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Greece: new labour market skills diagnosis mechanism

A new skills diagnosis mechanism has been operating in Greece since the first semester of 2016. It addresses the need for updated, concrete and regular skills trend information, especially as an input for designing VET and employment policies. Its introduction is based on Law 4368/2016 provisions (February 2016) for a permanent, functional and credible mechanism; a joint Ministerial Decision (24013/410 of May 2016) provides for the introduction and operation of a relevant network and the supporting information system.

Governance of the new mechanism is shared:

  1. the Ministry of Labour coordinates its development and operation;
  2. the National Labour and Human Resources Institute EIEAD (former Employment Observatory Institute) is the scientific authority responsible for the mechanism, coordination of the stakeholder network, development of the methodology, and synthesis and production of results and the annual report;
  3. a scientific committee of experts provides advice and recommendations to drive continuous improvement of operation;
  4. the National Employment Committee, composed of high level government officials (such as general secretaries, public body administration), social partners and stakeholders, is informed on outputs to ensure relevant application of results.

Using evidence-based data, the mechanism aims to: 

  1. address demand for early identification of medium-term trends in labour market needs;
  2. rationalise the design of employment policies in accordance with training and education programmes to be implemented;
  3. support State efforts to increase the impact of VET (through development of required VET curricula), by providing necessary labour market information (LMI) that will inform evidence-based policy making in VET; this also fulfils provisions for VET planned in law 4336/2015;
  4. gradually incorporate all relevant information, data and intelligence, at national and local levels, such as updated input from Greek prefectures, permitting local needs and concerns to be addressed.

Though in its first year of operation, the mechanism has already produced an initial set of concrete results; the most important is the Annual report of the labour market diagnosis mechanism. Using a multivariate computation of dynamism of professions for 2011-15, the report presents prospects (in terms of employment/unemployment) for professions in each Greek region. 

An integral part of the Greek VET strategy, this mechanism supports the link between training programmes and planned ALM policies, mainly as an evidence-based tool for designing needed specialities for developing relevant occupational profiles. Outcome-based occupational profiles are important for well-informed curricula to be used for VET programmes. The new VET strategy will link recently developed apprenticeship schemes with the outcomes of the mechanism, though this is to become more systematised.