OECD Skills Outlook 2021

Learning for Life

image of OECD Skills Outlook 2021

Lifelong learning is key if individuals are to succeed in labour markets and societies shaped by megatrends such as increases in life expectancy, rapid technological changes, globalisation, migration, environmental changes and digitalisation, as well as sudden shocks like the COVID-19 pandemic. In a fast-changing and uncertain world, lifelong learning can help individuals adapt and become resilient to external shocks. While government support remains valuable to ensure that major structural changes do not lead to deep tears in the social fabric, creating a culture of lifelong learning gives individuals themselves agency to manage change. This calls for evidence on the best ways to support lifelong learning journeys, so that individuals can “learn how to learn”. This edition of the OECD Skills Outlook 2021 explores how policies, particularly those that govern skills development and use, can best promote lifelong learning for all. The report exploits comparative quantitative data to highlight the key role played by socio-emotional and motivational factors in shaping successful engagement with lifelong learning. While such factors are essential to sustain lifelong learning in general, the pandemic has further increased their relevance.

English Also available in: French

Navigating skill demands in turbulent times

This chapter presents evidence on the widespread impact of the COVID‑19 pandemic on OECD labour markets by tracking the evolution of job postings published on line. The results indicate that the pandemic had heterogeneous effects on postings aimed at high- and low-skilled workers, and led to a surge in vacancies requiring employees to work remotely. The chapter discusses how, in the midst of such an uncertain period, workers need to become resilient by enhancing their ability to adapt to change. It explores new indicators identifying transversal skills, and the specific wage and employment returns these yield in the labour market. Looking ahead, the chapter analyses which occupations and skills are expected to increase or decrease in demand owing to megatrends, and proposes pathways for retraining workers who are most likely to be exposed to disruption.

English Also available in: French



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