HundrED Research publishes Technical and Vocational Educational Training Report in collaboration with the Technology Industries of Finland

21.3.2019 | BY KATIJA ALADIN

HundrED is proud to announce the launch of the Technical and Vocational Educational Training Report in collaboration with the Technology Industry of Finland and the strategy network of Finnish Vocational Institutes.  

Technical and Vocational Training (TVET) has become increasingly important for the education communities worldwide because of the growing demand for skills-based learning and 21st-century skills.  HundrED is committed to sharing ideas and innovations that meet the needs of students today and ensure that they are well-equipped for success in the future.  This report is a call to action for change in education to highlight the opportunities and advantages of TVET. 

“If we do not believe current education around the world prepares our children adequately, we need to both outline and continue to understand what we need to do to improve education to enable this to happen.” (Spencer-Keyse & Warren, 2018, p.27).  

We caught up with Leena Pöntynen, Director of Education at the Technology Industries of Finland and Frederika Warren, our lead researcher on the project to highlight the importance of the report and why we need to focus on making changes today for future workplaces.  


What is TVET?

Technical and Vocational Education & Training (TVET) comprises training and skills development relating to a wide range of occupational fields, production, services and livelihoods.  TVET is often seen as inferior in conversations around educational pathways with increasing the attractiveness of TVET currently a global goal. Despite Finland generally having higher notions of TVET than its European counterparts, it is often still seen as inferior compared to general education. This is despite TVET offering students a wide range of opportunities to enhance and develop their skills to meet the needs of an uncertain future job market.


What are the biggest gaps and therefore opportunities in TVET that the world of education needs to recognize?

As a response, Leena Pöntynen, Director of Education shared that "The companies of Finnish Technology Industry need more than 53 000 employees in the next four years. 40 % of them need to have TVET education. The companies have now difficulties to find a workforce that is skillful, competent and excited about their work. it is even affecting negatively to companies´ profits.

We need to ensure the youth that with vocational training you can and you will have a good career, a good life. There are so many interesting jobs in the technology industries where you can not only earn your living, but also, for example, create all kinds of new innovations, improve sustainable development, and make people's lives easier.

We need to tell young people about their options in the industry. Show them real-life examples of both vocational training institutes but also about the factories. They are not all greasy, dark sweatshops but modern, super-cool places where they make pieces or gadgets that solve our everyday problems."


Was there anything unusual that has come out of this report?

"It was interesting to find that in our survey, 82.4 percent of employers recognized a shortage of skills in students, with 40 percent of employers unsure as to whether VET institution training was meeting the requirements of the workplace. The notion of a skills mismatch has been consistently noted throughout the research literature and is clearly a key barrier that needs to be addressed", as reported by HundrED's Lead Researcher for the project, Frederika Warren.


Where do we look for inspiration and guidance when enquiring for global innovations in TVET? 

For this report, HundrED explored their innovation database and beyond to recommend three selected innovations that are to be piloted in Finland, in a concerted effort to address the barriers found in this report. These innovations include

Other special mentions include

Ammatit tutuksi yläkoululaisille (Finland)

Edge Future Learning (UK)

ForeAmmatti (Finland)

leerKRACHT (Netherlands)

Mobile Outreach Training (Zimbabwe)

Teach the Teacher (Australia)

The Careers and Enterprise Company (UK)

A better understanding of vocational work will arguably not only lead to more employment opportunities for students entering the workplace but will also help companies hire enthusiastic and competent employees which will positively impact their business and profits. Issues pertaining to misconceptions about TVET as well as recommendations to provide guidance on possible solutions to the barriers are addressed in the research report.


Grab your copy of the English version of the report here and explore the innovations on the Spotlight page for TVET.  You can also find the Finnish version by clicking here.

Every Child to Flourish: Understanding Global Perspectives on Improving Education and further insights from our state of the debate review & global youth survey can be found for free on HundrED Research.