One of the main challenges that employers face today in Europe is to find – and keep employees with the right skills in an increasingly dynamic business environment. Small companies, in particular, find difficulties in finding the right staff, even in countries facing high rates of youth unemployment. To tackle this problem we must build and constantly improve cooperation between education and training providers and businesses so that young people will enter the labour market with the skills needed by employers.
The European Business Forum on Vocational Training 2014: "Business and VET - Partners for Growth and Competitiveness" will be held September 23-24 and hosted by the European Commission, Directorate-General for Education and Culture, in Brussels, Belgium. Attendees will to take part in the dialogue for developing cooperation between policy makers and stakeholders from the world of vocational education and training (VET) and the business community.
In this Forum, the spotlight will be put on how we can spur growth and competitiveness in Europe by developing closer cooperation between VET providers and companies. Panel discussions will regroup important stakeholders on why and how companies and schools should work closer together and why businesses should invest in the development of vocational and education training. Workshops will closely focus on how to meet the skills needs in key economic sectors, how to develop more entrepreneurial VET and how to strengthen the provision of high quality apprenticeships. In particular, we aim to highlight the role of small and medium-sized companies.
The outcomes of the 2014 Forum will serve as an input to the new Commission and for further EU policy making in the scope of the review of Europe 2020, ET2020 and the Bruges Communique under the Copenhagen Process.
The Forum will gather about 350 stakeholders representing governments, vocational education and training providers, employers and other European and national stakeholders and social partner organisations.