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Europass - greater mobility for learning and working in Europe

A standardised dossier setting out personal skills and qualifications, which is free and available electronically in 28 languages, can help citizens find work or receive training anywhere in Europe.

The Europass is a portfolio of five documents and an electronic folder which can contain descriptions of a citizen’s learning achievements, official qualifications, work experience, skills and competences.

It contains the following elements:

  • Europass CV - to illustrate the holder’s skills;
  • Europass mobility - to record all periods of transnational mobility for learning purposes;
  • Europass diploma supplement - to provide details on higher education courses completed;
  • Europass certificate supplement - issued by competent national authorities to describe vocational qualifications;
  • Europass language passport - to present linguistic and cultural skills;
  • European skills passport - to improve the presentation of a CV by bringing together in one place the educational and training certificates declared in the CV.

The initiative is supported by an internet portal which allows citizens to draw up their own Europass CVs and language passports, and to find out about the other Europass documents.

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Read how Petya Kapchina a Bachelor of Economics of defense and security changed her career into ICT with help of eSkills for Jobs!

Petya Kapchina was one of the first motivated people who examined information about trainings and applied for a training with IT Talents a stakeholder of the eSkills for Jobs in Bulgaria. Later on her application was approved and she started a training, finished in May 2016 successfully and is currently working as a junior developer. Within few months Petya has totally changed her career, read the inspiring interview.

How have you decided to learn programming?

In the time of graduation, I started looking for my first serious job - it was as a human resources assistant. It was interesting, but I did not feel satisfaction from what I did. The working time passed slowly, and I needed bigger challenges in terms of operational tasks. So I gave an overview of the things that excited me from school. I’ve always been good at mathematics in high school and university and mathematics was among my favorite subjects. And this directed me to programming. Then in August 2015 I talked with Mrs. Vessela Kalacheva in her capacity as CEO of BAIT and national coordinator of eSkills for Jobs in Bulgaria. In a conversation, she told me about the present opportunities for retraining the eSkills for Jobs campaign provided and IT Talents emerged as the best alternative in my case.

Did you have a basic knowledge of programming before the IT Talents training?

I graduated Mathematics High School and we have been taught some basic things about programming, but the next four years at university I was very far from this field, my knowledge was zero at the first lecture of the training camp.

Read her full interview here

eSkills for Jobs 2016: Worldwide study highlights the essentials for digital empowerment

A study published by Barclays with the support of a wide range of influential names from the technology sector, looked at what is needed for the development of digital skills by considering the experience of 10 countries.

According to the report, it is “clear that becoming digitally empowered is not just about acquiring specific skills. It is very much about building confidence in their application”. There is also a strong focus on the mantra of ‘learning to learn’ – or rather than devising specific lessons to teach particular skills, schools and colleges should focus on providing access to the right tools and an environment in which people can be encouraged to exploit their natural creativity.

Read the full article here

The Economist "Re-educating Rita"

In July 2011 Sebastian Thrun, who among other things is a professor at Stanford, posted a short video on YouTube, announcing that he and a colleague, Peter Norvig, were making their “Introduction to Artificial Intelligence” course available free online. By the time the course began in October, 160,000 people in 190 countries had signed up for it. At the same time Andrew Ng, also a Stanford professor, made one of his courses, on machine learning, available free online, for which 100,000 people enrolled. Both courses ran for ten weeks. Mr Thrun’s was completed by 23,000 people; Mr Ng’s by 13,000.

Such online courses, with short video lectures, discussion boards for students and systems to grade their coursework automatically, became known as Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). In 2012 Mr Thrun founded an online-education startup called Udacity, and Mr Ng co-founded another, called Coursera. That same year Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology got together to form edX, a non-profit MOOC provider, headed by Anant Agarwal, the head of MIT’s artificial-intelligence laboratory. Some thought that MOOCs would replace traditional university teaching. The initial hype around MOOCs has since died down somewhat (though millions of students have taken online courses of some kind). But the MOOC boom illustrated the enormous potential for delivering education online, in bite-sized chunks.

Read the full article

e-Skills Match press release featured on Joinup!

The first press release of the project has been posted on Joinup website.

View the relevant post here

e-Skills Match 1st Newsletter Issue published on Joinup!

e-Skills Match ( is an EU co-funded project aiming to develop and demonstrate a European-wide learning system that will dynamically adapt to the changes that are occurring to current job market classifications and will support the user to identify any potential lack of necessary e-Skills and digital competences, while it will offer him the tools and methods to gain (re-) training in order to become more competitive and access the desirable jobs within ICT or non-ICT sectors.

Towards these objectives, the project will design, develop and deploy the e-Skills Match platform, a web-based multilingual platform which will offer an e-Portfolio solution hosted in a cloud environment. The platform will be tested by real users and will allow them to assess their current knowledge against e-Skills and digital competences demanded by the job market.

The Newsletter Issue has been published in June 2016 and has been posted on Joinup!
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Joinup: "Grenoble continues to move schools to open source"

Following last year’s successful pilot, the French city of Grenoble is this year moving 8 more schools to a complete free and open source stack. France’s 16th largest city, is using Linux for PCs, laptops and servers. The city intends to have switched all schools at the end of 2018.

The switch to free software allows the city to support a wide range of computer hardware, said Grenoble’s assistant mayor Laurence Comparat. “And we have all kinds: new ones, old ones, mobile ones, laptops, and even home-built from spare parts.”

Ms Comparat talked about the project at the Adullact Congres 2016 in Montpellier, on 24 June. The city’s school project is a reference case for Adullact’s Agape, a software solution for managing OpenLDAP directory services.

Read the full article on Joinup

Euractiv:"All eyes on the EU Skills Agenda"

Unemployment rates continue to run high across Europe; 10 June saw the European Commission publish its much-anticipated Skills Agenda. It is a welcome step towards addressing this challenge, and one that will need to be further built upon, writes Alba Xhixha, Senior Communications and Government Affairs Manager at Aspect Consulting.

Despite a plethora of policy initiatives, unemployment rates have only decreased slightly – at 18.8%, the youth joblessness rate is more than double that of the overall population. The situation is equally challenging for older citizens, who are more likely to suffer from long-term unemployment and are at greater risk of poverty.

Paradoxically, despite the ‘over-education’ in Europe, two million vacancies remain unfilled – particularly in STEM areas such as science, technology, engineering and mathematics. This has huge implications for sectors such as Big Data Analytics for example. Indeed, 40% of European employers say they cannot find people with the skills they need to grow and innovate. PwC’s Annual CEO Survey, published this year, also reveals that 72% of CEOs globally are concerned about the availability of key skills.

To make matters worse, job markets are being transformed by technology and the impact of automation on employment will only increase over time. A recent study by Deloitte showed that around 114,000 jobs in the legal sector alone are likely to become automated, and another 39% of jobs are at “high risk” of being made redundant by machines in the next two decades.

Read more on Euractiv

e-Skills for Jobs 2016: "Five questions senior managers should ask about IT in a digital world"

In this era, companies are exploring digital business models, processes, and automation technologies, as well as seeking to hire and retain people with different skill sets. The IT organization can no longer be considered just a service provider; how it manages the integration of emerging technologies can help determine the success of a company's digital strategy. What are the 5 key IT questions board directors should ask – this is the topic of a recent article by McKinsey and Co

To make their companies successful in the digital world, senior managers need to learn a second language – that is the IT language in their departments. Oftentimes, both board and IT managers seem to speak different languages – while board directors are more concentrated on revenues and sales, IT managers think in a language which is centered on traditional cost-related metrics, such as head counts and bottom lines. According to the authors of the article, board directors are more likely to gain such fluency if they routinely ask these five critical questions relating to the IT organization’s performance:

  • To what degree does technology permit core business activities to happen?
  • What value is the business getting from its most important IT projects?
  • How long does it take the IT organization to develop and deploy new features and functionality?
  • How efficient is IT at rolling out technologies and achieving desired outcomes?
  • What skills and talent does IT need to achieve desired outcomes?

Read the full article

What does being a digital native mean?

Being a digital native does not necessarily mean going online daily. So what exactly makes you be one? Digital natives may not be inevitably tech savvy, but their sense of knowledge of what's going on both digitally and culturally is what sets them up to be natives.

Marc Prensky, best known as the inventor and popularizer of the terms “digital native” and “digital immigrant” in 2001, told Mashable: “Digital immigrants are people who grew up in one digital culture and moved into another. Digital natives are people who grew up in one culture. They don’t have two cultures to compare.”

However, the term has evolved ever since. According to Lee Rainie of Pew Research Center, its meaning is now hotly debated. He explains that many definitions have emerged and they are often fairly contested.

“A native is someone who is totally aware and understands technology,” adds the center’s Director of Internet, Science and Technology. Rainie points out that many scholars and analysts believe even though digital natives are good at using platforms and social media, they don't necessarily always know how to code or how these apps work.

Read more on e-Skills for Jobs 2016

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