This e-discussion is one of a series of four thematic e-discussions of the Education Global Thematic Consultation on the World We Want platform. The UN jointly with civil society is gathering views from people around the world and building a collective vision on priorities for a Post-2015 framework. Opinions gathered will inform the UN and world leaders to plan a new development agenda. Each of the education e-discussions will run for 2 weeks and we want to ensure as broad and diverse consultation as possible.
To kick off the discussion on Global Citizenship, Jobs and Skills, we invite you to reflect on the following.
Education for Jobs and Skills
At the most basic level, education is an important requirement to enter the job market. Over the last ten years, the number of 15- to 24-year-olds in the Arab States, South and West Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa has increased from 474 million to 566 million. By 2020, it will reach 623 million. An additional 57 million jobs will need to be created for new entrants to the labor market to prevent unemployment rates from rising above current levels. Young women are equally if not more adversely impacted. Girls of lower secondary school age are more likely to be out of school than boys, regardless of factors such as wealth and household location[i].
Provision of basic literacy and numeracy skills, which are essential to learning further skills for work, equal access to quality primary and secondary education and vocational and skills training that match job market opportunities are critical for young people in urban and rural areas especially in low income countries. These trigger getting out of poverty, coping with climate change, food insecurity, migration and other issues. It helps young people to find new ways in which to respond to the impacts of the different types of crises and prevent new ones from occurring. It makes their entry to the labor market easier for better job opportunities.
Global Citizenship and Education
The world faces global challenges, which require global solutions. Globalization has increased the interdependence, connectivity, and integration on a global level, with respect to the social, cultural, political, technological, economic, and environmental areas. Global citizenship is an umbrella term for the social, political, environmental, or economic actions of globally-minded individuals and communities on a worldwide scale that shape the future of the planet.
It is not enough for education to produce individuals who can read, write and count. Education for global citizenship empowers people and especially youth around the world by providing them with the necessary knowledge and skills and by raising their awareness, thus equipping them with the tools needed to become responsible global citizens who can take joint actions. Education must be transformative and bring shared values to life. Technological solutions, political regulation or financial instruments alone cannot achieve sustainable development. It requires transforming the way people think and act. Education must fully assume its central role in helping people to forge more just, peaceful, tolerant and inclusive societies. In practice, education for global citizenship is quality and relevant education through a holistic approach, involving every stakeholder. Equipping young people with knowledge and skills to navigate the fundamental transition from childhood to adolescence, be it through information on healthy life-styles, through comprehensive sexuality education or by fostering positive gender norms, values and behaviors, fits into this vision.
During the first week we would like you to discuss the followings:
1. What kind of policies, strategies or interventions have been most successful in your country or region in (a) imparting relevant and adequate skills development (b) providing education for global citizenship; and (c) addressing interconnection between the two?
2. What are the key problems and challenges in your country or region caused due to (a) lack of skills training for young men and women; and (b) inadequate learning for global citizenship?
3. What kind of learning is required for global citizenship and for preparing children and youth to participate meaningfully in local and global economy, as well as democracy and social cohesion?
4. How can technology, especially social networking and mobile devices, be used to improve global citizenship, increase access to information about jobs and support skills development?
We ask that you begin your comment with one (or more) of the following sentences:
1. In my experience, the policies and initiatives developed and implemented in my country to (a) address skills development were and/or to (b) provide education for global citizenship are… (please answer to one or both)
These initiatives and policies have brought the following impact (please be specific)…
2. In my opinion, the challenges and main obstacles in my country or region caused due to (a) lack of skills training for young men and women; and (b) inadequate learning for global citizenship are… (please answer to one or both)
The followings are done or could be done to overcome these obstacles (please list them and be specific in your examples).
3. In my opinion, learning required for global citizenship and for preparing children and youth to participate meaningfully in local and global economy, as well as democracy and social cohesion is as follows…
4. Technology can be used to improve global citizenship, increase access to information about jobs and support skills development in the following ways…
The discussion will take place from 23 January to 6 February. To post your contributions and participate, please click here. We look forward to hearing your views, experiences, ideas, suggestions and recommendations.
With kind regards, the moderators of Discussion Three
Dr. Jean D’Cunha, UN Women
Lily Talapessy, UNFPA
Steve Vosloo and Katerina Ananiadou, UNESCO
Kjersti Mowe, Global Campaign for Education
Will Paxton, Save the Children