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Education to Employment: The Growing Skill and Job Gaps in Europe

As Europe begins to show some signs of recovery from the crisis, many issues remain including the lack of jobs and economic growth. Youth unemployment, in particular, has become more urgent and is an issue which will be high on Europe's agenda during and after the Greek Presidency. In 2014, young people across Europe will start to benefit from the EU’s Youth Guarantee Scheme.

In most Member States, the proportion of young people not in education, employment or training has increased since 2008, and youth unemployment is over 2 times higher than unemployment in the working age population. In Spain and Greece, more than half of young people who want to work cannot find a job. Despite this, businesses across Europe say they are struggling to find young people with the skills they need. The education to employment system is not serving Europe's youth well, nor its employers. This is the conclusion of the new research from McKinsey & Company, who have surveyed young people, education providers and employers in 8 Member States (France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the UK) which account for around 80% of all youth unemployment in the EU. The survey aims to identify the problems and bottlenecks along the education to employment journey. In addition, McKinsey set out ideas to make the journey for young people smoother, based on research conducted in Europe and beyond of best practice and innovative solutions to help young people get the skills employers need and get into the workplace. This research will be published on 13 January.

Event Materials

McKinseyReport Download

European Commission Report Download

Commissioner Vassiliou's Speech

Presentation by Mona Mourshed Download

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Opening Keynote:

  • Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism, and Youth

Panel discussion:

  • Mona Mourshed, Director, McKinsey & Company
  • Detlef Eckert, Director, DG Employment
  • Xavier Prats Monné, Deputy Director-General for Education and Culture, European Commission
  • Diana Filip, Deputy CEO and Vice President Marketing and Development, JA-YE


  • Karen Wilson, Senior Fellow, Bruegel

Practical information

Venue: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 BrusselsTime: Monday 13 January 2013, 12:00 - 14:00. The meeting will start promptly at 12:00 and run until 13:30. A light lunch will be served until 14:00 to provide time for further discussion and networking. Contact:Matilda Sevón, Events Coordinator - matilda.sevon[at]bruegel.org