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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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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


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Greening TVET: A Practical Guide for Institutions

Greening TVET: A Practical Guide for Institutions Released by UNESCO-UNEVOC

Environmental Issues represent one of the World’s most pressing challenges of our century. According to the Global Footprint Network, the Earth Overshoot Day, the date when humanity’s annual demand on nature exceeds what Earth can regenerate over the entire year, this year marked globally on August 2, the earliest it’s ever been. Industry can play a pivotal role to reduce the global carbon footprint and change the future of our Planet. This transition demands a change in the nature of work by ensuring workforces have skills and knowledge to support the new green economies and societies. TVET is crucial to support the transition to a low-carbon economy by preparing learners to face new expectations of the industry.

In light of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), TVET underpins many of the proposed goals and the achievement of sustainable development. For example, Goals 4, 6 and 8 of the SDGs are directly related to TVET, with many of the targets capable of being supported by a well-designed TVET system and targeted skills-development interventions.

The “Greening TVET” guide, recently published by UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre for TVET, outlines the main reasons to invest in greening TVET, including:

  • Greening TVET helps production to advance to more environmentally conscious practices,
  • A ‘green’ worker is a more employable worker; a ‘green’ workforce will enhance the profitability of the enterprise;
  • National governments need to seize the potential for job creation by providing skills needed in the new green sectors;
  • Disadvantaged groups in the labour market (young people, women, persons with disabilities, rural communities and other vulnerable groups) require targeted support to develop their potential knowledge and skills for green jobs.

The publication is designed to help leaders and practitioners of technical and vocational education and training (TVET) improving their understanding and implementation of education for sustainable development using a whole-institution approach to greening their institutions.

“Greening TVET” discusses four key steps:

  • STEP 1: Understanding the process
  • STEP 2: Planning for the greening of TVET
  • STEP 3: Implementing an Institutional Green Plan
  • STEP 4: Monitoring and Assessment Strategies

The Guide is available here


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From Shanghai to Tangshan: The Vital Role of TVET

Last month, China hosted in Tangshan the “Skills on the move: global trends, local resonances” international conference attended by more than 500 participants from 70 countries. The event, co-organised by UNESCO, the PRC Government and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, analysed the current skills development scenario in the context of the SDG agenda, and highlighted global trends within TVET five years after the Third International Congress in Shanghai (2012) which resulted in the Shanghai Consensus document, a roadmap to enhance Technical and Vocational Education and Training and ensure a sustainable and inclusive development for each country.

Main outcome of the congress is a statement document updating the Shanghai Consensus by reviewing major trends and policy developments in TVET over the past five years.

The new document, “From Shanghai to Tangshan. Shanghai Consensus updated: working together to achieve the Education 2030 agenda”, focuses on four key areas:

  1. Anticipating and assessing skills needs by using labor market intelligence, partnerships and assessment techniques;
  2. Developing skills for all  to ensure inclusive, quality and relevant skills development opportunities;
  3. Making skills and qualifications more transparent and better recognized;
  4. Contributing to a better use of skills in the world of work and supporting entrepreneurship.

The document recognises the critical role  of international cooperation to achieve TVET-related targets included in the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and advocates for the promotion of youth employment and entrepreneurship; equity and gender equality; and the transition to green economies and sustainable societies.


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