The Skills Summit 2016

offered a timely opportunity for Ministers to discuss how they can work together across their various portfolios to deliver better skills outcomes for their countries and boost productivity, innovation and social inclusion.

This unique international meeting convened 26 Ministers representing 15 countries and the European Commission with responsibility for a range of skills-relevant portfolios, including education, employment, economic development, regional policy and government co-ordination. Representatives from the OECD’s institutional partners: the Business and Industry Advisory Committee (BIAC) and the Trade Union Advisory Committee (TUAC) also attended.

Drawing on this wide range of perspectives, and key insights from the OECD's work with 10 countries on building effective national skills strategies, The Skills Summit 2016 provided Ministers with an opportunity to discuss the benefits and challenges of building effective whole-of-government and whole-of-society skills strategies. The Skills Summit was conducted as a ministerial “retreat” to foster free and frank exchange of ideas, the highlights of which are published in the Chair’s Summary available in the documentation section of this website.

Ministers welcomed the Skills Summit as a valuable opportunity for policy dialogue, provided by the Norwegian Government and the OECD, and looked forward to strengthening international cooperation to identify the key success factors for developing national skills strategies to drive productivity, innovation and inclusion.

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Erna Solberg

Prime Minister of Norway
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Ángel Gurría

Secretary General
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
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Torbjørn Røe Isaksen

Minister of Education and Research of Norway

The Challenge

Skills are central to countries’ ability to respond to the economic and social challenges of today and tomorrow. Countries are grappling with a number of complex and interrelated challenges that have important implications for productivity, innovation and social inclusion. Meeting these multifaceted challenges requires a renewed focus on skills and human capital. Yet many countries are failing to realise the full benefits of their investments. Maximising the impact of skills investments requires that all relevant actors work together to develop and implement coherent policies that support the: 1) Development of relevant skills; 2) Activation of skills in the labour market; and 3) Putting skills to effective use in workplaces and society.

Objective

The Skills Summit will convene ministers with responsibility for a range of skills-relevant portfolios, including education, employment, economic development, innovation, regional and industrial policy and government co-ordination. The Summit will foster open discussion about countries’ economic and social aspirations for 2025 and how an effective, forward-looking, whole-of-government approach to skills can help achieve these aims. Ministers will have an opportunity to discuss how they can work together across their various portfolios to deliver better skills outcomes for their countries, to share good practice, and to build the road ahead to 2025 and beyond.

Participation

The Prime Minister of Norway, the Minister of Education and Research of Norway and the OECD Secretary- General are extending an invitation to ministers from OECD Member countries as well as to OECD accession and key partner countries. Each minister may be accompanied by two advisor, as an observesr.

Format

Moderated plenary and break-out sessions will be used to permit ministers to have substantive discussions about their challenges and successes with respect to building effective whole-of-government and whole-of-society approaches to skills policies. Chatham House rules will be in effect to ensure open and frank communication.

The main highlights of the discussions will be published in the form of a Chair’s Summary.

Where and when

The Summit will be held in Bergen, Norway on 29-30 June 2016 at the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel in the historic district of Bryggen, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Please register before 28 April.