Skills Development: Promising Approaches in Developed Countries and Emerging Economies

Publication | November 2013

This policy brief draws on presentations and discussions at the ADB International Skills Development Forum held in ADB headquarters in Manila in December 2012 forum.

The forum provided a platform to share the knowledge and experience of advanced countries in setting up successful skills development institutions. The experiences of Australia, Germany, the Republic of Korea, and Singapore were shared by leading practitioners and policy makers.

Key Points

  • The government has a vital role in initially funding and establishing effective technical and vocational education and skills development systems.
  • Partnerships with the private sector that promote training contracts with mandatory placements improve job prospects of trainees.
  • There is a need to increase the share of students benefiting from apprenticeships and traineeships with employers.
  • Policies that enable user choice in training for employers and trainees help to increase competitiveness and effectiveness of training.
  • Workforce development funds to finance training are powerful means of linking training with the world of work and improving relevance of training.
  • The prestige of technical and vocational education and training can be enhanced through new credentials such as applied degrees as well as through higher wage realization for skilled workers - partnerships with employers is thus crucial.
  • Several pathways for skills development need to be available to youth with flexibility and opportunity to acquire skills through modular qualifications.
  • Flexibility and responsiveness of training institutions to the evolving needs of industry are crucial attributes of successful skills development systems.

Additional Details

  • Education
  • Technical and vocational education and training
  • Social development and protection
  • Social protection
  • Social protection - labor and employment

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