Jiva Technology

Ideas needed .. quickly.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation, in conjunction with UK in a Changing Europe, a think-tank drawing on academic research to look at the UK-EU relationship, have been taking a closer look at the issues that drove voters to choose Leave in the 2016 EU referendum.

Setting aside the politics and sometimes angry debate that goes with those politics, the picture that emerges is reasonably clear. The report identifies five key issues, but also asks participants to suggest solutions to the problems they see.

Of the four suggested solutions, 2 relate to skills and training. What is becoming evident is that whilst the UK has invested heavily in the provision of tertiary education, not everyone wants to go to university and for those people who choose not to, skills training is thin on the ground. Its even worse when you consider low-paid workers who want to gain skills or retrain as a way of moving up the pay scale.

Making it hard to acquire new skills away from university is hard, not only on those directly affected, but on the economy in general. As we’ve said before, technology and demographics mean that people will need to train and retrain multiple times in a working life. Skills obsolescence will become the norm not the exception.

Solutions to these problems are needed and they’re needed quickly before the political frustrations that have surfaced across Europe turn into something ugly. Deploying solutions quickly means using technology, because bricks and mortar solutions won’t move quickly enough to solve the problem. That most likely means an EdTech solution to at least some of the problems. Not everything can be delivered over the internet, particularly when it comes to practical skills, but a blended approach, along the lines of certain Swiss DUAL-T model, goes at least some way to show the problem is being addressed.

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