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Digital skills and jobs gap in Europe

The European Commission will collect pledges on employment


The Commission is issuing a call to action to companies, governments, educators, social partners, employment service providers and civil society to join us in a massive effort to "turn the tide". Young Europeans should have the tools to enter digital careers or to create jobs as entrepreneurs.

The Commission will collect pledges on new jobs, internships, training places, start-up funding, free online university courses and more. Companies such as Nokia, Telefónica, SAP, Cisco, HP, Alcatel-Lucent, Randstad, ENI, Telenor Group, ARM, as well as the CIO community, CEPIS (Council of European Professional Informatics Societies) and Digital Europe are in the first wave of those committing to act. On 4-5 March the Commission will include pledges received from partners and build them into the launch of a Grand Coalition for Digital Skills and Jobs at a major pledging conference. The conference is open to all who want to actively support this common cause.

One concrete area for action could be training vouchers. Successful German and Spanish voucher based training models provided jobs for 60-70% of the 20,000 participants and we should seek to replicate and scale up this idea on a European scale.

Other key elements of the Coalition will include mobility assistance. Such assistance is likely to range from English language learning support to facilitating mobility for unemployed persons and standardised certification of skills, via a transformed eCompetence Framework available in all 23 official languages of the EU.

In recognition of the job creation potential of web start-ups, the Commission is also launching Startup Europe, a single platform for tools and programmes supporting people wanting to set up and grow web start-ups in Europe.

Of interest