2nd day of the INNOVET webinar: Thematic Teams & best practices

The second day of the INNOVET webinar: Thematic Teams and best practices from partners

On the 2nd of June, the morning session was introduced by the Keynote Speaker Dr. Tuomo Kuosa, Director, Co-founder and Futurist at Futures Platform.
Dr. Kuosa stated that the most important thing affecting the future of VET 4.0 is the public/private funding, the future concerning qualification, learning on demand and its directions. From 4 scenarios i.e. Business as usual, enterprise colleges, global platforms, and training produced by public procurement, the first 3 scenarios are chosen. Questions such as: ‘where will that leave us, how are we going to work and how will it affect our management systems?’ are posed.

Living in a VUCA world (a US military expression i.e. Volatile, Uncertain, Complex Ambiguity) the explanation follows. There is the division between:
– known knows
– known unknowns
– unknown knows
– unknown unknown
and with these types of future knowledge from mega trends to science fiction the dividing lines of education are formed. The 3 driving trends are:
– an exponential growth of knowledge and data
– the impact of bio data, AI, Machine learning
– social media, the democratisation of knowledge production, dialogical knowledge facts.
An education and learning radar shows trends in education such as Lifelong Learning, a change in expertise for example, at the same time an increasing need for generalists. Cyber schools are becoming more common and we don’t exactly know where this is going. Blended learning is in the middle range change going in a different direction from cyber schools as it’s a combination of face-to-face education and AR and VR taking an important role in the future. In order to be successful in a VUCA world, the innovation management needs to be very agile. The value of degrees is a weakening trend and other qualifications are becoming more important. Amazon and Google provide their own qualifications and are very broad.
Might it be a possibility for VET schools to work with partners? A VET college in Finland offers 20 online courses. Regionally, working online covers more regions.
Another part of the morning session was dedicated to an introduction of the V E T 4 . 0 Thematic Theme. This Team is dedicated to understanding the impact of Industry 4.0 in VET and has been using the Futures Platform tool, an online solution to explore future trends and drivers of change to identify opportunities and risks to support your strategy development, risk management, innovation, and other situations where validated future content is needed. This Platform is an online foresight solution that helps individuals and teams to make future-proof plans. It monitors all industries globally to detect which trends and phenomena might have an impact on the future, so everyone can stay up-to-date on emerging changes (more info here). The main purpose is to understand the impact of the different changes happening at different levels (namely: societal, organizational, technological, global and Industry) in the VET sector and anticipate coping measures.
There are 2 main dimensions when talking about the future of VET namely: funding and resourcing (public Vs private) and purpose of the VET (learning on demand Vs qualifications). More specifically, what type of funding will be dominant in the future?  Are the assumptions concerning the ability of technological progress able to overcome physical limits to the conventional VET education? The last issue is an uncertain and a key limiting factor.
The goal of the workshop was to explore and discuss these questions from 3 different lenses perspectives, namely:

Group 1: Business as usual       
Vocational training is based on existing networks of educational institutions whose main task is to produce experts for the labour market. The way competences are mapped is based on the existence of different kind of vocational qualifications. The permission to train and award qualifications is obtained from national education authorities. Teaching takes place in different learning environments, managed by educational institutions. There are also learning environments in different geographical locations that are not optimal in terms of student’s volume. In addition to producing knowledge, educational institutions have other tasks, and they also have a strong social responsibility for disadvantaged learners.
Group 2: Global Platforms       
The training markets are global and main producers are large international companies. The international training materials and systems have been localized to the needs of different countries and cultures, and the training is mainly carried out through digital channels, but physical training units have also been located in the most important places in terms of customer volumes. Learners can use a socially supported personal training account for tuition fees.
Group 3: Company colleges      
Companies train employees for their own needs in their own academies. The content, implementation methods, duration and other characteristics of the training are inextricably linked to the needs of the company and the industry. “General studies” have been eliminated from the “curricula” and the focus of the activities is on getting skilled workforce to work in the company. Business schools do not have a social function, but people who have the prerequisites to work in company jobs have access to studies.
To this aim, 3 working groups were established during the session to explore further each one of the above perspectives.
In the afternoon session, four good practices were presented as follows:

  • Edu4Pro-product by Kari Puumalainen, Ylä-Savo College, Finland

Ylä-Savo College shared a holistic model that can be used to lead/manage VET colleges and measure the outcomes of the organisation in real time. The model is utilising the best practices of quality-process and knowledge management.

  • Moving Generation by Annalisa Palano, Uniser, Italy

UNISER presented the “Moving Generation”, a web platform for mobility projects management. It connects sending organisations, hosting partners and mobility participants, digitalising the workflow and the exchange of information between all actors involved. Moving Generation provides mobility participants online access to all information about their experience ensuring compliance with the GDPR.

  • Implementation and Evaluation of Soft Skills (IESS) by Melanie Huyghe, Heilig-Hartinstituut T. O., Belgium

Heilig Hartinstituut Leuven (BE) presented their KA1 project IESS (Implementation and Evaluation of Soft Skills). The school offers training for future hairdressers, aestheticians and sales representatives. It is an added value for the last year students that they can do an internship in the Netherlands where they are hosted by Groep Landstede. Due to Corona, online activities have been organised in 2021. Melanie Huyghe explained in further detail the aspects of digitalisation, innovation, sustainability of the project.

  • Duurzaamheidsfabriek (Sustainability Factory) by Daniel Wortel, ROC DA VINCI, The Netherlands

ROC Da Vinci presented the Sustainability Factory, an experience related with Smart Industry, Robotisation, Digitalisation and Energy Transition, focusing also on how to build innovative strengths by linking innovation to lifelong learning in a structural triple helix collaboration (Education providers, Knowledge institutes, SME’s, Corporates and (inter)national, regional innovation structures and skills).

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