During the sidelines of the UN Climate Change Conference (COP28), a session titled “Accelerate Green Innovation” was hosted by AE4RIA and Huawei in collaboration with the UNFCCC Global Innovation Hub. The event marked the release of a white paper titled “Twin Skills for the Twin Transition: Defining Green Digital Skills and Jobs.” Developed in partnership with the ATHENA Research Centre, Sustainable Development Unit under AE4RIA, PwC, and with contributions from EIT Digital, the report serves as a guide for the creation of new training programs aimed at equipping the green digital workforce necessary for achieving net-zero goals.
Vicky Zhang, Vice President of Corporate Affairs at Huawei, inaugurated the event by expressing pride in launching the report alongside partners. Zhang emphasized the report’s focus on establishing a new classification for Green Digital Skills, outlining a strategic approach for reskilling and upskilling individuals to contribute to the development and dissemination of net-zero technologies in line with the Paris Agreement objectives.
Salvatore Moccia, Head of Education and Skills at EIT Digital, highlighted the challenges faced by European companies in finding workers with the right skill set, emphasizing the need for a paradigm shift in defining, identifying, and developing skills to address the digital and green transitions. Moccia underscored the alignment of these efforts with ongoing reskilling and upskilling programs.
In a time of multiple crises, the report underscores the inseparability of economic growth and sustainability. The ubiquity of digital technologies in our lives has accelerated changes, particularly in the context of a clean-tech revolution driven by the imperative to generate green energy, potentially reshaping job landscapes.
During the launch event, Dr. Barbara Botos, Ambassador-at-large for Climate at the Ministry of Energy of Hungary, emphasized the crucial role of balanced development across sectors to accelerate the green transition. Concerns were raised about Europe’s readiness to meet the skills demand, especially in light of predictions by SolarPower Europe that one million jobs in the EU solar sector will emerge by 2025. Huawei, as an industry player, committed to expanding training offerings to meet evolving educational needs.
Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, President EAERE and Chair of SDSN Global Climate Hub, led the research efforts and warned of accelerating structural changes in labor markets due to the Twin Transition in the context of the European Green Deal. Koundouri expressed pride in the collaboration, which aims to inform stakeholders about the new labor needs to achieve climate neutrality by 2050.
Dr. Hui Cao, Huawei Vice President for European Public Affairs, concluded the event by urging collective efforts to disseminate the report. Cao emphasized the vast challenges posed by climate change and the potential for collaborative action to develop the talent needed to leverage digitalization for a revolutionary approach to sustainability.
The report is accessible at: https://www.europeandigitalskills.eu/white-paper/