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Lucubrate Magazine, January 7th, 2023
Three-quarters of EU companies report difficulties finding workers with the necessary skills. The European Year of Skills 2023 aims to help to develop skills more effective and inclusive investment in training and to upskill to harness the full potential of the European workforce.
Why does Europe need a European Year of Skills 2023
On the homepage of the European Commission, we can, among others, read the following arguments for setting up a European Year of Skills :
- The green and digital transitions open new opportunities for people and the EU economy. Having the relevant skills empowers people to navigate labour market changes successfully and to engage in society and democracy fully.
- This will ensure that nobody is left behind and the economic recovery and the green and digital transitions are socially fair and just.
- A workforce with the skills in demand also contributes to sustainable growth, leads to more innovation, and improves companies’ competitiveness.
- However, more than three-quarters of companies in the EU report difficulties finding workers with the necessary skills. The latest figures from Eurostat suggest that only 37% of adults undertake training regularly.
- The Digital Economy and Society Index shows that 4 out of 10 adults and every third person who works in Europe lacks basic digital skills. In addition, in 2021, 28 occupations ranging from construction and healthcare to engineering and IT had shortages, showing a growing demand for both high and low-skilled workers.
- There is also a low representation of women in tech-related professions and studies, with only 1 in 6 IT specialists and 1 in 3 STEM graduates being women.
- To encourage lifelong learning, EU Member States have endorsed the EU 2030 social target that at least 60% of adults should participate in training every year, already presenting their national contribution to meeting this target.
Boosting competitiveness, participation and talent
Further, we can read about the European Year of Skills. It will be broad cooperation including the political level, the industry, education and training providers. The aim is :
- Promoting increased and more effective and inclusive investment in training and upskilling to harness the full potential of the European workforce and to support people in changing from one job to another.
- Ensure skills are relevant to labour market needs by cooperating with social partners and companies.
- Matching people’s aspirations and skill sets with opportunities in the job market, especially for the green and digital transition and the economic recovery. A particular focus will be given to activating more people for the labour market, particularly women and young people, especially those not in education, employment or training.
- Attracting people from third countries with the skills needed by the EU, including strengthening learning opportunities and mobility and facilitating the recognition of qualifications.
To meet these objectives, the idea is to promote upskilling and reskilling opportunities, for instance, by highlighting relevant initiatives and funding possibilities. Events and awareness-raising campaigns will also be organised across Europe.
The Year also aims to help to develop skills intelligence tools and promote tools and instruments for increased transparency and easier recognition of qualifications.
Lucubrate Magazine wishes the best for this great initiative
References Commission kick-starts work on the European Year of Skills (https://ec.europa.eu/social/main.jsp?langId=en&catId=89&newsId=10431&furtherNews=yes)
Lucubrate Magazine January 2023
The photo on the top of the article: Adobe Stock