Christoph Kannengießer, Chief Executive Officer of the German-African Business Association and Dr. Andreas Werner, Head of iMOVE in the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training (BIBB), opened the event. Kristin Hess also welcomed the participants on behalf of the BMBF and Albert Nsengiyumva, Secretary General of the ADEA, shared introductory words via video.
2nd German-African Forum on Vocational Training and Education
Core message of extending and consolidating private-sector cooperative arrangements
At the 2nd German-African Forum on Vocational Training and Education organised by iMOVE and the German-African Business Association, the German education sector was introduced to around 85 attendees, including three education ministers from Angola, Ghana, and Namibia on 13 October 2022.
At the 2nd German-African Forum on Vocational Training and Education in Frankfurt am Main, the German education sector showcased its innovative education offers in numerous panel discussions, at information stands, and in one-on-one conversations. There were around 85 attendees, including the three education ministers from Angola, Ghana, and Namibia. For the following day, iMOVE organised visits to educational providers in the Rhine-Main area to provide the African partners with some first-hand experience of "Training - Made in Germany".
The event entitled "Digitalisation - Scaling up for today's labour market" focused on digitalisation in the areas of vocational training and continuing education, the demand for training in the emerging hydrogen sector in Africa, and the role of women in education and training. It was also about the benefits of demand-focused, commercial cooperation with the private sector, as well as sustainable projects and initiatives for ensuring successful vocational education and training cooperation with African partners.
Many African countries are now in the process of modernising their vocational training systems and have recognised the relevance of practical vocational education and training to economic development. Many decision-makers regard the German dual system of vocational education and training as a helpful guide and as a frame of reference.
In many places in Africa, however, vocational education and training suffers from a poor image within society as well as from underfunding. Private sector involvement in the organisation of training is very limited and the educational content often does not reflect the needs of companies. The wide-ranging reform efforts being made by African countries therefore also present an opportunity for the German education sector to contribute its expertise to the process.
In their opening addresses, Christoph Kannengießer, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the German-African Business Association (Afrika-Verein der deutschen Wirtschaft), and Dr. Andreas Werner, Head of iMOVE in the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training (BIBB), emphasised the importance of investment in the education sector, the need for private-sector involvement, and the significance of innovative approaches such as hydrogen projects – themes which also played a key role in the panel discussions which followed.
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) was represented by Kristin Hess, who highlighted the ministry's cooperative arrangements in vocational education and training in her address and made reference to the new CooperationVET funding directive. Within the framework of this directive, projects can also be implemented in Africa.
Albert Nsengiyumva, Secretary General of the Association for Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) based in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, concluded the opening speeches via video message.
Birgit Thomann, Head of BIBB's international department, highlighted the activities of the institute which had links to Africa, in particular the new partnership with the Commission for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (CTVET) in Ghana and the joint BILT programme with UNESCO-UNEVOC. The project is focused on new qualifications and competencies and facilitates peer learning and networking between African, Asian, and European UNEVOC centres.
Defining the future of skills development in Africa
The first panel discussion of the Forum was entitled "Defining the future of skills development in Africa". The debate focused on current cooperation projects between German companies and African partners in the education sector. Particular importance was attached to private-sector involvement as a success factor in ensuring sustainable and demand-focussed cooperation in the education sector, in particular in private-public partnerships. Enrico Rühle of Smart Industry Campus chaired the discussion.
Green Hydrogen – Technology and Training Requirements
The day's second panel discussion focused on the theme of vocational training and continuing education in the hydrogen sector. In view of the challenges posed by climate change and the uncertainty surrounding the supply of fossil fuels, there has been a significant global increase in the importance of "green hydrogen". In many African countries, initial activities in this area are already underway. Peter Pfaffe from iMOVE chaired the hydrogen panel.
Birgit Thomann opened the discussion with an ideas talk. In particular, she voiced her support for partnership-based co-innovation between African and German partners. She stressed that while the main focus of both the debate and of current research is on the viability and implementation of hydrogen projects on an industrial scale, it is equally important to focus on demand and on activities for ensuring qualifications in training and continuing education as well as among training personnel. BIBB is currently running a research project funded by BMBF in this area.
Shaping the future of employment
In a panel titled "Shaping the future of employment", panellists discussed how new partnerships can be concluded between African countries and German educational institutions and what can also be learned from existing projects. Katarina Kunert from the German-African Business Association chaired the panel.
Financing skills development in Africa
The final panel examined funding and, in particular, various models and tools used in cooperation between African and German partners. This focused on both the develoPPP programmes of the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ) as well as on solely private-sector cooperation. Katarina Kunert from the German-African Business Association chaired the final panel of the day.
Get-together & Networking
During the lunchtime buffet and at the end of this successful event, all of the guests had time for a get-together & networking in the foyer.
Deutsche Bahn AG, DB Training, Learning & Consulting
Deutsche Bahn AG, DB Training, Learning & Consulting offers training on subjects covering railway operations, infrastructure, drivers, vehicle engineering, and business skills. The institution also has a wide range of vocational training on offer as well as supported continuing vocational education training.
Hessian State Office for Technology Training
The Hessian State Office for Technology Training (Hessische Landesstelle für Technologiefortbildung) provides relevant advanced training for teachers, IT specialists and educational staff at vocational schools.
Internationally, the State Office runs advanced training programmes for specialists and managers in the areas of electrical engineering, information and communications technology, renewable energies and environmental technology, and education management.