UNIDO and the Permanent Mission of Japan to the International Organizations in Vienna have co-hosted a webinar titled ‘Joining Forces for Industrial Skills Development’, bringing together participants from the public and private sectors, development partners, academia, and civil society. The webinar is the second in the series: ‘Partnering for ISID: New challenges and opportunities for the UNIDO-Japan cooperation’.
In his opening remarks, Professor Alpha Tejan Wurie, Sierra Leone’s Minister of Technical and Higher Education, said that “investment in technical and vocational education and training is critical to fill skills deficiencies. Partnerships with manufacturing companies and drive for private capital investment are the keys.”
Tsutomu Himeno, Japan’s Ambassador to the Republic of Ghana, the Republic of Liberia and the Republic of Sierra Leone, mentioned “Japan places emphasis on human security, and the concept serves not only protection but also empowerment. Industrial skills development is one of the most effective approaches to promote it.”
The opening remarks were followed by a keynote presentation by Professor Shoko Yamada of Nagoya University who highlighted the challenges and opportunities of industrial skills development in developing countries.
This led to a panel discussion, moderated by Virpi Stucki, Chief of UNIDO’s Rural Entrepreneurship, Job Creation and Human Security Division, in which panelists from the public, private, development, and academic sectors shared their insights into the solutions for narrowing the skills gap.
Reflecting on the discussions, the moderator concluded the event with the following key takeaway messages:
- Strengthening industry relevance of technical and vocational education and training (TVET) is important for narrowing the skills gap and enabling industrial growth and job creation;
- Strategic partnership and coordination between public, private, and development partners is key to creating shared value for all;
- The examples from UNIDO-Japan cooperation projects underline the evolution and replicability potential of such a partnership approach.