Pučko Otvoreno Učilište - Zagreb

Public Open University - Zagreb

Associate Member

Mr. Tihomir Žiljak

Ulica grada Vukovara 68

10000 Zagreb, Republic of Croatia

Tel.: (00385) 1 60 03 032

tihomir.ziljak (at) pou.hr



Mission statement

The mission of Public Open University Zagreb as an institution for lifelong learning is providing wide range of high quality formal and non-formal education programmes and cultural activities for all citizens who want to improve their vocational and key competencies with
inclusion of unemployed, older adults, disability persons and other disadvantage groups.

Main activities

The Public Open University Zagreb (POUZ) is the largest, non-profit adult education institution in the Republic of Croatia. The founder of the POUZ is the city of Zagreb, i.e. municipal authorities. POUZ has 300 educational programs, 15,000 students per year, 70 employees and 350 part-time job professors and trainers. It offers a broad spectrum of educational and cultural programs - starting from elementary and secondary school programs to vocational training and additional training programmes, various forms of non-formal education, exchibitions and publishing programmes, development of national and international projects, as well as programmes of the University of the Third Age (U3A)

  • Lifelong learning promotion
  • Adult education improvement
  • Development of new opportunities for adult education in EQF
  • Educational Policy initiatives
  • Sharing experience and best practice
  • Organizational development
  • Teaching strategies improvement


POUZ is, according to the programme concept and models of open universities located throughout the Europe, open for public and community interests, while as an educational institution it is open also for all participants, from school and third age students, for participants that have only started with their vocational training, as well as for those who wish to attend skill improvement and specialized training courses.

Working fields

  • Elementary and secondary school (for adults)
  • Basic skills/Literacy
  • Programs out of Zagreb
  • Vocational trainings
  • Non-formal education (art, music, hobby programs, HRE, EDC education)
  • Culture programs
  • Civil dialogue/Intercultural dialogue/Active citizenship
  • Publishing
  • Researching in adult education
  • Business Administration College (new from 2006)


The founders of POUZ are the City of Zagreb, i.e. municipal authorities, and two ministries of the Republic of Croatia - Ministry of Science, Education and Sport and Ministry of Culture. The Institution has been established since 1907, with the name Pučko sveučilište (Continuing Education University), in fact as the university extension, and POUZ even today promotes a part of its original programme tradition and the name.

International projects

CLICK (Computers, Languages and Intergenerational Communication in the Kitchen): 2013-2015 - duration 2 years; partners: in Czech Republic, Italy, Austria, Germany, Bulgaria, Romania,Turkey, Spain, Croatia; 2013-1-CZ1-GRU06-14274 7

MOVe IT (Connecting new IT-skills, video production and (self)employment): 2013-2014 - duration 1 year; partners: POU Vinkovci, VET school Sisak, VET school Otočac

LIFELONG LISTENING: 2013-2014 - duration 1 year; Europeaid/131319/M/ACT/HR

Adult Literacy - Teacher competencies: 2013-2014 - duration 1 year; 2013-1-HR1-GRU13-03219

4th grade (for educational vertical mobility and employability after three-year VET school): 2011-2012 - duration 1 year

Deaf Palme Puls: 2012 - duration 1 week

Tasty Competences: 2010-2011 - duration 1 year; partners: POU Zadar

Strategic Planning and Cultural Development of the City of Zagreb: 2004-2006

Training Courses and Improvement Programs for participants of Public Works of the City of Zagreb: 2005

In-service teacher training for application of ICT in Croatian Schools: 2002-2004; partners: Ministry of Science, Education and Sports, Croatia, Third Age University

International Educational Centre - Luša/Šibenik (from 2005)


Every year, POUZ publishes around 20 books (textbooks, teacher´s book, handbooks).


Full list of publication series:

Feasibility Study: Older Adults’ Lifelong Learning and ICT Use in the Danube Region: Ulm University : Zentrum für Allgemeine Wissenschaftliche Weiterbildung (ZAWiW); partners: Association of U3As in Slovačka, University of Ljubljana and the Slovenian Association of U3As, Slovenija, Department for Teacher Training from the University of Craiova, Dolj County and the Asociatia Culturală „C. Brâncusi” Timişoara, Sveučilište u Beogradu, Srbija, Rumunjska Centre for Continuing Education at the State University of Library Studies & Information Technologies and the Balkan Agency for Sustainable development, both in Sofia