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UNESCO-UNEVOC Trends mapping – Innovation in TVET

UNESCO-UNEVOC presents a new trends mapping study on innovation in TVET


Recently released by UNESCO-UNEVOC, this report aims to improve the understanding on innovation in TVET among the international community, as well as to map current trends and showcase different types and experiences of innovation in TVET around the world.

Written by Jan Peter Ganter de Otero, the report clarifies what innovation means for the TVET community, taking into account the different stages of development they find themselves at and different geographic, socio-economic and political contexts. The study presents a general framework that helps to analyse the development and implementation of innovative practices in TVET, including in organizational practices, ecosystem engagement, teaching and learning processes, and products and services offered by TVET institutions.

Key findings

The study identifies several important issues from the literature review, questionnaires and a virtual conference on innovation in TVET that was held in February 2019:

  • Innovation comprises substantial change in the way TVET is practiced by an institution, making it progressively more relevant to its economic, social and environmental context.
  • The deployment of a broad set of organizational practices in TVET (including planning, financing, human resource management, administrative structure, and internal monitoring and communication) is crucial to support the development of innovation in TVET.
  • It is crucial for TVET institutions to consider a comprehensive human resource management approach to build their capacity to develop and implement innovative practices. All types of TVET institutions (ministries, national bodies, training centres and universities) reported a focus on training and skills development as their main human resource management practice. The study found that there was a lack of human resource management practices concerning recruitment, appraisals and incentives.
  • Innovations in the way TVET institutions reach out and foster relationships with external actors (ecosystem) are not only crucial to overcome barriers when it comes to collaboration between the TVET system and other sectors (including business), but can also be pursued with aims of creating a stronger and supportive sense of community between different stakeholders and enhancing the status of TVET.
  • Innovations in teaching and learning processes help to enhance the quality of TVET programmes, projects and initiatives.
  • Promoting technology diffusion and applied research in TVET can also act as an engine for innovation in local community and the society.
  • The great majority of the TVET institutions reported that the lack of time, resources or staff are significant barriers to develop innovative practices.

The final part of this report provides recommendations divided in three different levels: system, policy, and institutional levels.

Download the report: Trends mapping – Innovation in TVET

Join the online discussion

From 28 October, UNESCO-UNEVOC hosted an online discussion on the TVeT Forum on planning for innovation in TVET. This online discussion will be led by Jan Otero, author of Trends mapping – Innovation in TVET,  and will focus on the process of planning for innovation in TVET institutions, schools and training centres.

To access the online discussion, you will need to have a UNEVOC account.

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Building tomorrow’s digital skills – UNESCO-UNEVOC Publication

Building tomorrow’s digital skills  – What conclusions can we draw from international comparative indicators?

Recently produced by the Division for Policies and Lifelong Learning Systems in UNESCO’s Education Sector, this report  looks at the conditions impacting the development of digital skills based on five international comparative surveys, the results of which reveal a sample group of twelve countries whose population have particularly high levels of digital skills. This paper is part of the Working Papers on Education Policy series designed to nurture the international debate about a wide range of education policy issues.

According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD),  56% of adults worldwide lack digital skills. The report shows that to achieve the best conditions for the development of digital skills, public authorities must pursue efforts in two areas: policies that create a supportive framework, and sectoral policies for basic and further training.

What are digital skills

According to the authors, the phrase “digital skills” denotes a wide range of skills, some of which relate more to behavior, expertise, know-how and life skills and are complementary and closely interconnected. Since the concept of digital skills is still evolving, those skills must be not only acquired but also constantly adapted and updated.

Digital Literacy include:

  • Photo-visual literacy – Understanding visual representations
  • Reproduction literacy – Creative re-use of information
  • Information literacy – Evaluation of information
  • Branching literacy – Ability to understand hypermedia and non-linear thinking
  • Socio-emotional literacy – Behavior in cyber space

Leading Countries

Based of the analysis of five comparative studies which reveal factors underlying the development of digital skills, the report identifies good practices on the basis of certain countries’ experiences.

Singapore, Czechia, Republic of Korea, Australia, Norway, Hong Kong and Ireland are considered leading countries in digital skills of children, whilst Denmark, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Luxembourg and Finland are leaders in developing digital skills of adults.

Key findings

Among children, four main key points can be drawn from the studies:

  • Early acquaintance of students with technological devices is associated with better digital skills.
  • Equipping schools and homes with technological devices is not enough to foster digital skill. What matters is the use that is made of them.
  • Diversification of online activities is associated with better digital skills. Encouraging children to diversify their online activities can help improve their digital skills.
  • The use of ICT by teachers has a positive effect on pupils’ digital skills, especially when this approach is applied across all subjects, and not restricted to computing classes. Teacher training in ICT is therefore crucial.

With regard to adult skills, digital skills are closely linked to socioeconomic factors, specifically educational attainment. This may indicate that the highest-performing countries in terms of digital skills are those with the least educational inequality. Improved access to further education among adults is crucial to promoting the development of digital skills.

To create the best conditions for the development of digital skills, two types of public policy must be taken into account: policies that create a supportive framework, and sectoral policies for basic and further training.

Non-sectoral policies should focus on three areas to create an enabling environment:

  • Technological infrastructure, through investments aimed at providing quality high-speed Internet access,
    reducing access costs, connecting populations in remote regions, switching from 2G to 3G and 4G, etc.
  • Digitization of businesses, by providing a framework and incentives for businesses to adopt new technologies and update their working practices by integrating digital technologies.
  • The development of online content (locally relevant content, content in local languages, etc.) to create a
    virtuous circle in which enhanced content is both a driver and a consequence of digital skills.

Click here to download the publication .

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