Portuguese Coalition for Digital Employability

The European Commission is leading a partnership that aims to bridge the digital skills gap in Europe and to fill jobs in the area of Information Technology and Communication (ITC). It is estimated that there will be a shortage of 900,000 ITC professionals in 2020, constituting a serious hindrance to recovery and economic growth. In Portugal, the gap between supply and demand is more alarming in that there is a high level of unemployment, particularly among the young. At the same time, countless companies and institutions, particularly SMEs (which constitute a significant part of the Portuguese business network) do not make use of ITC, which restricts the development of the digital economy on a national level.

In view of the situation described above, several key national stakeholders, motivated by this intention, agreed to form the Portuguese Coalition for Digital Employability and to work together to draw up a proposal for a National Strategy and Action Plan for Digital Employability 2015-2020. The proposal, which is based around several key pillars, was intended to be submitted to government figures in the areas of economics, education, science and employment and was presented in June 2015.

The aims of the National Strategy and Action Plan for Digital Employability 2015-2020 are as follows: to reduce significantly the shortage of ITC professionals; to bring about continuous improvement in the working population’s opportunities to acquire the ITC skills needed for employment in the public and private sectors as well the skills of the general public; to leverage the number of companies that make use of digital technology and the number of digitally-based companies; and to develop the digital economy and markets.