Youth Voice in Poland : The 27th Economic Forum

Poland panel

Last month we were invited to take part in a debate in Poland, with the chance to share a stage with other experts from across Europe we offered the opportunity to one of our volunteer ambassador's Sagar to attend alongside Neil Burke, Youth Ambassador and Engagement Manager. Neil shares his thoughts and learnings from the event below:

From the 5th - 7th September I had the privilege to attend and be part of a debate panel at the 27th Economic Forum in Krynica Zdrój, Poland. The Forum brought a host of leaders of political and economic life from around the world together to debate in a dozen thematic paths, such as: macroeconomics, energy, business and management, new economy, health or international security.

Supported by Youth Ambassador, Sagar Haria Youth Employment UK sat on a panel to discuss ‘The labour market of the future - youth or experience?’ with Filippo Taddei, Director of the Bologna Institute for Policy Research, Johns Hopkins University, Elizabeth Krahulecz, Head of Regulatory Public Policy Brussels Office, Ernst & Young Brussels, Catarina Tavares, International Secretary, General Union of Workers - UGT, Portugal, Stanislaw Bisztyga, Vice-President of the Board, Malopolska Regional Development Agency, Poland. The discussion was opened up with a presentation which was given by Irina Novikova, Associate Professor of the Department of Economic Theory and Public Administration, Amur State University, Russia.

The discussion was very interesting with panelists highlighting the impact which technology is having on the labour market. Two main presented were employees having to be competent in using technology and how technology is taking the place of humans within the labour market which are both evident within the UK economy. Our presentation highlighted the challenges young people face in entering the labour market and how some services not meeting their needs. This led to discussions on how young people, often through no fault of their own are not deemed 'work ready' by employers. The panel and audience were in agreement with our main points which aligned with what is also going on and needed across Europe.

Across the three days we also had the opportunity to attend a vast range of different debates which featured some of Poland's leading politicians such as the Secretary of State for Education and the Minister of Education.

There were some really interesting discussions on the role of employers within education, Europe’s priorities in education, Brexit and how it will affect the European financial market and the development of education in Europe. As we found within our panel discussion, many of the challenges and needs within Poland and Europe match those of the UK.

Many of the current issues we face in the UK were highlighted throughout sessions from different organisations across Europe and further afield particularly surrounding young people being armed with the right skills for work. The need to educate and engage with parents to support them to understand that vocational routes can lead to a successful career were also raised.

Upon review, the visit was a very worthwhile experience and it was very interesting to see that the main youth employment challenges which are facing us here in the UK are also challenges for Europe.We would like to thank the organisers of the Economic Forum and we will look o further our working relationship with the Economic Forum and support their future events.

"It was an interesting panel discussion to be a part of, it was fascinating to hear about the youth labour market from different points of view and form an international perspective.

I would like to thank Youth Employment UK and the Economic Forum for giving me the opportunity to go to Poland and talk about the subject on an international scale".

Sagar Haria : Youth Ambassador

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