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Apprenticeships in Europe


Apprenticeships in Europe

ILO meeting to discuss apprenticeship systems in Europe

Experience shows apprenticeships can have a positive impact on youth employment. Government, employer and worker representatives from EU countries are meeting to discuss best practices and measures to further improve their efficiency.

GENEVA – The International Labour Organization (ILO) is organizing a Sub-Regional Workshop on Apprenticeship Systems in Europe from 9-12 December 2013.

Government, employer and worker representatives from European countries will discuss practical steps to improve apprenticeship systems. Participants’ discussion and exchange of experiences will be based on country profiles from Greece, Cyprus, Portugal, Spain, Lithuania, and Poland.

International experts from Austria and Denmark will give examples for good practice in apprenticeship design.

"The positive impact of well-designed apprenticeships has been clearly demonstrated. In countries where a fifth or more of all 16-24 year olds are in apprenticeships, such as Austria, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Denmark, youth unemployment is lower than in other European countries where apprenticeships are not that common,” says Michael Axmann, a skills development expert at the ILO.

The meeting is expected to produce national action plans aimed at improving apprenticeship systems. In countries like Greece and Cyprus, these plans will be supported by technical cooperation initiatives.

As part of its facilitating role of the G20 Task Force on Employment, the ILO published in November 2012 an "
Overview of Apprenticeship Systems and Issues” that reviews success factors of apprenticeship programmes. Out of this position paper the ILO has developed the so-called "Key Elements of Quality Apprenticeships”.

The ILO meeting also responds to the Oslo Declaration and its call for action, which – among other activities – proposed facilitating the exchange of labour market experiences and good practice in Europe.