Margherita Caggiano No Comments

UNEVOC-UNEVOC Publication: Moving Forward – Biennial Report 2016-2017

Unesco-Unevoc in Action – Biennial Report 2016-2017

UNESCO-UNEVOC, the UNESCO spcialized Centre for TVET acting as part of the UN mandate to promote peace, justice, equity, poverty alleviation, and greater social cohesion, has recently published the Moving Forward Biennial Report which gives a comprehensive overview of its activities in TVET over the biennium 2016-2017, and highlights the concerted actions and support to the UNEVOC Network and UNESCO Member States through capacity development, international collaborations and knowledge exchange to advance TVET.

The report details key engagements under each of the five thematic priority areas of UNESCO-UNEVOC: Greening TVET,  Promoting ICT,  Mainstreaming entrepreneurship, Mobilizing youth to promote skills development, and Gender equality.

Greening TVET for integrating Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) and climate change actions

Over the course of the biennium, UNESCO-UNEVOC’s engagements in greening TVET included developing strategic partnerships, improving the capacities of UNEVOC Centres and Member States, and building the knowledge resources that reinforce orientation towards greater sustainability and institutional applications. As a result, over 200 TVET institution stakeholders and young people in more than 20 countries have increased their greening TVET capacities and understanding of the issue.

Promoting ICTs in TVET

The integration of ICTs in TVET presents certain challenges such as the disparity between the skills demanded by industry and the competencies of the TVET teachers to impart these to their students, largely due to their limited exposure to new technolgies as well as gaps in their own training.

Mainstreaming entrepreneurship in TVET

One of the targets of Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG4) on Education is to strengthen ‘skills for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship’. In line with the UNESCO TVET Strategy (2016–2021), youth employment and entrepreneurship is one of the core thematic priorities for UNESCO-UNEVOC’s activities. During the course of the biennium, the work of UNESCO-UNEVOC in this area focused on supporting TVET institutions in the Member States and the UNEVOC Network to develop and implement effective strategies to strengthen entrepreneurial skills in TVET.

Mobilizing youth to promote skills development

Young people constitute a crucial target group for TVET. UNESCO-UNEVOC pays particular attention to helping young people engage in the promotion of skills development and ensuring that their perspectives are reflected in the policy discussions and programmes. World Youth Skills Day is a UN-recognized initiative that aims to raise awareness about the importance of ensuring that all young people have access to good-quality TVET and skills development opportunities.

Gender equality

The UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre has been promoting discussions to shed light on issues of gender inequality in TVET, with a particular focus on women’s participation in this sector – the aim being to build a stronger knowledge base founded on good practice that will help guide targeted policies and programmes.

The Biennial Report gives an overview of the UNEVOC Network, consisting of approximately 250 Centres across 165 UNESCO Member States, Capacity Development Programmes, Knowledge Development and Management activities organised by the Centre, Partnership and international collaboration. The last part of the publication introduces the TVET team and the financial report of the biennum.

Download the publication: Unesco – Unevoc Biennial Report 2016-2017


Margherita Caggiano No Comments

Message from the Chair – May 2018

Australians sometimes take for granted the excellent educational services and experiences available to us. Not only are they central to the progress of our community and its citizens, but they have become important contributors in an economy that has gradually moved toward an increasing level of service exports.

Yet, despite Australia’s success in attracting fee-paying foreign students, we have left untested very large opportunities to extend the value of our education capabilities and expertise.

For some time now the fastest growing economies of the world have been in formerly underdeveloped nations. Gradually, many of those nations have established stronger economic performance and slowly they have improved governance and other factors that attract the catalyst of larger scale investment. The opportunity becomes one of compounding growth and rising prosperity.

In country after country, Sustainable Skills has found a new apetite for skills training. Specifically, vocational training that has a high degree of alignment with industry demand and a practical design that supports the needs of low income communities. The Australian model, with its well established industry based competencies and modular course design, is very often the preferred choice for both qualitative and pragmatic reasons.

For example, Myanmar’s new democratic government has hoped to promote rapid economic improvement on the back of the removal of international sanctions. Yet it’s education system so far has been simply unable to provide skilled people. In the course of revising its entire education system, Myanmar’s Government elevated vocational education from nowhere to top of the list. As the nation’s most consistent long term supporter, Australia has an edge in what should become a dynamic growth market.

Even more obvious is the opportunity in Indonesia. President Widodo has elevated infrastructure investment to the top priority and has an enormous investment agenda. In this case it appears likely that a major constraint will be skills. Already, key projects like the Jakarta metro are heavily staffed by foreigners – a practice that Indonesia simply can’t sustain. Again, Australian vocational education is the preferred model.

Ethiopia, Vietnam, Malaysia, India and many other developing markets are looking for the means to fast track vocational education improvements. Not all of these opportunities is straight forward and no one would advocate a rush of investments in Australian-styled institutions is environments with very different economic and social drivers, not to mention much lower incomes. But the risks can be managed and the scale requirements beyond the initial capacity-building are manageable. Yet so far, most of the activity by Australian providers in these markets has a focus on accreditation, implying some of sort of local delivery of Australian courseware. This has been demonstrated time and again to be impractical.

Sustainable Skills has a menu of very interesting opportunities that we will continue to explore and develop.  Each requires a local focus and strong guidance from experienced Australian specialists. This will take time, but we are confident that strong results will emerge from the application of that Australian expertise. We’d welcome partners or supporters in any of these projects.

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