Margherita Caggiano No Comments

16-29 March 2018: Open E-Discussion About Lifelong Learning Launched by ILO

ILO Centenary Initiative on the Future of Work (FOW): E-Discussion About Lifelong Learning

Created in 1919 as part of the Treaty of Versailles that ended World War I, the Geneva-based International Labour Organization (ILO) is the U.N. agency that brings together governments, employers and workers of 187 member States , to set labour standards, develop policies and devise programmes promoting decent work for all women and men. In preparation to its Centenary next year, ILO has launched in 2016 the “Future of Work initiative (FOW)” aimed to understand and respond effectively to the new challenges that the world of work is facing due to a major process of change.

The Global E-discussion about Lifelong Learning (LLL), opened between 16th and 29th March to all the stakeholders of the TVET sector, is one of the initiatives that forms part of the FOW program. This E-discussion aims to bring together representatives of government, education and training institutions, the private sector, workers, academia, and international organisations to discuss concrete policy options in developed and developing countries for promoting LLL.

According to the Glossary of VET prepared by the Australian National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER), Lifelong Learning is  the process of acquiring knowledge or skills throughout life via education, training, work and general life experiences. Challenges posed by the advent of new technologies, climate changes, and globalisation are significantly transforming the world of work, and the capacity of workers to upskill and shift to new jobs is crucial to determine the sustainability and stability of the economic system. LLL is central to managing the different transitions that workers will face over the course of their life by ensuring that they successfully enter the labour market, continually upskill while in employment, and reskill to take advantage of emerging jobs throughout their careers. In this scenario, national education and training systems can play a pivotal role to ensure equal access to job opportunities for all throughout their life.

People who intend to participate to the e-discussion promoted by ILO are invited to read the Issue Brief ‘Skills Policies and Systems for a Future Workforce’ prepared for the 2nd Meeting of the Global Commission on the Future of Work, and to reflect on a number of key questions about LLL:

1. How can the model of LLL be adapted to cater to a future world of work? What are the building blocks of a well-functioning LLL system?

2. What governance mechanisms will be suitable for the efficient provision of and engagement in relevant LLL for all? What are the respective roles of governments, the private sector and the social partners?

3. What financial mechanisms might be used to encourage the provision of and participation in training; who should bear the cost and how? What are investment priorities for LLL to harness economic growth and minimise social risks?

4. What strategies, policies and incentives will be needed to increase the uptake of LLL?

5. What are the appropriate delivery mechanisms of LLL that will make learning accessible and relevant for youth, adults and older workers, embrace new technologies and forms of learning and balance needs for wide access, flexibility and quality in the learning offer?.

The E-discussion can be easily accessed by visiting the ILO skills for employment website, scrolling down to the “Your Comments” section, and posting comments and observations about LLL.




Margherita Caggiano No Comments

ILO-WTO book: Investing in Skills for Inclusive Trade

ILO and WTO have recently co-published the book: “Investing in Skills for Inclusive Trade” focused on the linkages between trade and skills and between trade and skills development policies. The publication has been presented on 4 July during a conference at the WTO headquarter in Geneva by Roberto Azevêdo and Guy Ryder, respectively WTO and ILO Director-General.

According to the study, national skills development systems able to match skills supply to demand are crucial to improve each country’s competitive position in the current global economy scenario and to support inclusive development. Enhancing the skills of a country’s workforce lifts the export performance of its enterprises and better prepares them to meet foreign competition in the domestic market.

The authors outline that addressing the need for developing a more competitive workforce is a long-term process. Continuing education and training at universities, in TVET, and on-the-job training can help workers and managers cope with the big changes in demand for skills which are in varying degrees triggered by globalization. In support to these arguments, the book shows evidence of a range of policy approaches which have helped countries in responding effectively to these challenges.

Major concepts expressed in the book by WTO and ILO economists include:

  • Skills development is key to more inclusive trade
  • The level and composition of skills in a country affect its participation in trade
  • Trade affects the demand for skills in several ways
  • Trade affects the wage distribution by increasing the returns to skills
  • An appropriate skills supply increases gains from trade and improves their distribution
  • Available responses

As a key stakeholder in the Australian TVET sector and as a consultant to the TVET authorities of a number of African and Asian countries, Sustainable Skills has extensive experience supporting Governments and Industry to build effective TVET systems able to match skills supply to demand and to ensure each country’s inclusive economical and social development.

Click here to read more about the book presentation

Download the Executive summary

Download the full book “Investing in Skills for Inclusive Trade”

To get our latest updates follow Sustainable Skills:

Margherita Caggiano No Comments

Guide to anticipating and matching skills and jobs

Guide to anticipating and matching skills and jobs

The International Labour Organisation (ILO), the UN agency specialised in promoting rights at work, encouraging decent employment opportunities, enhancing social protection and strengthen dialogue on work-related issues, has recently released a new volume of the series “Guides to anticipating and matching skills and jobs”.  The volume forms part of a compendium of methodological guides on anticipation and matching of skills supply and demand developed by the combined expertise of the European Training Foundation (ETF), the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop) and the International Labour Office. This project aims to supply proper methodological tools particularly to developing countries, whose access to labour market information is often quite limited.

In a context of dynamic and complex labour markets, gathering intelligence on current and future skill needs can support better matching of training and jobs, which is of paramount importance for every country in the world. Skills matching can also help reduce unemployment, particularly among young people, build a better life for individuals by improving employability, social mobility and inclusion.

Accurate information and analyses are keys to effective education and employment strategies and to productive investments. Instead, the lack of intelligence can often result in the creation of structural problems in the labour market, problems for individuals in finding work, and problems for employers in finding appropriately skilled workers.

As the Australian Industry Skills Council for the Resources and Infrastructure Industries (RII), between 2003 and 2016, Sustainable Skills (formerly SkillsDMC) played a pivotal role to ensure that vocational education and training outcomes match the actual job market requirements. Sustainable Skills activity was focused on connecting industry, government, and training organisations to shape and maintain an effective TVET systems and frameworks through the development of the RII Training Package, which specifies the skills and knowledge required for workers to perform safely and effectively in the civil infrastructure, coal mining, construction materials (quarrying), drilling and metalliferous mining industry sectors.

In this role, Sustainable Skills activity  consisted of:

  • building Industry-led TVET,
  • providing updated and accurate intelligence to underpin the development of TVET systems and policy,
  • establishing industry committees able to identify the right skills needed by the labour market, and
  • setting up effective training programs able to form highly skilled workforces.

A tangible example of the intelligence provided by our organisation to the Australian RII Industry can be found in the  Resources and Infrastructure Industry Workforce Analysis and Forecast developed in 2016 with the aim to provide information and reasoned forecasts regarding the Australian Resources and Infrastructure Industry’s skilling needs, challenges and opportunities. In effect, this report serves as a long-term planning document for the rapidly transitioning Resources and Infrastructure Industry, and to prepare Industry participants for both the challenges and opportunities ahead.

Anticipating and matching skills with jobs is a core part of the solutions that Sustainable Skills offers to every country in the world to ensure that effective TVET systems are implemented across multiple industrial sectors. We applaud the ILO for producing such comprehensive resources but we also recognise that often access to information is only part of the solution. We know from our work that quality information coupled with mentoring, capacity building and support from experienced practitioners is critical to the short-term success of TVET reform, but also to the long-term sustainability of that reform.

Click here for further information about the compedium “Guide to anticipating and matching skills and jobs” release by ILO.

We take great pride in assisting our partners to make the connection between international best practice and their local needs. Contact us for further information about how Sustainable Skills can deliver positive outcomes in your market or for your organisation.



To get our latest updates follow Sustainable Skills: