Bangalore, India – February 4, 2014:Infosys, a global leader in consulting, technology and outsourcing, and Bertelsmann Stiftung, a German think tank promoting development for a sustainable society, will jointly host a conference “How to tackle the skills mismatch in India?” The conference will be held in Bangalore on February 6 and 7, 2014 and will discuss ways of improving vocational education and strategies on how the private sector can effectively contribute to skill development in India. The conference is expected to attract 80 participants from various fields including Ms. Liz Mohn, Vice-Chair of Bertelsmann Foundation and Mr. N. R. Narayana Murthy, Founder and Executive Chairman of Infosys. His Excellency Joachim Gauck, Federal President of Germany, who is on his first visit to India, will address the conference on February 7.
While India’s young population is its greatest asset, many young Indians lack the skillsets required for effective employment. This skills mismatch poses a tremendous challenge for India’s growing economy. To address this challenge, the Indian government has launched several initiatives to skill and up-skill about 500 million people by 2022. Vocational education is increasingly gaining importance in enabling career development and employment across the world, and is another channel to address the growing skill gap in India.
Infosys and Bertelsmann Stiftung have developed this two-day conference by leveraging their vast experience in people and skill development. This conference will deliberate on the role that vocational education can play in helping bridge the skills gap in India.
The conference will bring together prominent leaders from politics, industry and civil society to discuss, ideate and develop alternative approaches towards this endeavor. The conference also aims at initiating conversations between like-minded corporates on ways to improve the qualifications of employees through vocational education and encouraging cooperation between companies and public authorities. India’s Institute of Applied Manpower and Bertelsmann Stiftung will present a joint study which shows that elements of Germany’s “dual system” of vocational education, a combination of classroom-learning and on-the-job training, holds valuable lessons for India.
Mr. N. R. Narayana Murthy, Executive Chairman of the Board, Infosys said, “We have always encouraged a culture of learning and knowledge sharing at Infosys to help build a brighter tomorrow. It is an honor to be associated with Bertelsmann Stiftung. We look forward to learning from the collective experience to generate the right ideas that will help India address the challenges of skills mismatch. I feel it is imperative for companies, academia and governments to collaborate to improve skill sets of the employable population, which will in turn help foster economic growth across the world.”
Ms. Liz Mohn, Vice-Chair, Bertelsmann Stiftung said, “This conference aims at building bridges between Germany and India and contributing to sustainable development. In a globalized world, major social challenges can only be tackled by cooperating across borders and cultures.”
Bertelsmann Stiftung, one of Europe’s largest operating foundations, has engaged intensively in projects on vocational education, training and employability.
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About Bertelsmann Stiftung
The Bertelsmann Stiftung was founded in 1977 and is one of the largest private foundations in Germany. It designs and implements its own projects dedicated to serving the common good in areas such as education, economy, health and culture. The foundation has been working on issues of vocational education and training and employability for a long time. With its projects in this area, the foundation aims at contributing to the political debate by providing studies, analysis and recommendations on necessary reforms. The new Program Germany and Asia of Bertelsmann Stiftung fosters cooperation, dialogue and exchange between Asia and Europe in the working areas of the foundation.