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Germany: enquiry committee on vocational education in the digital world

Where and how should VET be adapted to the demands of the digital workplace? How can the strengths of the system be further developed and possible access barriers reduced?

The newly established enquiry committee on vocational education in the digital world will develop answers to these core questions on future VET developments. The Committee will be investigating the development prospects of VET in the future world of work and will examine the economic and social potentials of modernisation.

The President of the Bundestag, Wolfgang Schäuble, opened the inaugural meeting on September 27, 2018. He emphasized the new challenges for vocational education in times of digitisation. The members identified key issues, such as the continuing education sector, teacher training, universities and research institutes, business, schools and pedagogy. The committee comprises 19 members of the Bundestag (German Federal Parliament) and 19 external experts, including representatives from trade unions, schools, further education, universities, teacher training, research institutions and the economy. Their first session took place on November 26, 2018.

The enquiry committee examines where and how vocational training needs to be adapted to the needs of the digital workplace, and to what extent the system's strengths can be developed and possible entry barriers reduced. Particular attention is paid to securing the need for skilled labour, low-threshold and non-discriminatory access to education and training opportunities, and tasks such as nursing, education and care activities.

A final report will be submitted by the enquiry committee by mid-2021. The topics to be studied include expanding existing strengths and reducing potential obstacles of the German VET system. Special attention is also given in strategy development to strengthening the equivalence of vocational and academic education.

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