The digital transition, a key priority of the European Commission and Member States, relies on a digitally skilled workforce, digitally empowered citizens and a strong digital education system. Following President von der Leyen‘s call for “leaders’ attention and a structured dialogue at top-level” in her 2021 State of the Union address, and delivering on the Digital Education Action Plan and the European Pillar of Social Rights Action Plan, the Commission announced today to kick off such structured dialogue with Member States. At the occasion of a project group meeting of nine involved College Members, Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager, Vice-President Margaritis Schinas, and Commissioners Mariya Gabriel, Nicolas Schmit and Thierry Breton declared: “Digital education and skills are a cornerstone of the digital transition. For our Digital Decade, we have set ambitious targets, such as to equip 80% of people with basic digital skills and to have 20 million ICT specialists employed in the EU by 2030. We will only achieve this if we work as one in the EU, at all levels. This is why we are very pleased that the structured dialogue is launched today with a roadmap for action. We have set some ambitious objectives, and only by working all together we will be able to reach our targets.” Member States are invited to join the dialogue and to agree jointly on the key enabling factors to make digital education and training effective and inclusive. It will include different branches and institutions of government, from education and training institutions to infrastructure providers, to private sector, social partners and civil society. The structured dialogue will run until end-2022. Based on its outcomes, the Commission will propose by the end of the same year concrete initiatives on enabling factors for digital education and skills.
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