Boosting attractiveness and relevance of VET in Azerbaijan
Increasing the attractiveness and relevance of vocational education and training (VET) for Azerbaijan has been identified as a priority in the European Training Foundation’s assessment of the country’s human capital development policies.
Carried out as part of the Torino Process – a periodic appraisal of the state of development of each country’s skills development and labour market systems – the ETF assessment recommends, amongst other things, involving employers more in developing VET policy, standards and curricula, enhancing the conditions and status of vocational teachers, improving career guidance, and expanding adult education. In line with the recommendations for other countries, the report stresses the importance of having reliable data and using it to inform the policy cycle.
Azerbaijan’s employers regularly report that a shortage of skilled staff hinders business growth. The government is seeking to leverage skills development as a means of diversifying the economy away from over-reliance on the oil and gas sector and enhancing economic resilience. Yet Azerbaijan has the lowest participation in VET of the Eastern Partnership (14.5% in 2018, compared to 30% in Ukraine and 40% in Moldova and Belarus), and 37% of young workers are in jobs not matching their qualifications. Boosting enrolment in VET is therefore a priority for Azerbaijan, as well as for EU support to the country. The EU is investing €13.5 million in vocational education and training through the Education for Employment programme, designed and implemented with support from the ETF.
Published following an extensive process of data collection and consultation with a wide range of stakeholders in the country, the report provides an external, forward-looking analysis of Azerbaijan’s human capital issues and vocational education and training policies from a lifelong learning perspective. It identifies challenges related to education and training policy and practices that hinder the development and use of human capital. It takes stock of these challenges and offers recommendations for possible solutions.
The ETF’s assessment of Azerbaijan will be discussed, together with those of the other Eastern Partnership countries, at a regional event to he held online on 16 and 17 September 2020.