The European construction sector is a prime driver of economic growth and employment in every Member State of the European Union (EU). It can respond to a number of economic and societal challenges, such as jobs, growth, digitalisation, environment, energy and climate change challenges.
However, construction companies are facing increasing difficulties in attracting the right workers with the right skills, in particular as regards digital and green skills.
This can be explained by rapid technological changes, including the digitalisation of construction processes through BIM (Building Information Modelling) and other digital tools or methods (automation, drones, Internet of Things, etc.), by policy choices, such as "greener” economies and initiatives on energy efficiency in buildings, as well as by demographic changes, notably the ageing of the workforce. In addition, the industry is also confronted by a significant gender gap, with overall only a very small share of women in the workforce. The latter, combined with the lack of attractiveness of the construction industry for many youngsters puts further pressure, particularly on micro- to medium-sized companies.
Although initiatives aimed at addressing the problem of skills gaps and skills mismatches have been launched at all levels, there was nevertheless a strong need for a more wide-ranging and coordinated approach with a specific action plan. For these reasons the "Blueprint” project, co-financed by the Erasmus+ programme, was launched.
Under the coordination of the Spanish Fundación Laboral de la Construcción, a consortium comprised of 24 partners from 12 EU countries is now working together to develop a new sectorial strategic approach for skills in the construction sector.
The aim of this initiative is to develop and implement a new strategic and coordinated approach ("Blueprint”) to sectoral cooperation on skills, by enhancing the responsiveness of vocational education and training (VET) systems, at all levels, to the construction labour market needs. In other words, it aims at identifying existing and emerging skills needs in order to translate them into vocational curricula responding to those needs.
This project is of high importance, as it will participate in making the construction sector fit for the green and digital transitions strongly promoted by the European Union.
- Erasmus+ - Sector Skills Alliances
- (European Commission)