20 Oct 2020

Using artificial intelligence to predict the jobs of the future

  • By 2025, Member States, universities and business should be training specialists for the most in-demand jobs, including: data analysis scientists; AI and machine learning specialists; big data specialists; and digital transformation managers.
  • By 2025, enterprises in Europe should be providing ICT training to 70 per cent of their employees. Today, only 23,9 per cent of all European enterprises do so.

Good policymaking requires a solid base of evidence and well-developed predictions to inform and guide policy decisions and implementation. Foresight can help improve education and training systems, solve current educational challenges, offer projections of the future trends in employment and analyse the current and future population’s skills base.

To begin with, this means mapping out vital skills needs at different levels and for different roles. This mapping should be conducted on a regional basis, to ensure a useful level of detail. Based on this wealth of evidence, we can then define what technology investments and large-scale training facilities are needed to provide those skills across a number of sectors, in both cities and rural areas.

We therefore recommend that the Commission coordinates an AI-powered skills forecasting project covering all Member States. This would look at potential job disruption and the future job markets and be based on methodologies already in place. The method and algorithms can be adapted to each country and sector to take into account different circumstances.

DIGITALEUROPE member AGORIA, the Belgian association, have already launched such a project at national level. Their analysis of the Belgian job market predicts that equipping people with the right skills can lead to 268,000 vacancies being filled by 2030. 

The project, called “Be The Change”, is assessing the impact of digitalisation both in terms of the number of emerging and disappearing jobs and of the evolving skillsets people need to navigate an evolving labour market. The algorithmic model behind the analysis allows to predict the impact of policy and social measures on the shape of Belgian labour market. 

More than 80 companies have already signed up to the “Be The Change” charter, pledging to adapt the management of their human resources to the challenges of tomorrow’s labour market. 

In addition to the study and the pledge, “Be The Change” offers the DigiSkills Passport, a tool providing every individual with insights on the digital skills and the training pathway linked to their unique needs and ambitions.

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