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Education and Government Must Collaborate for Digital Skills

According to research initiatives put in place by the government the IT industry may end up becoming overlooked.

A report collated by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) found that one of the main barriers to improving digital skills in the UK is a lack of collaboration between bodies such as councils, schools and employers.

The report said: "Local partnerships and networks - local enterprise partnerships, councils, further education colleges, universities and employers - should work together to determine the skill needs for their local area, so education and training provision is better matched to local demand.

"Government must encourage these partnerships to share best practice and knowledge of successful programmes and training schemes."

The report found that 20% of adults do not have the basic digital skills and 74% of those without digital skills do not have access to the internet.

The government has attempted to bridge the skills gap in several different ways, including introducing computer science as a mandatory subject in schools and wider access to broadband through the Broadband Delivery UK initiative (BDUK).

The report stated: "By not effectively linking supply of digital skills to immediate, medium and long-term demand, the relative ranking of the UK - in terms of investment in IT and utilisation compared with other major countries - is slipping.

"This may make the UK a less attractive investment location and place to do business."

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