Adapting to changing skill needs


Conference: Adapting to Changing Skill Needs                    

 10 July 2017 OECD Conference Centre, Paris‌


In an era of fast changing skill demands, it is increasingly more important to understand and react to possible skills imbalances. The new OECD Skills for Jobs Database provides information about skills shortages, surpluses and mismatch across a wide range of countries. A set of country-specific reports provide evidence on the policies that have been implemented to address existing or anticipated imbalances.


Skills for jobs dataviz

What are the skills most in shortage in your country? What occupations use those skills the most? The OECD Skills for Jobs Indicators provide information about skills shortages and surpluses across countries. Also see what occupations are more in demand in your country. Explore the visualisation by clicking on the banner below:



Skills for jobs: Dataviz


Conference details

‌‌The Conference, hosted by OECD, marked the end of the project on ‘Adapting to Changing Skill Needs’, conducted within the Employment, Labour and Social Affairs Directorate and supported by the JPMorgan Chase Foundation.  This event showcased the main output of the project, the OECD Skills for Jobs Indicators – a cross-country database providing detailed information about the skill needs of the labour markets in all EU countries and South Africa. The event was interactive and centred on the policy relevance and potential use of skill needs indicators to steer the planning and provision of education, lifelong learning and on-the-job training. It also provided an opportunity for the discussion of best practice to address skill shortages and mismatch among key stakeholders.

The event brought together about 100 key stakeholders and practitioners in the area of skills assessment and management. Including, policy makers, employers, unions, training providers and academics. A particularly prominent role was given to the views of those in charge of employment and education policies, employers, recruitment firms, public and private training providers, as well as social partners. Invitations were also sent to over 35 delegations comprising of OECD Member States and close partners, OECD staff working on skills-related issues, and representative of other key international organisations. Participants discussed the relevance of the OECD Skills for Jobs database, present illustrative practices and discuss remaining knowledge gaps to develop a roadmap going forward.

The conference took place at the OECD Conference Centre, Room CC1. 

Conference Agenda

Who's Who: Speakers at the conference

Presentation: OECD Skills for Jobs Database: Fabio Manca - OECD

Presentation: Are robots the answer to skill shortages: Alan Manning  - London School of Economics

Presentation: Can robots and AI help solve skills shortages: Tom M. Mitchell - Carnegie Mellon University 


Aims and objectives:

This event provided a high-level forum for the presentation and discussion of:

(1) How skill needs data can inform policy making and on-the-job training provision;

(2) How to increase the responsiveness of training systems to changing skill needs;

(3) What role for employers in training provision to address skill shortages and tackle skill mismatches; and

(4) Remaining knowledge gaps and further work ahead.

In addition to the above the event created an excellent opportunity for networking and establishing a sustainable network of partner and stakeholder organisations.


Country profiles

These short 2-page country profiles provide a high level overview of skill imbalances. They also show occupational groups based on their similarities providing a picture of how workers can move from jobs in surplus to those in shortage.



Relevant links:



For futher information, please contact the OECD Skills and Employability Division:


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