Involving social partners in dual VET governance: exploring the contribution of social partners in the design, renewal and implementation of dual VET

The topic of dual vocational education and training (VET) has gained growing relevance in recent years and several European initiatives have aimed to institutionalise dual VET in countries with different VET systems. ‘Dual’ VET (or apprenticeship) combines workplace learning in an enterprise with classroom teaching in an educational institution. This model is considered particularly pertinent in times of high youth unemployment, as it can facilitate smooth transitions to employment or handle the problem of skill mismatches. The most relevant and oldest dual VET systems (Germany, Austria, Denmark) are characterised by a model of cooperative governance in which social partners play a key role at different levels (macro, meso and micro). In contrast, social partners play a limited institutionalised role in policymaking in those countries where VET systems are being recently developed, and the potential of social partners contribution to the design, renewal and implementation of dual VET remains largely unexplored. The main objective of INVOLVE is to analyse and foster social partners´ integration in the governance of dual VET in four countries that are attempting to develop, strengthen or improve dual VET systems (Spain, Greece, Portugal and Poland). Four research institutes (one per country analysed) will focus on investigating how peak level cross-sectoral social partners, sectoral and regional social partners and managers and employees’ representatives at the company level are addressing the challenge of implementing dual VET. Rigorous research methods will be adopted at the national level, namely desk research, qualitative fieldwork and participatory scenario methodology, in order to identify potential scenarios of more integrative governance structures of dual VET on the basis of discussion of project research results with social partners and relevant stakeholders at the national level. Comparative analysis and policy recommendations will be widely disseminated.

European Commission (Brussels, Brussels)
2020-02 to 2022-01
Contract GRANT_NUMBER: VP/2019/004/0015