Getting Skills Right: Good Practice in Adapting to Changing Skill Needs

A Perspective on France, Italy, Spain, South Africa and the United Kingdom

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This report identifies effective strategies to tackle skills imbalances, based on five country-specific policy notes for France, Italy, Spain, South Africa and the United Kingdom. It provides a comparative assessment of practices and policies in the following areas: the collection and use of information on skill needs to foster a better alignment of skills acquisitions with labour market needs; the design of education and training systems and their responsiveness to changing skill needs; the re-training of unemployed individuals; and the improvement of skills use and skills matching in the labour market. The assessment is based on country visits, desk research and data analysis conducted by the OECD secretariat in the five countries reviewed. Examples of good practice from other countries are also discussed.


How countries assess skill imbalances

To be successful, policy intervention to address skill mismatch and skill shortages requires access to high-quality information about the current and future skill needs of the labour market. The OECD Skills for Jobs Database can assist policy makers in responding to skill imbalances, and this information should be integrated with other skill assessment and anticipation exercises (SAA) carried out in each country to respond to specific information needs, notably at the sectoral and geographical levels. The reviewed countries vary by the nature of these exercises, the involvement of stakeholders and the use of the outcomes in policy making. This chapter identifies key differences in the type of exercises conducted and stakeholders’ involvement in the five countries reviewed, and puts forward examples of good practice to improve the production and use of skill needs information.


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