EU launches first e-Skills week
Digital technology is essential for Europe to stay competitive. And for you, good skills in this area could deliver a more stimulating job, in a fast-moving environment.
The internet and related technologies have revolutionised the way we live. But the most recent survey shows that, in 2005, over a third of Europeans were not computer literate.
Although a significant share of these were older people, more than 10% of 16-24 year olds confessed complete ignorance in this area. Not to mention that fewer and fewer young people are choosing to study IT, leading to shortages of qualified staff in the sector.
Information technologies are now part of every economic activity. They boost company performance and are a source of innovation and productivity gains. The EU needs qualified professionals in this area if it is to hold its own on world markets and attract inward investment.
This is why, in 2007, the European Commission adopted a long term programme to encourage computer skills. This included a campaign to raise awareness among students, young professionals and small firms of the many opportunities technology provides. It culminates this week in European e-Skills week (1–5 March).
Throughout the week, special events across Europe are expected to attract some 300 000 people. The Commission will also use the occasion to showcase the results of its e-Skills programme. And new technologies will also be at the heart of the EU's new economic strategy for Europe – "Europe 2020" – which will push sustainable growth based on knowledge and innovation.