknowledgment and validation of qualifications obtained from beyond the European Union’s borders. This inclusive approach signifies Italy’s recognition of the global professional community, valuing the diversity and richness that international professionals bring to its soil. By equating the legal value of qualifications from third countries with those obtained within the EU — contingent upon the demonstration of substantial professional experience — Italy reaffirms its stance as a nation that is both welcoming and

Italy’s commitment to professional integration extends beyond the European Union, embracing professionals from non-EU countries seeking to contribute their skills and expertise. The recognition of international qualifications involves a meticulous assessment process that evaluates the equivalence of foreign qualifications with Italian standards. This process is vital for ensuring that professionals possess the requisite knowledge and competencies to practice their professions at the highest levels of excellence within Italy.

The procedure for the recognition of international qualifications involves several key steps, including the verification of the authenticity of the qualifications, an assessment of the educational and professional background against Italian standards, and, in some cases, the completion of compensatory measures such as additional training or examinations. This comprehensive approach ensures that the integration of international professionals into the Italian job market is based on a foundation of mutual respect, recognition of qualifications, and the assurance of professional competence.


Sector-Specific Considerations

For certain regulated professions, the process for recognition is further tailored to address specific sectoral requirements. Professions such as medicine, pharmacy, architecture, and engineering are subject to additional scrutiny, given their critical importance to public health, safety, and welfare. In these cases, professionals may be required to undergo a period of professional adaptation or pass a proficiency examination to demonstrate their ability to meet the rigorous standards set forth by Italian regulatory bodies.

The Directive 2005/36/EC and its transposition through Legislative Decree No. 206 of 9 November 2007, lay the groundwork not only European Union but also for foreign citizens to practice their profession in another Member Statess, either under the right of establishment or as part of the free provision of services. This framework facilitates professionals who wish to work indefinitely in Italy in a regulated profession to seek prior recognition of their professional qualifications from the competent authority in their country of origin.

The Directive also encourages the development of common platforms by professional associations or Member Statess to facilitate automatic recognition under the general system. These platforms may include additional requirements such as supplementary training or an aptitude test.


The requirement of proficiency in the Italian language for the practice of regulated professions

It should be noted that for the practice of many regulated professions, a good command of the Italian language is a mandatory requirement. Proficiency in Italian goes beyond being just a skill; it’s a crucial legal prerequisite deeply embedded in the process of professional recognition. This requirement reflects the nation’s commitment to upholding high standards of communication and comprehension within its professional workforce.

Mastery of the Italian language isn’t merely advantageous; it’s a legal mandate for individuals seeking official recognition of their qualifications and aiming to obtain the essential Ministerial decree necessary to practice their profession in Italy. Achieving proficiency in Italian is intertwined with the legal aspects of professional establishment in the country. It’s a journey mandated by law, where fluency in Italian isn’t optional but rather a foundational requirement—a pivotal legal criterion enabling access to professional practice.

For international or European professionals, this requirement extends beyond personal development to become a compulsory legal obligation. It signifies a significant commitment not only to embracing the Italian language but also to complying with the stringent legal frameworks that uphold the high standards of various professions within Italy’s culturally rich context. Demonstrating proficiency in the language serves not only as a means of communication but also as a gateway to professional excellence, especially in critical sectors like healthcare and education.

The Italian government, through Legislative Decree 206/2007, underscores the importance of language proficiency for professionals seeking recognition of their qualifications in Italy. This requirement transcends mere procedural formality; it’s essential for maintaining quality and ensuring safety in professional practices, particularly in crucial fields such as healthcare and education. In conclusion, Italian language proficiency for professional recognition isn’t merely a bureaucratic hurdle but a vital component of professional development and integration into Italian work culture.

For healthcare professionals aiming to practice in Italy, regulations unequivocally stipulate the necessity of proficiency in the Italian language as an indispensable requirement. This legal mandate transcends mere formalities, highlighting the essential role of language proficiency in patient care.

The need for Italian language proficiency in healthcare is multifaceted. Firstly, it ensures effective and accurate communication between medical practitioners and their patients. In a field where every word holds significant implications for diagnosis and treatment, the capacity to converse, clarify, and counsel in Italian is paramount. Language barriers can lead to misunderstandings or misinterpretations, resulting in erroneous diagnoses, inappropriate treatments, or even medical errors – outcomes that are unacceptable in healthcare.

Moreover, Italian proficiency extends beyond the technical aspects of healthcare delivery. It encompasses the ability to empathise, understand, and establish meaningful connections with patients on a personal level. Effective communication in healthcare involves more than conveying medical information; it entails building trust, comprehending cultural nuances, and offering comfort during vulnerable moments. When healthcare professionals communicate in the patient’s native language, it fosters familiarity and reassurance, essential elements for patient-centered care.

In addition to patient interaction, Italian language skills are crucial for seamless collaboration with colleagues, multidisciplinary teams, and other healthcare providers. The dynamic healthcare environment often necessitates swift, precise, and clear communication. Whether discussing patient care, understanding treatment protocols, or engaging in professional development, the ability to articulate and comprehend in Italian is indispensable for effective integration and teamwork.

Furthermore, proficiency in Italian enables healthcare professionals to stay updated on local medical guidelines, legal requirements, and ethical standards, typically communicated in Italian. This knowledge is vital for compliance and the continual enhancement of practices aligned with national healthcare standards.

Italian language proficiency for healthcare professionals in Italy goes beyond regulatory compliance. It is a fundamental aspect of professional competence, closely linked to patient safety, care quality, and effective clinical practice. As the healthcare landscape evolves, effective communication in Italian will remain a valuable asset, ensuring that professionals deliver care that is not only proficient but also compassionate and culturally sensitive.


Conditions for the Recognition of Professional Qualification

In accordance with and for the effects falling within the scope of application provided for in paragraph 1 of Article 18 of Legislative Decree No. 206/2007, for access to or the exercise of a regulated profession, such as that of a doctor, architect, nurse, and all other professions not included in Titles III and IV of this decree, “professional qualifications prescribed by another Member States to access and exercise the corresponding profession are admitted for professional recognition.” The certificates of professional competence or educational qualifications admitted for recognition must satisfy the following condition: they must be issued by a competent authority in another Member States, designated according to the legislative, regulatory, or administrative provisions of that State.

Furthermore, paragraph 2 of Article 21 of Legislative Decree No. 206/2007 stipulates that “access to and the exercise of the regulated profession are also permitted for professionals who have engaged in their activity full-time for one year or, if part-time, for a total duration equivalent, over the previous ten years, in another Member States that does not regulate it and have one or more certificates of competence or one or more educational titles” attesting to the issuance by a competent authority in another Member States in confirmation of the preparation for the exercise of the profession.

Moreover, the year of professional experience is not necessary if the training qualifications possessed by the applicant denote regulated training and education.


Final considerations

Italy’s comprehensive framework for the recognition of professional qualifications, encompassing both European and international credentials, embodies its commitment to fostering professional mobility, cultural exchange, and economic growth. By facilitating the integration of foreign professionals into its workforce, Italy not only enriches its own socio-economic landscape but also contributes to the broader objectives of the European Union and the global community. This initiative reflects Italy’s recognition of the invaluable contributions that foreign professionals can make to its economy and society, reinforcing its status as a vibrant, welcoming, and dynamic country for professionals from around the world.

The recognition of a foreign professional qualification in Italy is a process that values skills acquired abroad while also safeguarding national professional standards. The outcomes of the investigation aim to ensure that every professional operates in accordance with the regulations and needs of the Italian labor market.

In reflecting upon the current state of legislation concerning the recognition of professional qualifications, it becomes evident that the path towards simplification remains a work in progress. The administrative process necessitates the submission of a comprehensive application, including a plethora of documents such as authenticated, legalized, and officially translated certifications, alongside detailed course syllabi for the qualification sought. Such requirements often pose a significant challenge for candidates, especially when these documents are not readily available and must be procured from academic or professional institutions, sometimes years after the completion of their studies.

Moreover, the financial burden associated with preparing the necessary documentation can be substantial. There is a clear and pressing need for a more streamlined legislative framework that could facilitate the process of professional qualification recognition. This would not only alleviate the procedural and financial burdens on individuals seeking recognition but also enhance the mobility and integration of professionals across borders.

The creation of a cohesive and simplified legislative framework is paramount for ensuring that the process of recognizing professional qualifications aligns more closely with the principles of efficiency, accessibility, and fairness. Such reforms would significantly contribute to the European Union’s objective of fostering a dynamic and inclusive labor market, where professionals can fully leverage their skills and qualifications, thereby enriching the diversity and quality of services available across Member Statess. In conclusion, while the current legislation represents a foundation for the recognition of professional qualifications, there is a compelling case for its evolution towards a more streamlined and less cumbersome process, thereby better serving the needs of professionals and the broader objectives of the European labor market.

To encourage institutional initiatives aimed at creating synergy between research, technological and scientific innovation on one hand, and the international mobility of Italian and foreign students, researchers, and professionals intending to settle in Italy after completing training abroad on the other, there is an urgent need to allow public administrations to conclude the procedures for recognizing degrees and qualifications more agilely, reducing the burdensomeness and complexity that characterizes them.

In this context, the 2018 recommendation of the Council of the European Union is notable, aimed at the commitment by Member Statess to allow automatic mutual recognition of academic degrees, implementing operational guidelines that move in this direction. The Council indeed hopes that the implementation of state-of-the-art technologies, such as blockchain, can encourage Member Statess to undertake the necessary activities to enable the feasibility of automatic mutual recognition of foreign degrees and to create cutting-edge infrastructures for the registration and sharing of information among all involved institutions.

The Council Recommendation of 26 November 2018 specifically targets the automatic mutual recognition of higher education and upper secondary education and training qualifications, as well as outcomes of learning periods abroad within the EU. This initiative is part of a broader effort to enhance mobility and learning opportunities across Member Statess by simplifying the recognition process for educational qualifications. By 2025, Member Statess are encouraged to establish frameworks to achieve this automatic mutual recognition for the purpose of further learning, without necessitating separate recognition procedures. This is aimed at ensuring that qualifications acquired in one Member States are recognized at the same level in others, facilitating access to further studies and recognizing study periods abroad automatically.

While this recommendation primarily focuses on academic qualifications, it also indirectly supports the mobility of professionals by facilitating easier access to further education and training that may be required for professional development or qualification upgrades.

Moreover, the recommendation draws attention to key concepts in this regard, such as the permeability and exchange between the sectors of higher education and vocational training, which must be valued and encouraged, not hindered and overwhelmed by complicated bureaucratic red tape, in order to maintain high incentives for the mobility of students and professionals. This is a primary goal in support of the dissemination of knowledge, skills, competences, and experiences crucial for facilitating their entry into a globalized labor market and active integration into the social fabric.

To address the issues inherent in the procedures for recognizing foreign degrees and qualifications, the Council has suggested that Member Statess present a mapping of obstacles encountered in existing recognition practices, promoting the exchange of best practices and successfully resolved cases in each country, in addition to encouraging multi-sector collaboration involving Member Statess, stakeholders, public administrations, and international organizations such as the Council of Europe and UNESCO. A desired full collaboration in this regard is dictated by the need to ensure the full implementation of the goals set by the Bologna Process for higher education within the Union, the Lisbon Convention on the recognition of qualifications, and those set by the Copenhagen process for education and vocational training.

To achieve this ambitious goal, firstly, it would be advisable to foresee the approval of a unified text on the procedures for recognizing degrees and qualifications, capable of systematically unifying and updating a particularly heterogeneous and fragmented sectoral legislative framework, which is often difficult for interested parties to comprehend. They face the arduous path of degree recognition not only in terms of time and difficulty but also in terms of the economic costs involved.

Furthermore, it would be desirable for this unified legislative framework to be integrated and supported by operational methodologies for the assessment and evaluation of foreign degrees that can be shared by both educational institutions and public administrations, national and foreign, in order to create as systematic cooperation as possible for achieving common goals, such as that of automatic degree recognition within the European Union Member Statess.

Towards this end, defining standardized best practices for all stakeholders in this complex supply chain, based on cutting-edge technological and digital resources – of which blockchain represents just an initial step in this direction – could be a possible useful solution. This would simplify the procedures for verifying and recognizing degrees, for enrollment in study courses, access to public employment, and the world of the labor market in general, in full respect of a streamlined and easily applicable legislative discipline in response to the currently in force one.

The European Commission has also entered the field, with its note “Strengthening European Identity through Education and Culture”, presenting a project for the creation of a European Education Area by 2025, within which the paradigms of study, research, and learning will be freed from territorial limits, thanks to the removal of the critical issues related to the recognition of secondary and tertiary education degrees.

The Council Recommendation commits EU Member Statess to a political pledge to implement automatic recognition by 2025, fostering mutual trust in educational systems and aiding Member Statess in enhancing recognition processes to boost learning mobility.

This recommendation in higher education leverages advancements achieved in forums like the Bologna Process and the Lisbon Recognition Convention, alongside multilateral agreements among EU Member Statess groups—for instance, the Benelux Decision on the automatic recognition of higher education qualifications and the Baltic countries’ agreement.

Furthermore, it encourages the expanded use of current tools aiding in the recognition of qualifications and learning periods abroad outcomes, including Europass, the European Qualifications Framework, the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS), the Diploma Supplement, and the European Credit System for Vocational Education and Training, among others.

The widespread idea is to create a shared education space, where transparency, comparability, and transferability of academic degrees prevail, benefiting from easier recognition procedures, which today unjustly burden the shoulders of students and workers, hindering their full professional affirmation and realization.

The goal of establishing a solid European identity in the field of education is not a simple commitment. It presupposes, in fact, a cession of identity interests by each Member States, in the effort to recognize as legally valid the degrees issued at the conclusion of training courses followed in other states, as well as qualitatively and formally equivalent to their own.

Such an effort is sustainable only in a climate of mutual trust, built with the perspective of balancing the benefits that such provision brings, with a relinquishment of an identitarian attachment to one’s cultural training traditions, in favor of enriching the social and economic fabric in response to the reception of foreign excellences.


In the domain of professional recognition, MMW Europe Ltd emerges as an indispensable strategic ally, actively engaging with Italian Ministerial Authorities and International Entities to provide impeccable assistance in the preparation and submission of crucial documentation for the application submission, irrespective of your geographical location. Our team of highly skilled professionals excels in navigating the complexities of the application process, prioritising the meticulous presentation of your qualifications. Whether your aspirations entail securing prominent professional positions, or validating your professional accomplishments, MMW Europe Ltd pledges comprehensive support at every stage. We are dedicated to ensuring that your documentation precisely adheres to the exacting standards mandated by Italian consular authorities. We also have an office in Rome, which serves as the headquarters for all Italian ministries (

If you find yourself grappling with the intricacies of the application process for the recognition of your qualifications in Italy, do not hesitate to reach out to me at