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EVENT | 26 October 2016

Launching the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition - Boosting Europe's Digital skills

The European Commission hosts the launch of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition, a new flagship initiative bringing together all stakeholders and Member States committed to reduce the digital skills gaps in Europe.


The launch event was a great sucess with over 300 attendees from 35 countries. The Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition has officially started. At the launch event 39 organisations came forward and presented pledges to take action on the digital skills gaps. From 258 nominations to the European Digital Skills Award, 16 finalist were selected and 4 winners announced at the conference. There were a number of interesting discussions and most of them are avaliable as videos from our audiovisual services and on our Facebook page. Photos can be found at the audiovisual services and on our Twitter account. To join the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition visit the Coalition web site

Event description 

As digitisation is transforming our societies and the way we work, digital skills are now a key competence to participate in our society. And yet, 100 million Europeans have never used the Internet, one third of all workers have insufficient digital skills and we're heading towards a situation where we may lack as many as 750 000 ICT professionals by 2020. We all collectively need to do more to boost digital skills.

This is why the New Skills Agenda for Europe announced the launch of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition, a partnership gathering all stakeholders and Member States to pledge actions and share best practices to reduce the digital skills gaps in Europe.

The Coalition will be officially launched on the 1st of December at a high-level conference at the Square Brussels. The conference is now fully booked. If you've registered but can't attend, please cancel you regsitration. 

The conference will be held in English and is free of charge. Registration starts at 08.30. 

List of speakers and list of participants at the conference.

Follow @DigitalSkillEU or #DSJCoalition on Twitter for updates.   

Conference programme 

A more detailed version of the programme is attached as pdf.  

08h30     Registration and coffee

09h15     Welcome by Andrus Ansip, Vice President European Commission and
               moderator Karen Coleman, Journalist, author and founder of EuroParlRadio
               (Room Silver Hall)

09h30     Keynote on digitisation and jobs by Ryan Avent, Journalist for The
               Economist and author of the book "The Wealth of Humans: Work,
               Power, and Status in the Twenty-first Century"

10h00     Panel on digitisation and jobs (Room Silver Hall)

               Claire Bury, Deputy Director General, DG CNECT European Commission, 
               Lowri Evans, Director General, DG GROW European Commission,
               Michel Servoz, Director General DG EMPL European Commission, 
               Eva Paunova, Member of the European Parliament,
               Luc Triangle, Secretary General industriAll European Trade Union, 
               Jorge Schnura, COO & Co-Founder source{d}

11h10     Coffee break 

Launch of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition 

11h30     Introduction to the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition by Günther H. Oettinger,
               European Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society (Room Silver Hall)

11h45     Presentation of the "shared concept" for a digital skills strategy by
               Alexander De Croo, Deputy Prime Minister of Belgium and Minister of
               Development Cooperation, Digital Agenda, Telecom and Postal Services
               (Room Silver Hall)

12h00     European Digital Skills Awards 2016 by Günther H. Oettinger,
               European Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society (Room Silver Hall)

12h15     Pledges to the Coalition (Room Silver Hall)

12h30     Lunch and exhibition area of best practice projects

14h00     Plenary panel on digital skills and education with Tibor Navracsics,
               European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport 

               Marc Durando, Executive Director, European Schoolnet (EUN)
               Mirta Michilli, Director of Fondazione Mondo Digitale
               Alessandro Bogliolo, Professor and head of the School of Information
               Science and Technology, University of Urbino 
               Javier Güemes, Technical Director of the International Relations Office,
               Spanish National Organisation for the Blind (ONCE),
               Kristel Rillo, Deputy Head of E-Services Department, Ministry of Education
               and Research of Estonia

15h30     Parallel sessions

               1. Assessing Digital Competences - the Digital competence framework 
               (Room 202)
               2. Coding Bootcamps and accelerated training programmes for digital jobs 
              (Room 204)
               3. Digital skills needs of Industry (Room Silver Hall)
               4. National coalitions and local initiatives (Room 201 A/B)

16h45     Reporting back from parallel session and the way forward by
               Roberto Viola, Director General, DG CNECT European Commission

17h00     Networking drink 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • Can I forward the invitation to my colleagues? - Yes. The registration is open for anyone but people with  personal invitations will be prioritised.  

  • How do I reach the venue? See attached pdf: How to get to the Square 

  • Are there any sponsorship opportunities at the conference? - No

  • Will there be an exhibition area and can my organisation have a place? - There will be a small exhibition area and the exhibitors have been contacted separately. 

  • Are there any speaking opportunities? - The programme is now full and there are no further speaking opportunities. 

  • Can I receive help from the organising team to manage my travel? - No, unfortunately we are not able to assist on this. 

  • Will I be reimbursed for my time, travel and expenses to the conference. - Not unless your invitation specifically stated so. 

  • Will the conference be held in English? - Yes. There will be no translation services available. 

  • Is the venue accessible? - Yes  

  • Will there be a vegetarian/vegan/gluten free option at lunch? - Yes, send special dietery requests to cnect-digital-skills@ec.europa.eu

  • What will happen when I register? - You will receive an automatic response confirming receipt. 

  • Can you recommend any hotels? - We do not have any negotiated rates but there are a number of hotels close to the venue. Look at for example Booking.com or Hotels.com 


Conference Programme
How to get to the Square
Session 2 Accelerated training programs Coding Bootcamps

Map / Location

Square - Brussels Meeting Centre, Glass Entrance, Mont des Arts, Brussels, Belgium



European Commission

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