A shortfall in workers with information and communication technology skills could keep Europe from enjoying the economic and social benefits of trends such as big data and cloud computing.
The European Commission's Andrus Ansip described Europe's current state of affairs as alarming in a recent speech in Belgium. He said the rapid growth of the technology sector has led to the creation of 120,000 new jobs a year. However, Ansip noted Europe could face a shortfall of more than 800,000 skilled technology workers by 2020. "We still see big differences in skills levels between [European Union] countries, and different implementation of national skill programs designed to minimize Europe's digital divide," he said.
Ansip also predicted the market for global big data technology and services should grow from 3 billion euros in 2010 to 16 billion euros in 2015, seven times faster than the overall IT market. "To me, that is the kind of rapid growth that means hundreds of thousands of new jobs across Europe in the coming years," he said.
The U.K. government is looking to address the problem by introducing a revamped computing curriculum. Some observers believe reinstating visas for foreign workers with relevant skills would be a better approach over the short term.
From V3.co.uk (United Kingdom)
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