Creative Skills Europe – what we have learned?

,  20 June 2016

Over the past eighteen months, Creative Skills Europe has collected labour market intelligence on the audiovisual and live performance sectors from different EU countries, including the UK.

The full report may be downloaded here, and the conclusions provide some useful guidance for the future

The participating nations were: Belgium, Estonia, France, Finland, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom.  The report is intended as a first step in an ongoing discussion and cooperation to at improve professional training at national and European levels.

Of course, this is just a glance at the industry, and more detailed labour market intelligence, covering all the creative sectors in the UK, can be found in our series of Creative Blueprints.

Recommendations to improve professional training

The report made a number of recommendations, many of which are already being applied in our own industries (though with room for improvement in all):

1. Develop labour market intelligence

Data needs to be collected and made available to the public. As mentioned above, this is done for the creative sectors in the UK via the Creative Blueprints.

2. Facilitating exchange and cooperation

The report strongly recommended that opportunities were created for educational bodies and professional associations to meet, exchange views and design joint initiatives. The National Skills Academy fulfils this role in the UK, bringing together industry and education, both at the annual National Conference and semi-annual Creative Education Forum.

3. Equipping skills for the digital environment

In the creative sector, digital advances now demand new skills for creation and production, new technical skills, and the capability to invent new business models. Providing backstage workers with the latest training for the industry, used in a real-life environment, is one of the rationales for the very first diploma of our National College, which begins this September.

4. Providing tools for career management

More than ever before, creative professionals need to update their skills, innovate and reinvent their careers to stay relevant in the industry. The report emphasises providing workers with proper pathways to build their portfolios and career prospects. Career advice and guidance has long been a mainstay of our work, and the Creative Choices platform continues to provide free information, advice and guidance directly from experts in the industry.

5. Schemes for on-the-job learning

The report concluded that new approaches must be developed to enable learners to acquire skills ‘on-the-job’ and understand what is required of them by industry. Echoing our own work as a Training Prover for creative apprentices, it stated that, “Apprenticeship programmes and vocational training must become central tools for the sector’s development.”

We look forward to hearing more about the creative industries in other nations, and how we can both learn from, and inspire good skills practices in the future.

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