Access to technology, how important it is for young NEETs?

According to the skills assessment conducted on NEET (Not in Employment, Education, or Training) youth in the previous year at StayOn Portugal, 41.6% of young people consider themselves to have average computer skills, and 12.2% consider themselves to have low computer skills.

One of the factors that may contribute to this feeling of lacking skills is the lack of access to a computer, the internet, or video conferencing features. Once again, the assessment of the young participants in StayOn Portugal 2022 shows that 23.1% of young people do not have access to a computer/laptop or tablet, and 32.1% are not familiar with Teams or Zoom. However, only 1.3% claim to not have access to the internet.

According to the assessment, it is clear that there is a significant portion of young people who face challenges related to computer skills and access to technology, which can impact their overall competencies.

According Digital Transformation of Society and its Impact on Young People’s Lives “The need to develop competencies and literacies seems to be prioritised and this can be one way of making digitalisation useful, to be able to understand technologies such as ICTs and to come to a situation where young people can choose when to use ICTs or not.”[1]

Gaps in policy landscape: obsolescence of skills, the need for up- and re-skilling not only for the labour market, but also for personal development, building stronger community cohesion and community resilience; how to ensure lifelong and lifewide learning for just green transitions, to move towards transversality, accessibility and breaking up the silos.

“Having a workforce with the skills that are in demand contributes to sustainable growth, leads to more innovation and improves companies’ competitiveness. Skilled workers enjoy better job opportunities as well as broader possibilities to fully engage in society. This is key to ensure that the economic recovery as well as the green and digital transitions are socially fair and just.” [2]

Certain algorithms in the form of e.g. programs, Computer agents (C-A), Artificial intelligence (AI), robotics or robots are created to carry out certain tasks and are increasingly present in society today.

“The European Digital Competence Framework includes five areas:  1) Information and data literacy, including management of content; 2) Communication and collaboration, and participation in society;  3) Digital content creation, including ethical principles; 4) Safety; and  problem solving”[3]

The StayOn Portugal project aims to empower young individuals to become active citizens in a digital society by harnessing digital technologies to enhance social inclusion and participation. The project recognizes the importance of enhancing and updating digital competencies. Therefore, it encourages young people to create and edit digital content, enabling them to express themselves through digital mediums. Additionally, the project assists young individuals in designing both individual and collaborative activities utilizing digital media and technology. It also emphasizes the importance of being aware of the diverse range of tools available for digital creativity, including free and open-source options.


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