Is Green Development a Contradiction or an Opportunity? The Skills Perspective | Program | DW | 12.04.2012
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Is Green Development a Contradiction or an Opportunity? The Skills Perspective

epa03019484 Chinese workers laboring at a construction site where large solar panels are installed in the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-city in Tianjin Binhai New Area, China, 30 November 2011. A joint project by the Singapore and Chinese government, the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-city is a 30 square kilometer development built with the latest green technologies and to serve as a model for future eco-cities in developing countries. With the capacity to accommodate 350,000 people, the eco-city features energy efficient buildings and use of renewable energy power sources such as solar, wind and geothermal energy. Countries are engaged in climate change talks in Durban aimed at cutting global carbon emissions of which China's position is key as the world's largest emitter of greenhouse gases. EPA/HOW HWEE YOUNG

25 June, 2:00 p.m., Room A/B
Hosted by
UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training

Sustainability as a concept is largely accepted by countries rich and poor, but the common practice seems to be: "Let’s get our economies going first – we’ll worry about sustainability later". Especially in fast-emerging economies with high productivity and a low-cost labor forces, environmental considerations are often neglected in favor of rapid growth. In industrialized countries, sustainability is often more integrated in learning and production processes. But everywhere, the working population remains a largely untapped resource to achieve the transition to green economies and societies.

Ideally, a qualified and well-informed workforce is the key to ensure the industry’s responsible use of our planet’s resources. Youth and adults must gain access to the skills and competences they need to face the demands of the 21st century green labor market. But in reality, environmental considerations are at the bottom of the list when it comes to satisfying one’s need for bread, butter and shelter. Reconciling competing economic aspirations of rich and poor countries in a global economy facing climate change, energy insecurity and ecological scarcity is one of the biggest challenges that need to be taken on.

Journalists are crucial in safeguarding balanced and unbiased information about energy, the environment, education and skills, and in sensitizing learners, workers and consumers to the change they can make.

This workshop will focus on questions such as:
  • Is green development a contradiction or an opportunity, or is it just another catchy concept that will be caught up by the realities of market competition?
  • What skills do people need to enable the transition to greener economies and societies?
  • What must the education and training sector do to meet the challenges of green development?
  • What is the role of the media in informing about green skills for sustainable economies?

Participants are invited to shape the debate on green skills for a low-emission economy with educators, policy-makers, industry representatives and education journalists.


Ghosh, Shoba Mishra
Director FICCI (Industry's Voice for Policy Change), India

Himmelrath, Armin (Moderator)
Freelance journalist, Germany

Iskandar, Laila
Chairperson of Community and Institutional Development (CID) Consulting, Egypt

Khambayat, Prof. Rajesh
National Institute of Technical Teachers' Training and Research, Department of Education and Research, Bhopal, India

Majumdar, Shyamal
Head of theUNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training, Bonn, Germany

Rückert-Hennen, Colette
Global Head of People and Brand, SolarWorld AG, Bonn, Germany