Webinar Series on dual Vocational Education and Training

Initial vocational education and training
The mission of the Donor Committee for dual Vocational Education and Training (DC dVET) is to make even better use of the member’s expertise in this area for the benefit of development cooperation. The committee recently hosted a series of webinars with experts in the field focusing on key questions in dual VET. Swisscontact hosts the DC dVET secretariat.

Dual Vocational Education and Training (dVET) has been an integral part of the education system in Austria, Germany, Liechtenstein and Switzerland for many years. The four countries also introduce elements of dual VET into their development cooperation in order to contribute to improving social and economic development. Harnessing their institutional expertise and longstanding experience, the four countries founded a committee. To orchestrate the donor committee’s activities, they have set up a secretariat, which is managed by Swisscontact (Lead), INBAS GmbH, KEK-CDC Consultants and L&R Social Research.

The donor committee focuses its work on networking and provides thematic support for programmes of its member organisations and partners. Recently, the DC dVET conducted a series of webinars about key questions within dVET. Recordings of the webinars are available to view here. Hereafter, we provide a summary of their contents:

Key Elements of Dual VET in International Development Cooperation

In April, DC dVET held the first of a series of webinars about key elements of dual VET in development cooperation. The presenter Franz Kehl is an expert member of the DC dVET secretariat and managing director of KEK CDC Consultants. He explained the core of dual VET to around 50 participants, including DC dVET members and implementing agencies.

Financing of (dual) VET

VET financing has a high influence on VET efficiency and effectiveness. Dr Gunnar Specht, PLANCO Consulting GmbH, explained why VET is more expensive than other forms of training and illustrated the ways that businesses could participate in VET financing. He shared some fund allocation models that show how the training costs can be funded and made more sustainable. 

Cost-Benefit Analyses for Companies in (dual) VET

For companies, common reasoning for not taking on apprentices is often a lack of time and resources available to train them. However, companies often find that the benefit of a trained apprentice outweighs any potential costs when reviewed in a costs and benefits analysis. Prof. Dr. Stefan C. Wolter, University of Bern, discussed the costs and benefits of apprenticeship training and how dual VET influences companies’ hiring and training costs in his presentation.

Methods to Assess the Skills Demand

In another webinar about skills needs anticipation and matching, Alessandra Molz of the International Labour Organization Office for Central and Eastern Europe shared her expertise in skills and employability. To foresee which skills the workforce needs to have in the future (skills anticipation), there are methods to assess labour market developments and skills demand. In other words, dual VET is a means of connecting the skills of employees with the demand from the companies (matching). Alessandra Molz explained the commonly used methods for anticipating skills needs and how to find the right mixture of methodologies.

Companies Engaging in Dual VET: Do Financial Incentives Matter? 

In dual VET, companies offering apprenticeships often bear a substantial part of the training costs. In this webinar, Kurt Schmid of ibw Austria - Research & Development in VET, looked at whether and how financial incentives for companies matter in dual VET. He discussed why and to what extent financial subsidies may influence companies’ decision to engage in VET. The webinar reflected on the pros and cons of financial incentives to training companies. The documentation will be available soon on the DC dVET website

Future webinars and further information about dual vocational education and training can also be found at the DC dVET website.

The members of the DC dVET are the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and the Liechtenstein Development Service (LED).