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UNESCO-UNEVOC at WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017

Held as part of the WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017, UNESCO-UNEVOC actively participated in the conference with a theme of ‘Skills Strategies for a globalized world', organized as a platform for shaping the global skills agenda. The discussions addressed the changing skills demands of the globalized world on the way people live, learn, and work and the required response.

Representatives from the world’s foremost vocational and skills development organizations – including UNESCO-UNEVOC, UNESCO, the British Council, the International Labour Organization (ILO), and the European Commission – participated at the Conference, which has seen 15 panel sessions delve into pivotal issues and challenges that will define the future skills agenda at a global level. The key thematic areas the discussions addressed included:

  • The globalization of skills and careers in an increasingly digitized world
  • The mismatch between jobs and skills
  • Labour force mobility and the constraints of existing qualifications
  • The specific challenges for skills in cities
  • Combating gender inequality in skills
In addition to being a part of the discussions through the course of the conference, UNESCO organized a panel discussion to discuss the implications of global economic trends and market forces on anticipated skill needs and mismatches, and the responses of education and training systems. Moderated by Dr Fariz Ghaith – Director of UNESCO Regional Bureau of Sciences and UNESCO Representative to Egypt, the discussants included Dr Shyamal Majumdar – Head of UNESCO-UNEVOC, Dr Brajesh Panth – Asian Development Bank, and the OECD. The discussions extolled the role skills can play and address the youth unemployment crisis and inequality. It also engaged in examining how information on global trends in skill needs is used by countries to review and renew their education and training provisions. The panellists called for increased sharing of international experiences and policy learning to support coordination and dialogue between education and training, including labour market actors in different regions of the world.

UNEVOC Network Engagements at the WorldSkills Conference Abu Dhabi 2017

On the 15 October, UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre also hosted a networking and reception session together with the Abu Dhabi Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (ACTVET) – a UNEVOC Centre in the UAE and also a key partner in this year’s World Skills Competition. This reception aimed to create an open space for networking among participants from different sectors, including the private sector, NGOs, government, and UNEVOC Centres across regions.

At this session, UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre also announced ACTVET’s membership of the UNEVOC Network and launched the World Youth Skills Day publication entitled “WYSD 2017: UNESCO-UNEVOC and WorldSkills in Action”. Director General of ACTVET, H.E. Mubarak Saeed Al Shamsi and the WorldSkills International CEO, Mr David Hoey, delivered their welcome addresses.

TVET Youth Forum

The first International TVET Youth Forum was held on 14-15 October 2017 and is a unique platform for 300 young TVET students or professionals from 70 different countries, to form ‘think tanks’ which tackled six specific areas to help formulate a “Youth Declaration” on the future of skills and TVET. These areas include Industry 4.0, Global Citizenship, Innovation, Green Economy, Entrepreneurship, and Happiness and Tolerance. Mr Shyamal Majumdar, Head of UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre acted as a mentor for the Green Economy think tank. The Youth Declaration was presented to the global decision makers as their voice in framing discussions which help trigger concrete global action.

More about the WorldSkills Competition

The WorldSkills Competition is a flagship event of WorldSkills International, a member of the international skills coalition with UNESCO and UNESCO-UNEVOC as key partners, is the biggest vocational education and skills excellence event in the world duly reflective of the global industry.

The competitors represent the best of their peers and were selected from skill competitions in WorldSkills member countries. They demonstrate technical abilities both individually and collectively to execute specific tasks for which they study and/or perform in their workplace. One of the main legacies of the WorldSkills Competitions is to give visibility and importance to professional education, as one of the true tools of socioeconomic transformation.

Full details on the conference programme are available here: (https://worldskillsabudhabi2017.com/en)

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