|Photo by: Yuri Arcurs|
At the launch of a new partnership to address a lack of ICT skills and the hundreds of thousands of unfilled ICT-related jobs, President Barroso stressed the job potential of the ICT sector for Europe. He reiterated that tackling high unemployment is the Commission's top priority.
A Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs was launched on Monday, 4 March 2013, following identification by the Commission's Digital Agenda for Europe of the lack of e-skills to pursue today's rapid technological changes. This new multi-stakeholder partnership has a mandate until 2015.
"Studies have also shown that ICT-related occupations are much more resistant to crisis than most other jobs. This clearly means that e-skills are definitely key in reducing the risk of unemployment including for senior workers. More and better qualified ICT practitioners, researchers, entrepreneurs, managers and users are needed and will increasingly be needed," said President Barroso in his speech at the launch and noted that the latest study shows that Europe faces up to 900,000 unfilled ICT jobs.
"In a nutshell, a multi-stakeholder partnership approach is the right way to develop a skills agenda in a targeted, innovative and sustainable way," said President Barroso.
Initial commitments from stakeholders have been endorsed with over 15 companies and organisations signing up to the Grand Coalition. Among the first pledges to come to life is a new online learning platform for young people called the Academy Cube and a new training module for energy smart grid installers.
The Commission has sought pledges in the following key areas:
- Training and matching for digital jobs – to help ensure the skills people are getting are the skills business needs;
- Mobility – helping those with skills get to the place where they're needed, to avoid shortages and surpluses in different towns and cities;
- Certification – making it easier to prove to an employer what skills one has, regardless of the country;
- Awareness raising – so that people know the digital sector offers rewarding and enjoyable careers to both women and men;
- Innovative learning and teaching – so our education and training systems expand and improve to give more people the skills for success.