Matching Needs and Competencies on the Labour Market
In order to raise awareness of the importance of the UNESCO Guidelines on the Recognition, Validation and Accreditation (RVA) of the Outcomes of the Non-formal and Informal Learning the coordinators of the Back to Work project invited UIL to participate in the international conference The Role of Validation of Competences in Professional Counselling of Adults, held in Thessaloniki, Greece, on 7 and 8 December. The conference was organised as part of European project on counselling migrants, financed as part of the Leonardo da Vinci Transfer of Innovation programme. Seven organisations from Romania, Denmark, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Greece, Germany and Bulgaria, organised the conference with the aim of facilitating better matching between needs and competencies on the labour market.
The conference brought together around 60 participants, including representatives from institutions of higher education, organisations working with migrants, employment counselors and adult education practictioners, with the goal of sharing techniques and best practices and building capacity among practitioners in implementing RVA systems. After a welcome address from Ms Simona Sava, Raúl Valdés-Cotera, Programme Specialist at UIL, held a presentation on UNESCO RVA guidelines and global trends in employment for the 21st century. Other presentations included a case study on issues and challenges in implementing validation frameworks in Greece, held by Magda Trantallidi from the Greek General Secretariat for Lifelong Learning.
Some of the main conclusions were that
- the European debt crisis is actually affecting the labour markets, and validation and recognition are not necessarily responding in a way that helps to find jobs.
- the price that learners are currently charged for the certification (around EUR 250) needs to be further analysed and discussed, particularly given present economic and political conditions, and
- recognition, validation and accreditation of learning outcomes in all settings and modalities brings important benefits in reducing poverty, creating jobs and ensuring social inclusion.