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e-Skills International is a new initiative, launched by the European Commission in January 2013, to understand better the international dimension of e-skills and ICT professionalism, with a view to anticipating change and identifying possible opportunities for cooperation.


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Why are e-skills so important ?

The importance of information and communication technologies (ICT) in the global economy is unquestionable: the accelerating transition to a global knowledge-based economy as well as increasing levels of innovation and of automation within organisations, demands the successful exploitation of ICT. But successful exploitation of ICT in turn, demands the availability of a workforce possessing the relevant ICT knowledge and skills. Many countries across the globe are confronted by e-skills shortages - with insufficient numbers of adequately trained ICT practitioners to meet the growing needs of organisations, acting as a brake on regional productivity, competitiveness and innovation.



What will this initiative do ?

This initiative is a first attempt to engage with relevant international participants from government, industry and education in order to understand the current international landscape for e-skills and ICT professionalism, identify common challenges, share examples of best practice, and then set out a tentative roadmap for collaboration with the aim of maturing the ICT profession in the longer term. The research study is looking at the issue from a global perspective - but with particular emphasis on major regional countries such as Brazil, China, India, US, Russia, Japan, Australia and South Africa, as well as the European Union.



What kind of topics are being examined in the research ?

The list below provides an indication of the range of subjects being examined:

• The international dimension of e-skills and the impact of globalisation on the demand and supply for e-skills in various regions of the world

• Policy initiatives for tackling ICT skills shortages  and best practices to enhance supply and quality of ICT professionals

• Industry-academia partnerships

• Maturing and enhancing the image of the ICT profession, career paths and competences (qualifications, certification, and accreditation), massive open online courses, bodies of knowledge and learning strategies for continuing professional development

The focus is on ICT practitioners and the skills that they require. As such, basic digital literacy for the population at large will not be examined in any depth.



Who is doing the research ?

A consortium of organisations has been contracted by the European Commission, following an open call for tenders, for undertaking the work in 2013: Innovation Value Institute (IVI), Council of European Professional Informatics Societies (CEPIS), IDC and Empirica.



How can i get involved ?

Over the year, the consortium will engage with stakeholders via a combination of interviews, surveys, workshops as well as a final conference. We are particularly keen to hear from the following stakeholders:

• National government and agencies in charge of ICT and e-skills

• Business leaders, senior HR/IT Managers and ICT associations

• Experts in e-skills and ICT professionalism

• Experts in ICT sourcing etc.


Interim report


The interim report has been published and is available for download by clicking on the icon below. A final report is now being prepared, including additional material on the impact of globalisation as well as incorporating feedback  received on the inter im report. We would be interested to hear any comments you may have on the interim report. Send your feedback to:


The final report will be published in April 2014.

e-Skills International - Conference event


The European Commission is organising a related conference on 26 March 2014 in Brussels.


The event will bring together leading experts from industry, academia, national e-skills institutes, industry associations as well as related governmental entities. The event is free but will be by invitation only.


Please pre-register at the dedicated project website: (Registration opening end-Jan)



Who should I contact for more information or to share my views ?

Please contact the project team at:


Phone: +353 1 708 6931





These activities are part of the EU e-Skills agendaOfficial logo of the European Commissio




Mockup image of airport departure board with text "Project International - Incoming"