What are the the skills that Europe needs for the Twin Transition?

Publishing date
22 January 2024
Fabian Stephany
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The European Union’s Twin Transition is accelerating as the demand for AI and green roles grows across Europe. Since 2021, EU countries have witnessed an increase in labour market vacancies by 12% for green jobs and by 20% for AI roles. Across the EU, around 2% of all job vacancies require AI or green skills. Some countries lead the way: more than 4% of all job openings in Denmark ask for green skills, while 11% of all vacancies in Sweden require AI skills. 

The increase in the demand for green and AI roles is happening fast – potentially too quickly for conventional education to catch up. The majority (55%) of all green and AI job postings advertised in the EU in 2022 did not require any university degree. Only 16% of AI jobs and 11% of green jobs asked for a graduate degree. This indicates that firms are shifting to skill-based hiring; individual skills rather than formal degrees have become the entry tickets to twin transition jobs. 

Some of the most requested AI skills in Europe revolve around Deep Learning and Neural Networks – the backbone for current AI applications. The skills most in demand relate to the building of AI models such as ChatGPT or Dall-E. For green jobs, skills around renewable energy and recycling are most sought after. Firms focus on specific domains in different countries. German employers prioritise ‘computer vision’ skills, a term relating to teaching AI how to ‘see’. French firms have a strong appetite for skills in the field of Photovoltaics. 

Bruegel’s dashboard offers a snapshot of educational prerequisites, skills on the rise and growth patterns. It homes in on the specifics of AI roles, from ChatGPT to natural language processing and showcases green job requirements such as sustainable energy, conservation, or waste management. It outlines the different educational landscapes, role requirements and countries experiencing significant growth across Europe. 

Explore Bruegel’s Twin Transition dashboard online now.

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About the authors

  • Fabian Stephany

    Fabian Stephany is a Non-Resident Fellow at Bruegel and a member of the Future of Work and Inclusive Growth project which analyses the impact of technology on the nature, quantity and quality of work, welfare systems and inclusive growth. He is a Departmental Research Lecturer in AI & Work at the Oxford Internet Institute (OII), University of Oxford, and a Research Affiliate at the Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society in Berlin.

    With the Skill Scale Project, Fabian investigates how we can create sustainable jobs via data-driven reskilling in times of technological disruption. He is a co-creator of the Online Labour Observatory – a digital data hub, hosted by the OII and the International Labour Organisation (ILO), for researchers, policy makers, journalists, and the public interested in online platform work.

    Fabian holds a PhD and degrees in Economics and Social Sciences from different European institutions, including Universitá Bocconi Milan and University of Cambridge. As an Economist and Senior Data Scientist, Fabian has been facilitating Digital Policy Entrepreneurship with partners in the international policy landscape, such as the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank, the ILO, or the OECD in Paris.

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