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Date : Sunday, 19 August 2018

Digital Skills for Everyone

Employment and Social policy
Date: Thursday, 05 April 2018 10:00 - 16:30

Venue: Thon Hotel Brussels City Centre  |  City: Saint-Josse-ten-Noode, Belgium

Digitalisation is permeating all policy sectors and everyday life. Nowadays, citizens are required to have more digital skills in order to participate in modern society and to advance their professional career.However, according to the factsheet from the Tallinn Digital Summit (2017), 44% of the European population does not have any basic digital skills, although soon 9 out of 10 jobs will require digital competences. It is moreover predicted that in 2020 the ICT (Information and Communication Technology) sector will face a lack of 500,000 experts. Despite improvements in the data and clear commitment of the political side, Europe is still lacking the digitally-skilled workforce needed to fill the gaps.

The digital sector and especially e-skills have been at the top of European agenda since 2014. One of the Juncker Commission’s priorities is to complete the Digital Single Market (DSM) by 2019. Among the most important tools to achieve this objective is the New Skills Agenda for Europe, endorsed in 2016. Member States recently agreed to unify their efforts in the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition, and on 7th December 2017 the Commission launched the Digital Opportunity Traineeship Programme to help young people enter the labour market.  Other initiatives include the Code week for many European schools and the Digital Skills Awards, assigned to the best initiatives encouraging the development of e-skills. Increasing training opportunities and programmes are increasingly enabling European citizens to be fully equipped in the era of digitalisation.

Given the importance of the ICT sector in the global market, Europe has to advance quickly. The next few years will be crucial to make the digital sector friendly to all citizens, to boost their career opportunities and to harmonise different European markets. Europe needs a comprehensive strategy and efficient solutions, close cooperation between the education and business sectors to complete the task of digital literacy for everyone and to stimulate the economic competitiveness.

This timely international Symposium will provide an important opportunity to exchange views on the recent initiatives launched in the framework of the EU’s New Skills Agenda. Delegates will get a chance to analyse the opportunities to integrate the digital sector in citizens’ life, its benefits, and the possibilities offered by comprehensive and sustainable training. The symposium will touch upon the topic of digital inclusiveness and how different organisations can lead the process. The participants will share best practice and discuss their digital skills adaptability in different sectors.

Delegates Will

  • Understand the European initiatives aimed at enhancing capacities in the digital sector
  • Assess changes in the modern working environment due to the digitalisation
  • Explore the opportunities to finance digital education under different Europe-funded programmes (Horizon 2020, Erasmus+)
  • Discover ways to build long term strategies to enhance digital literacy and benefit from digital training
  • Debate how to address social changes brought about by a growing need of digital skills
  • Analyse actions undertaken to ensure a larger inclusion of women in the ICT sector
  • Identify ways to address European geographic fragmentation in digitisation
  • Evaluate the role of digital skills in future education and ways to increase their presence in national curricula
  • Gain insights on youth inclusion in job markets using digital training


09:15 Registration and Morning Refreshments
10:00 Chair's Welcome and Opening Remarks

Analysing the Impact of European Legislation in the Field of Digital Skills and Reflecting on the Way Forward                     

  • Accomplishing the Digital Single Market by 2019: A Dream or a Reality?
  • Advancing the New Skills Agenda for Europe: Promoting Lifelong Learning and Adjusting to Changing Needs 
  • Looking into the Latest European Initiatives for Digital Skills
  • Incorporating E-Skills Education into Specific European Programmes: Horizon2020 and Erasmus+ 
10:40 First Round of Discussions
11.10 Morning Coffee Break

Addressing Digital Inclusiveness: A Real Possibility to Unify Fragmented European Society? 

  • Tackling Gender Inequality in the Traditionally Male-Dominated ICT sector
  • Reshaping Digital Education in Schools: Fostering Cooperation between the Academic and Industrial Spheres
  • Presenting Freely Accessible Digital Education Tools and Initiatives Aiming to Include Different Social Groups
  • Addressing the Digital Inequality across  European Regions
12:00 Second Round of Discussions
12.30 Networking Lunch

Combining the Digital Literacy and Capacity Building Programmes with Youth Employment Initiatives 

  • Boosting the Attractiveness of Working in the ICT Sector: Explaining its Adaptability to Multiple Sectors and Industries and Widely Communicating its Benefits
  • Promoting the Importance of Digital Skills from an Early Age
  • Analysing the Relevance of Soft Skills and Critical Thinking in a Digitalised Society
  • Presenting Different Models to Improve Digital Skills: Cooperation between Public and Private sector and Local Authority Initiatives
14.00 Third Round of Discussions
14:30 Afternoon Coffee Break

Unlocking the Potential of European Industries: Developing Digital Skills to Boost Economic Competetiveness  

  • Re-skilling Personnel and Anticipating the Labour Market’s Needs: How to Make it Feasible?
  • Defining and developing the IT professionals’ competences – the e-Competence Framework
  • Preserving Europe’s Role as Key Global Actor by Raising Highly-Digitalised Citizens: Implementing a Deeper Cross Border Approach
  • Balancing the Investment in Technologies with the Investment in Knowledge: Elaborating a New Perception of ICTs
15.20 Fourth Round of Discussions
15:50 Chair's Summary and Closing Remarks
16.00 Networking Reception and Refreshments
16.30 Symposium Close

** Please note that the programme and speakers are subject to change without notice **

Who Should Attend?

  • ICT Training Companies
  • ICT Certification Companies
  • ICT Practitioners
  • Education and Vocational Education Training Organisations
  • Employment Agencies and Organisations
  • Staff Recruitment and Staffing Players
  • National Governmental Organisations
  • Local Governmental Organisations
  • Local Authority Officers and Councillors
  • Social Services
  • SMEs and HR Managers in Larger Enterprises
  • Trade Unions
  • Employers' Organisations
  • Associations of Schools
  • Academics and Researchers
  • Ministries of Employment and Social Affairs
  • Research Institutes
  • Social Innovation Centres
  • National Departments for Social and Family Affairs
  • Lifelong Learning Institutes
  • Social Advisers
  • Active Ageing Organisations
  • Voluntary Organisations
  • Employment and Social Inclusion Institutes
  • Labour Economy Research Centres
  • Labour Market Institutes
  • European Social Organisational Science Consultancies
  • European Employment Associations
  • Social Partners
  • Associations of Social Enterprises
  • Sheltered Employment and Labour Integration Organisations
  • Physical and Social Rehabilitation Centres
  • Disabled People's Rehabilitation and Employment Unions
  • Vocational Training Centres
  • Innovation and Personal Development Centres
  • Special Employment Unions



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Avenue du Boulevard 17
1210 Saint-Josse-ten-Noode, Belgium




All Dates

  • Thursday, 05 April 2018 10:00 - 16:30

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