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3 August 2015: Plenary Session II

Which Skills for Existing and Emerging Jobs?

Date: 3 August 2015

Time: 12:00 -13:00



  • To overview trends, challenges and opportunities for skills development, particularly in light of changes in job structures and characteristics;
  • To discuss among different stakeholders and identify gaps in current skills development to meet emerging needs for changing jobs;
  • To present promising policies and practices that facilitate innovative skills development; and
  • To outline concrete strategies and priority action areas to address identified issues and challenges.


Key questions:

  • From your perspective, what are the types of skills learners need to acquire for today’s and tomorrow’s jobs?
  • What are the measures that your project/programme/country has taken to develop innovation capacity for addressing the job paradox (e.g. high youth unemployment while shortages in high- and middle-skilled workers)?
  • Can you identify any trends in skills development in your country/the Asia-Pacific region?
  • What are the key policy and implementation bottlenecks you would like to see addressed and how?
  • Painting a big picture of success in developing skill sets for innovation in the region, what should be the priority action areas and who should be involved? 


FacilitatorMr. Anshul Sonak, Intel


  • Mr. Sam Haggag, Manpower Group
  • Ms. Ishita Joshi, Ministry of Skills Development and Entrepreneurship, India
  • Ms. Prapai Numthavaj, Petroleum Institute of Thailand



The nature of work and the workforce is changing rapidly in today’s technology and innovation-driven world. Skills needs are therefore also evolving and putting pressure on TVET systems to respond adequately by providing well-prepared graduates. In addition, governments and societies are at a crossroad in deciding how to address the following global paradox: youth make up 40 percent of the world’s unemployed, while industries expect a global shortage of 85million high- and middle-skilled workers (McKinsey, 2012). Hence, job readiness through innovative skills development is vital for reducing unemployment, poverty, and inequality, as well as for growth promotion. However, there are inefficiencies in skills acquisition and skills usage by entire TVET ecosystems and more so among the 15-24-year-old cohort. Hence governments are looking at new innovative models to integrate education and employability into TVET systems.

The session will discuss some evidence and give new insights into skills needs, working models and best practices in the region that are being used to address the global paradox. The panel discussion will bring together voices from three different stakeholders, including a skills tracking organization, the Government of India, and a representative of the petroleum sector in Thailand. All three will give their insights into current and future skills development needs and propose action areas to ensure learners can acquire relevant skills for existing and future jobs. 

With Asian countries surging ahead towards developing knowledge economies and catering to wider international markets, employers’ talent needs are also evolving fast. Mr. Haggag will present key findings from the 2014 Talent Shortage Survey, elaborate on skill sets employers are looking for and consider strategies they deploy to address skills gaps in this region.

India is striving to leverage its comparatively young population for its economic growth. The current formal skills development system, however, is not able to match industry demand. Ms. Joshi will give an insight into skill shortages in India and elaborate on strategies for talent development that the Indian Government is currently developing to address these circumstances.

Meeting industry needs requires new thinking in developing innovative skill development models. Ms. Numthavaj will discuss skill sets needed by the petroleum sector in Thailand and explain how the sector jointly addresses existing skill gaps. He will identify existing challenges for skills development and propose action areas for country.


Mc Kinsey Global Institute. 2012. The world at work: Jobs, pay, and skills for 3.5 billion people.