The EU4Digital Facility has developed a set of guidelines on National Digital Skills Coalitions, as part of its support for the establishment of national coalitions for digital skills and jobs in the Eastern partner countries.
The European Commission first launched ‘The Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition’ in March 2013, bringing together Member States, companies, social partners, non-profit organisations and education providers, who take action to tackle the lack of digital skills in Europe. Overall, National Digital Skills and Jobs Coalitions (National Coalitions) help to coordinate digital skills related activities, raise awareness and to share best practices between all countries that have established them. It was estimated that by October 2018 10.9 million people were reached through the activities of the EU Coalition.
A total of 24 National Coalitions in the EU and two in the Eastern partner countries (Armenia and Ukraine) have already been established, and more National Coalitions are expected to be established during 2020. The Irish Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition, launched in 2017, is often cited as an example of a well-established National Coalition that has clearly defined goals and a wide reach.
“The Irish Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition is a very useful initiative for this purpose. It brings together companies, social partners, non-profit organisations and education providers, engaged in tackling the lack of digital skills in Ireland, to share best practice and opportunities and to generate new ideas to increase digital literacy and ICT skills at all levels,” says Mary Cleary, Coordinator of the Irish National Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition. “The national coalition also gives us the opportunity to work alongside stakeholders from other EU member states, to broaden our perspective and to increase the range of initiatives that might be replicated in Ireland. We are also pleased and proud to share our own ideas with our partners in the European coalition, as we work together to ensure that everyone has the capability to function effectively and efficiently in a digital economy and society. The demand for digital skills is a global phenomenon and continues to grow in Ireland like in the rest of Europe. We need to be creative in the strategies that we use to develop and improve these skills.”
Currently, National Coalitions have been established in two Eastern partner countries – Armenia (2017) and Ukraine (2019) – with discussions on their establishment underway in other countries. To facilitate the establishment of National Coalitions in the remaining countries and to support the management and promotion of National Coalitions in Armenia and Ukraine, Guidelines for National Digital Skills Coalitions that summarise the key activities and principles for establishing and managing National Coalitions have been developed as a part of the EU4Digital Programme.
The Guidelines cover the key steps in establishing a running a National Coalition, including:
- Identifying potential National Coalition members;
- Identifying the goals of the National Coalition;
- Designing an action plan;
- Managing the National Coalition;
- Promoting the National Coalition.
The Guidelines also include links to several resources providing information on National Coalitions, the EU Coalition Members Charter, resources and best practices, and the EU Coalition pledge viewer.
Under the EU4Digital initiative, The European Union supports the implementation of digital skills strategies in the Eastern partner countries, acting to establish national coalitions for digital skills and jobs and a competence framework for SMEs and microbusinesses.
Find out more
European Commission: National coalitions