One of the primary goals of education is to prepare youth for the labor market. This task is infinitely difficult because economies are constantly changing. What will the global labor market look like in 30 years and how will it impact specific countries? It’s impossible to know for sure, which therefore makes deciding which skills to teach inside national school systems difficult to pinpoint. It’s a major public policy question facing many governments.
But there are some skills that employers want right now that they feel schools are not teaching. Plus, with the labor movement in decline worldwide, jobs have become precarious for many people. This reality requires laborers to have the grit and tenacity to be flexible in their job choices as economies change. Can schools teach these soft-skills to students?
My guests today have recently co-edited a book that dives into the subject, looking at the skills deemed necessary by employers but lacking in students. The book is entitled “Bridging the Skills Gap: Innovations in Africa and Asia, which was published by Springer earlier this year.
With me today are two of the co-editors, Wambui Munge and Shubha Jayaram. Wambui is a Communications Officer at Results For Development where Shubha is a Senior Program Officer.
Citation: Munge, Wambui & Jayaram, Shubha, interview with Will Brehm, FreshEd, 67, podcast audio, April 3, 2017. https://freshedpodcast.com/mungejayaram/