Greetings and general considerations
Nowadays we have an incredible quantity of goods and resources available that humankind has never had before, but everyone can see how food, social inclusion and equity, decent job, access to education and many more other rights, are commonly very far to be of everyone.
According to the 2018 World Bank report, the climate change could force over 140 million to migrate within countries by 2050 and from many parts, the voices call to create new walls, to fight and kill the ‘invaders’ and to continue to stress the planet with uncontrolled extractions, emissions and or any other kind of activity able to make someone more and more rich.
Any occasion for these groups is good to invent a conflict, to produce more weapons, to move the pure madness to the power, to increase intolerable inequalities in the distribution of wealth, to make discriminations, to create new walls and new barriers and to block the free circulation of ideas, values and individuals.
And what is our role of educators? Do we have any duty against all this? Do we have any obligation to talk or to think different from others? Are we anymore able to distinguish among a tv show and the real life?
Today I was writing my greetings to you for taking part to this discussion and I was asking to myself, what could be the reason that has convinced hundreds of my honourable colleagues to find interesting this discussion. In the end of all considerations, the skillman network is just a young and very modest initiative, is not provided with any tangible capital and it is related to the development of the skills in the advanced manufacturing sector. So, what does the skillman network concerns about these big issues of the equity, the food distribution, the migrations? It is just my wrong opinion or really there are other colleagues thinking that our voice not only would do, but also - could do - something against all the conflicts, the weapon productions, the wrong decisions taken by few people in the power to choose their own alone, the destiny of our planet?
Why we would write something in this forum and why we would put efforts in communicating our views here if we wouldn’t have any vision on how to change our communities, our dimensions and our planet?
Why to spend our time for joining a group of educators, VET or industry experts, people belonging to public institutions or to the world of work if we wouldn’t have a strategy and a vision for the future of the education and of the TVET in particular?
What we have in common that makes us interested to share our ideas about the TVET and what lets us to think that our voice can change something?
Our initial intention, I mean the skillman core team intention, was to put together a coalition of private-sector partners and others focused on innovation in the TVET panorama surrounding the challenges of a sustainable education. Day by day, in the last two years, our strong commitment for the ethical values, introduced within the debate about the ‘skills for the future’, has become more and more clear and relevant and at the end of this period, we can agree that the ethical values are a fantastic pillar to drive our discussions.
We really think, we are convinced, that when we seat at a table where the ‘skills for the future’ are discussed, the ethical component is not anymore an option.
When we work to set a skills package, the ethical component is not anymore an option.
Day by day our thought has started to be more important and more simple in its application to the daily work. We worked to design a set of essential skills for the advanced manufacturing sector and we included our commitment for the ethical aspects of the work. Doing it we have understood that at the table of the skills there are more interests that drive the discussions than the ones that are declared.
Our drive on how to work to identify the skills for the future started analysing the DACUM method, then we passed through the Cedefop guidelines and the ILO – Skilkovo method for skills foresight and finally we have identified our own skills foresight procedures.
We have a commitment and we want understand very well if our skills foresight method is also concretely suitable to detect the need of ethical behaviours in the workforce and if it is effective to evidence the related skills for a future life where the workers are not just ‘defected robot’ with the problem to have breaks during the day or to rest the weekend or to be motivated to be more productive.
It seems right to think that the technological skills will be taken in charge by robot and AI and that our work in TVET will have to move to prepare people able to use more and more the social skills as first: communicate, interact, socialise, understand in group, collaborate etc etc… and finally, I want say clear: d e c i d e! yes, take decisions and not only, I mean, take technical decisions, but take right decisions. Not wrong, but right decisions. Any AI machine can take ‘right’ decisions and HAVE to take right decisions, but when the right decisions have to be taken by humans, well! At that moment starts the real discussion about what is right and what is not right.
Yes, large debates about what implications bring the AI design for human rights etc, but who discuss the same in the setting of the future skills of our learners? I’m here for this discussion.
Dear colleagues, visitors, individuals and occasional of this forum: welcome to our discussion about the future of the work, the future of the skills, the future of the DECISIONS that our learners will be able to take deploying the skills that they will have the occasion to develop thanks to the work of our small community of educators and TVET experts.
I am very happy: more than 400 persons subscribed the webinars and nearly 100 countries are covered with our modest infrastructure. I thank you all very much! To all of you, sincerely thanks to have reacted positively to our invitation and to be here. A special thanks to all the skillman team members to be working now to organise our discussion and to have started several weeks ago. In the last days our team has been concretely flooded by messages, but has always continued to help everybody and has finally set the best technological solutions necessary for the online discussions.
It’s necessary to create partnerships and to foster collaborations across countries that bring new ideas to life, but we can’t do it alone. Collaboration is at the heart of our mission and we look at a new way to improve our roles in TVET engaging innovators, investors, companies, institutions and policy makers from every point of the global education chain, and providing a platform for them to connect and work together for a more sustainable future, starting from the TVET and the skills foresight and development in particular.
Welcome to the debate. I wish you the most successful experience.
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