Damjan Lajh and Urška Štremfel:
Exploiting the Potential of the Open Method of Coordination in Slovenian Education Policy 
Abstract: The open method of coordination (OMC) holds great potential to improve various (qualitative and quantitative) aspects of education policies in EU member states. Due to its soft/non-obligatory way of infl uencing policy, it is particularly interesting to investigate to what extent its potential is actually put to good use in member states and which factors determine whether member states actually achieve the Lisbon Strategy’s goals. Bearing in mind the lack of empirical evidence for the OMC’s infl uence on national education policies, and considering the theoretical assumptions of soft modes of governance, Europeanisation processes and policy learning, this article identifies the potential of the OMC, and analyses its (possible) impact on education policy in Slovenia. Here, the article limits itself to the lifelong learning policy and seeks to discover the extent to which the OMC’s potential in this regard is taken advantage of in Slovenia. The article concludes that, although relatively good results are visible in National/EU Progress Reports, its full potential has not been exploited. The authors explain that good quantitative goals are achievable for member states even without respecting the qualitative goals related to good governance. In order to make use of all of the potential, more knowledge about the OMC in Slovenia would be required.
Keywords: open method of coordination, education policy, Slovenia, European Union, good governance