The B-WISE project started at the beginning of the year and was officially launched with a kick-off meeting among the partners at the end of January!
On January 26th and 27th, all the partners of the B-WISE project gathered for the first time online for the project kick-off meeting. The goal of the meeting was to get to know each other and the partners, to create common ground and a good structure for the partnership and to agree on the work plan and the next steps.
The meeting started with an introduction from Luk Zederloo from EASPD who reminded the importance of strengthening the (digital) skills and competences of the disadvantaged groups to face the digital transition. He was followed by a welcome word from Karel Vanderporten, Marie Bocher and Felix Rohn from the European Commission who highlighted the mission of this project: identifying the skills needs, VET curricula and help the sector in general, with a focus on WISEs target groups, but also the people who are supporting disadvantaged groups. The Commission finally underlined the importance of the B-WISE project for the sector, as it will be at the same time a recognition and a visibility exercise, as the project results will be integrated in the Pact for Skills
The next part of the meeting focused on the description of the work packages and the next steps of the project. The first big activity of the project is led by EURICSE and aims to assess the current situation of skills gaps, including digital skills gaps, in WISEs. It starts with a mapping of activities and characteristics of WISE and an assessment of the current situation of skill needs in WISEs as well as anticipating the future needs. The research will also include a collection of good practices that exist to develop digital skills in the WISEs sector and to deal with the digital skills gaps. The results of this research are expected for the end of 2021.
This first step will be followed by other activities in the framework of the project: building scenarios and personas to identify skills needs; designing VET curricula (occupational profiles, learning outcomes, training curricula for WISEs occupational profiles) meeting the skills gaps; developing a MOOC on Digital Skills for the WISEs sector. To consolidate those first activities, the consortium will work with certification authorities to develop skills recognition mechanisms and to develop a sectoral skills strategy for the WISEs sector. The whole project is a huge opportunity to show the added value of WISEs and promote WISEs as an attractive sector towards workers.
The B-WISE kick-off meeting allowed us to assess the work the partnership will have to do in the next four years to ensure the WISEs sector develops. With the support of 30 partners, 16 members of the Advisory Board as well as of the European Commission, this task seems to be within our reach!