From education to employment

SSDA Planning for the World of Tomorrow

The Sector Skills Development Agency (SSDA) will be convening a forum of leading academics and researchers next week to address the possible ways that education providers can meet the UK’s future skills needs.

The SSDA, the Government body responsible for the UK’s skills strategy, have called the conference to look at vocational training and work-based learning. One of the people responsible for the conference, Professor Mike Campbell of the SSDA explained: “Bringing together some of the foremost thought leaders and decision makers in the field of skills, training and productivity is going to be an extremely powerful meeting of minds.

“The conference will provide the appropriate forum to air and discuss some of the most pressing skills issues for businesses today,” he continued. “As well as looking at what opportunities and challenges we”ll face in the future, we”ll be able to think strategically about the actions needed to embed employer leadership and how to use the sector approach in the most effective way.”


Professor Campbell went on to say: “The conference will be quite unique in the way we invite delegates to identify and tackle future skills challenges. We want delegates to step into the year 2020 and look back to see the things that needed to have been achieved. To help them to step into the future we have produced a film of four scenarios, each equally plausible picture of the future, in which fictitious characters describe how they decide on their careers and develop their skills in the future.”

The conference will develop scenarios designed to help produce a series of actions for the Skills for Business network. There will also be some noted speakers including Professor Richard Scase, Europe’s leading socio-economic forecasters and author of several books and Richard Worsley, co-director of The Tomorrow Project and co-author of Working in the 21st Century.

The SSDA are making great strives to find solutions to the UK’s looming skills crisis. With the competition from tiger economies and Eastern Europe making manufacturing less and less viable, it is important that steps are taken now to develop skills in technology, research and development. It is in the more specialised fields that the UK will be able to compete effectively and it is critical that we lead the way and provide the best education and training in these areas.

Dan Atkinson

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