About the Project
Around 99 % of all EU companies are SMEs providing up to 70 % of all jobs. Generally, SMEs have good future growth prospects, however they are specifically well placed to solve environmental problems, hence grow in the green economy. Nowadays the biggest bottleneck is the significant skills shortage in most economic sectors while job vacancies in SMEs and overall unemployment, in particular youth unemployment, is steadily growing. Through cooperation between educational institutions and industry, work-based learning is a prominent tool to eliminate bottlenecks and create conditions for further growth in innovative market segments.
To continuously coordinate education and skills requirements, and address skills shortages higher education institutions, education and training providers, and economic chambers from 6 countries build up and establish an alliance for the sectors “Water, Wastewater, Waste and Circular Economy”. This alliance is then extended to 13 countries with 68 education and labour market actors and continues to perform its duties as a centre of competence “Eco Innovation” in the long term.
The partnership develops tools according to work-based learning principles that are piloted and evaluated: a training programme for strong learners in the initial vocational training, a program with six further vocational training courses, a train the trainer programme, an integration programme for the unemployed and a bachelor’s degree programme with 4 modules. These programmes teach sector-specific skills in both environmental technologies and management. Furthermore, in three countries with predominantly school-based vocational training, dual education systems are introduced in initial, continuing and higher education. All qualifications will be transferred to 11 project and 68 associated partners from 13 countries, who receive implementation advice. Extensive dissemination activities are carried out for free use of project outcomes by all interested parties.