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The call for proposals ‘DIGITAL-2023-SKILLS-05: Advanced Digital Skills’ under the Digital Europe Programme, including the topic of Advanced digital skills analysis (DIGITAL-2023-SKILLS-05-SPECIAL-PROGEDU) is now published on the Funding and Tenders portal. The call will be open for applications from 21 November 2023 until 21 March 2024.

Background 

This call entails a coordination and support action, which aims at providing an analysis of advanced digital skills needs. It will recommend priority areas for upcoming funding programmes in the area of advanced digital skills and will provide best practice examples for designing and implementing education programmes and training in this area. This topic will further support networking opportunities among the different consortia awarded from the different call topics of the Digital Europe Programme – Strategic Objective 4 (Advanced Digital Skills), building a brand of excellence. 

Scope

The proposed project is required to include the following activities:

  • Based on the work carried out by the prior DIGITAL-SO4 action LEADS28, as well as based on existing literature and mapping exercises, collect information on the advanced digital skills needed by companies and the public sector related to different advanced digital technologies (e.g. AI) and to specific sectors (e.g. health). These analyses should be performed on a yearly basis and should result in recommendations, mainly with regard to which key digital areas and which specific sectors should be prioritised in upcoming future work programmes of the Digital Europe Programme (in collaboration with the European Commission). 
  • Based on desk research, detailed analyses of the outputs of all DIGITALSO4 actions as well as based on consulting consortium members of the DIGITAL-SO4 funded actions (e.g. by running focus groups, structured interviews or surveys), regularly provide insights, explore lessons learned and propose best practices.
  • Conduct surveys with consortia implementing DIGITAL-SO4 actions to find out which additional support requests consortia would need most. Deploy and carry out the most relevant support measures. Provide suggestions on what activities could be further implemented to create an ecosystem between higher education institutions and research and industry partners (especially SMEs and start-ups).
  • Foster coordination between the different consortia of DIGITAL-SO4 actions (e.g. by supporting the Commission in organising regular yearly meetings with consortia implementing DIGITAL-SO4 actions, by creating databases with names, contact details and area of expertise of experts from different consortia in order to facilitate their exchange and collaboration; organise additional meetings and structures to facilitate exchange between the different consortia, etc.).
  • Conduct awareness-raising campaigns for the educational programmes and trainings of DIGITAL-SO4 calls and their related activities. This includes also contributing to the upcoming dedicated webpage on the Digital Skills and Jobs platform and building a brand of excellence.
  • Support the actions to strengthen the dialogue between consortia implementing DIGITAL-SO4 actions and relevant other stakeholders from their targeted field. Map relevant stakeholders, initiatives, activities, funded projects and so forth in the actions targeting digital areas and specific sectors at EU and national level. Map additional (co-)funding opportunities for actions.
  • Provide a detailed analysis of data collected from the DIGITAL-SO4 actions via a questionnaire which is part of the actions’ mandatory periodic reporting to the Commission on different performance indicators. Conduct an additional representative survey with students and learners from the DIGITAL-SO4 actions and from similar programmes to gather representative and comparable data.

Outcomes and deliverables

The proposal selected for funding will be required to demonstrate the following outcomes and deliverables:

  • That information based on the desk research and surveys of the DIGITAL-SO4 consortia on the skills needs, sectoral needs and existing education programmes and training gaps in the area of advanced digital skills have been collected, analysed and have been published.
  • That recommendations regarding priority digital areas and specific sectors for the upcoming future funding work programmes of the Digital Europe Programme in the area of advanced digital skills are put forward to the European Commission on a yearly basis.
  • That analyses of the awarded actions under DIGITAL-SO4 calls have been completed and published, highlighting good examples and formulating suggestions on how to further encourage the development of excellent education programmes and training in digital areas and specific sectors.
  • That support has been provided to the different consortia and its members awarded in the context of DIGITAL-SO4 calls, with a view of maximising exchanges and scaling up successful activities.
  • That the promotion and dissemination activities related to the education and training opportunities available as a result of DIGITAL-SO4 actions have been carried out.
  • That analyses and the survey related to Digital Europe Programme indicators have been carried out and published.

Targeted stakeholders

The consortium should demonstrate a good expertise in the design and deployment of analyses, surveys and evaluation actions related to advanced digital technologies and digital skills, as well as supporting and coordination actions for ecosystems and networks in this field.

Moreover, the consortium should demonstrate knowledge and expertise in terms of the state of play and needs of educational and training institutions and companies (especially SMEs) related to the research, development and application of advanced digital technologies and digital skills.

The consortium should be composed of a minimum of 4 applicants (beneficiaries; not affiliated entities) from 4 different eligible countries.

Type of action 

CSA — 100% funding rate.