Social media is becoming an increasingly important career tool for young people, and Europe needs to do a better job of providing them with the skills to use them effectively. This was the announcement at the event “Youth and Social Media: Changing the World of Jobs and Skills” organized by POLITICO on January 26, 2016, presented by Tata Consultancy Services (TCS).
The debate came amid growing recognition of the potential of digital expertise to reduce the stubbornly high unemployment rate in the EU of 9 percent. European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport Tibar Navracic said that this year the European Commission will focus on its new skills program. However, Navrachik added, only a third of EU schools have enough digital equipment.
“Digital skills will be at the heart of our skills program,” he said. “They are vital in an economy that is becoming increasingly digital. Part of the answer is to help teachers become competent in digital technology and connect our schools. We need to make the whole structure of the education system more flexible. “
We need to make the whole structure of the education system more flexible. ” Tybar Navrasic, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sports.
Until recently, social networks were seen as a tool that young people use for personal purposes, such as keeping in touch with friends and sharing experiences. But a new study by Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) presented at the event shows that this is a myth. Instead, social networks are empowering young Europeans in their academic and professional lives.
The largest study of its kind, it analyzed the opinions of more than 5,000 young people in 15 EU countries and singled out social media as a catalyst for transformation across the continent. Social media helps the younger generation to a greater level of participation, activity and participation in all spheres of their lives – personal, professional and political. According to the survey, 45% of young Europeans who use social networks used them to find work. At work, social networks encourage collaboration and learning, with 60 percent of respondents using them to improve their skills and experience through textbooks.
Such a contribution should be welcomed by European employers, who often point to a lack of skills and recruitment, especially in technical fields.
Demand for digital skills is expected to grow.
It is expected that in 10 years in Belgium 90 percent of jobs will have a digital dimension, said Alexander De Crewe, Deputy Prime Minister of Belgium and Minister for Digital Affairs in the federal government.
Do you accept technology or are you afraid of technology? It is important to look ahead – a Europe that is not lost in technology, but sees its benefits. Alexander De Crewe, Minister for Cooperation in Development, Digital Agenda, Telecommunications and Postal Services of the Belgian Federal Government
Unfortunately, De Crewe said, in Europe too much attention is focused on the negative aspects of digital technology, such as the dominance of big data by some American players. “Instead of talking about breaking up big platforms, we need to talk about why we don’t get big platforms,” he said. “Do you use technology or are you afraid of technology? It is important to look ahead – a Europe that is not lost in technology, but sees its benefits.
Education is slowly grasping opportunities, and many schools do not yet provide enough courses in programming or digital learning, De Crewe said. “We often say that we need to attract students to the world of business. But the first thing you need to do is bring teachers into the business world. ”
While some universities offer mass openings online courses (MOOC), others follow traditional learning formulas.
“The key word is self-study,” said Fernando M. Galan Palamares, president of the European Students’ Union. “But in most universities, social media is a tool that is not used or blocked.”
This does not mean that social networks should take on all aspects of life and learning. Estonia is one of the most technology-friendly countries in Europe: some of its children are learning coding in primary school; and one of its banks is recruiting only IT graduates.
But untested social networks can be a distraction, and in some cases books and teachers are the most effective sources of knowledge, says Estonian MEP Kaja Kalas, a member of the European Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research and Energy. Too much emphasis on technology can leave people without the other skills needed in 21street“The workplace of the century,” said Callas. “We can’t overlook human skills when talking about digital. We need a balance here. ”
The key to successful navigation on social media is self-discipline, said Philip Weiss, founder, chairman and chief hyper-thinker of the Brussels-based digital communications agency ZN Consulting. “It’s about using tools so they don’t end up using you,” he said. “I wouldn’t try to ban social networks, but I would try to get young people to use them wisely.”
It’s about using tools so they don’t end up using you. I would not try to ban social networks, but I would try to force young people to use them wisely. ” Philip Weiss, founder, chairman and chief hyper-thinker of ZN Consulting
Weiss added that people who develop an attractive online presence can gain a competitive advantage in the job market as most companies check a candidate’s profile on LinkedIn, Facebook and elsewhere. It is also important to remember that everything that is posted on social media is actually public, he said.
All this suggests that young people should learn to make better use of social networks, not that some forums should be banned for children. “Lawmakers have been looking at it since the 20sgo-the prospect of a century of “poor, innocent children,” Weiss said. “We need to educate, not protect.”