Posts Tagged ‘jobs’

EFP Brief No. 178: Teaching and Learning for an ICT Revolutionised Society

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011

This exercise was part of the EU FP7 Farhorizon Project which was aimed at piloting, developing and testing in real situations a foresight methodology designed to bring together key stakeholders to explore the longer term challenges that face their sector (or that cut across sectors) and to build a shared vision that could guide the development of the relevant European research agenda. This approach was applied to the theme “Teaching and Learning in an ICT Revolutionised Society”.

The Information Society

The development of information and communication technology (ICT) in the last decades doubtlessly ranks amongst the major revolutions in our ability to communicate and to manage information. Over the last three decades, ICT has become a prominent feature of our everyday lives. The development of the personal computer and office productivity software in the eighties led to the widespread adoption of such technology in the business world. Similarly, the introduction of the worldwide web in the nineties and the falling cost of hardware brought computing to the masses and has led to the personal computer becoming a commonplace item in the domestic environment.

The ICT revolution has resulted in a wealth of opportunity for increased competitiveness, innovative business models, government service delivery, new methods of learning and personal use. The European Commission has endeavoured to accelerate realisation of the benefits of ICT through a number of measures included in the i2010 Strategy (2005-2010) and more recently in the Digital Agenda 2020.

Despite significant progress, however, there exist numerous areas where the power of ICT has not been adequately exploited, and much remains to be done if Europe is to maintain its competitiveness and achieve its economic and social objectives. This initiative is based on the following rationales:

  • the social rationale arises from the fact that knowledge and familiarity with ICT constitute an important dimension of employability and of general social participation;
  • the pedagogic rationale emphasises the contribution that ICT can make to the improvement of the quality of education by providing rich and exciting environments for learning;
  • the vocational rationale stresses the need of ICT learning and teaching for future professions where ICT will be utilised;
  • the economic rationale relates to the potential for increasing efficiency and effectiveness in economic activities, together with opportunities for developing innovative products and services based on advances in information technology.

The Success Scenario Approach

The “Success Scenario Approach” is an action-based approach where senior stakeholders develop a shared vision of what success in the area would look like, together with appropriate goals and indicators, which provide the starting point for developing a road-map to get there. The purpose of having such a vision of success is to set a ‘stretch target’ for all the stakeholders. The discussion and debate forming an integral part of the process leads to the development of mutual understanding and a common platform of knowledge that helps to align the actors for action.

In practice, the structure of a workshop begins with a consideration of key drivers or challenges, builds a vision of success, and then focuses on actions to make the vision a reality. The workshop helps flagging hidden bottlenecks and constraints that might impede progress and facilitates identifying windows of opportunity for joint policy coordination and action.

Important outcomes of these workshops are the insights they provide in terms of the level of maturity in policy design and development and the viability and robustness of long-term policy scenarios to guide policy-making. The workshops also provide indications on whether there is a need for further discussion to refine thinking and policy design and/or to bring additional stakeholders into the discussion.

During the workshop experts from the domains of education and ICT met with policy-makers and other stakeholders to explore a foresight vision of the contributions that ICT could make in the areas of education, business, industry and society. The workshop also aimed to identify what measures would be necessary to develop the required skills.

A number of meetings were held with the EU Commission’s Directorate General for Research & Innovation to establish the approach to be followed and to clarify the focus of the exercise. An initial description of the ecology was prepared as background for the workshop. The event was held in Brussels on 3 December, 2010 with the participation of 30 experts and policy-makers.

The first part of the workshop focused on setting the scene and establishing the need for revitalised and coherent policy governance. A second session aimed at developing a common vision of the role of education in equipping European citizens with the skills needed in the coming decades. The third session sought to identify the key policies and instruments needed to achieve the vision, while the fourth involved prioritisation of the policy recommendations resulting from the earlier sessions. The fifth and final session focused on assessing ways in which key groups can shape the pace and direction of education in Europe.

Information Society Requires ICT Literacy

The workshop participants articulated a vision of a Europe where future generations possess an adequate repertoire of skills and competences to enable them to participate actively in a digital society, both in their personal and in their professional lives.

Need to Promote Widespread ICT Literacy

Most of the younger generation, the so called digital natives, have grown up using technology that has now become an integral part of their everyday lives. This has imparted an easy familiarity and a sense of confidence in its use and above all a willingness to make use of such technology without a second thought. Nevertheless, their experience is largely based on using the technology for social networking and entertainment while their skills are at best incomplete in terms of exploiting ICT in other settings and in their professional lives.

Similarly, the large-scale deployment of computers in business and industry over the last two decades resulted in significant segments of the workforce undergoing training or learning to use computers on the job. However, such training normally focused on specific applications rather than having a broad base of applicability, hereby limiting the ability of such individuals to fully exploit the potential of ICT.

In spite of such business-driven learning, however, there still remains a significant sector of the working population which has not yet had the opportunity or taken the initiative to develop digital competencies, severely limiting their professional development and career options. Other sectors of the population, such as those not in active employment and the underprivileged, have had limited opportunity to learn to use ICT.

ICT Must Become a Tool in Education

The level of utilisation of ICT as a tool in education remains low overall, and there is lack of a common approach across the EU as well as within individual countries. While most schools are now equipped with computers, Internet access and occasionally more sophisticated equipment such as interactive whiteboards, effective eLearning requires far more than the mere introduction of hardware in the classroom. In general, however, schools have failed to develop visions and strategies on the way they can integrate e-learning effectively throughout the curriculum and in the school environment.

Teacher training on the use and role of ICT in learning has not been adequately addressed, and exploitation of ICT by and large has been left up to the initiative of individual teachers. In most cases, school curricula have not been adequately updated to take into account the needs for developing ICT skills.

ICT offers the opportunity of a superior learning experience through the use of multimedia, specialised software and educational games. However, established textbook publishers have largely failed to embrace ICT and to develop teaching material incorporating simulations, games and other modern tools. Although much educational content has been developed, the lack of a recognised certification mechanism means that most educational institutions are unable to make use of this material. Some countries have recently embarked on the development of libraries of ICT material (Wikiwijs Netherlands, KlasCement Belgie).

Society Called Upon to Ensure ICT Participation

Most EU countries have introduced a number of campaigns and schemes aimed at improving the ICT skills of the elderly, the underprivileged and the marginalised. However, sustained effort for this target population is required and adequate opportunities should be made available for all members of society to have access to the Internet, to master the necessary skills, and to benefit from modern technological developments.

Vision of a Europe Reaping the Benefits of ICT

The workshop participants articulated a vision of a Europe where future generations possess an adequate repertoire of skills and competences to enable them to participate actively in a digital society, both in their personal as well as in their professional lives. European educational systems need to take advantage of improved learning mechanisms offered by ICT, and individuals must be able to manoeuvre safely in the virtual world whilst being creative and constructive contributors to society and to our economy. Europe must produce a cadre of workers who are able to leverage the power of ICT to enhance their productivity, to develop improved products and processes, and to reap social and economic benefits through the development of innovative solutions.

In order to achieve this vision, the following policy recommendations have been put forward.

Crosscutting Policy Approach and Strong Education Initiative at EU Level

The participants supported the idea of a high-level initiative driven by the European Commission and synergising policies of other policy domains, such as innovation and industrial policy. An analogy was drawn with the Commission’s approach to innovation, a successful horizontal initiative cutting across several organisational structures. The education initiative must be moved to a prominent position on the political agenda and should be given a high profile and strongly promoted to raise awareness among the public and stakeholders at all levels. It must be underpinned by the development of a roadmap establishing targets and lines of action while emphasising the imperative rationales (economic, social and vocational) without discouraging pedagogically driven activities. Evidence-based policy development was also mentioned as one of the criteria. It was also suggested to promote the use of structural funds and other sources of funding, such as the European Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme, to finance the initiatives referred to above.

Participants discussed various approaches towards monitoring progress in the area of ICT in education and agreed that indicators currently in use need to be reexamined. For instance, the ratio of students to computers is not a meaningful metric on its own and needs to be supplemented with measures of frequency of use, teacher skills, and use of educational software amongst others. Monitoring of progress should be complemented by tools of trust including information on available instruments, good practice and success stories. Defining references for ICT competencies, in relation to the self-learning potential and ICT applications in society, for different levels and types of schools, subjects and disciplines, and in regard to future fields of employment was also supported.

Action is needed to stimulate national and international networks of stakeholders to unlock resources and to exchange experience and good practice between all stakeholders to include discussion of policies, foresight and research outcomes. Governments should work with hardware suppliers and use procurement power to stimulate the development of well-specified state of the art, schoolproof, low-cost hardware to enable each student to have his or her own tablet.

Educational System Needs to Embrace ICT Literacy as a Key Objective

The educational system plays a pivotal role in preparing future generations with the skills they need for a fulfilling career, including ICT. Despite some progress in educational systems towards meeting this goal, much remains to be done. The scale of change that is needed calls for a concerted effort to implement changes at various levels before the educational system can be deemed to have reached a satisfactory standard.

University training courses for new teachers urgently need to address the pedagogical dimension by including instruction in modern teaching methods, exploiting ICT hardware and software to provide a superior educational experience to students. This needs to be complemented with specialised courses for existing teachers in order to reach the entire teaching workforce.

There is a growing understanding that kids do not automatically attain the required skills. Curricula need to be updated and should include ICT literacy. ICT applications should be integrated in subject and disciplinary learning, and opportunities for self-learning through the use of ICT should be promoted and exploited. Research and pilot studies need to be undertaken to obtain a better understanding of how teaching methods can be improved. Educational materials need to be digitalised and improved, and textbooks must be complemented by courseware based on rich multimedia and incorporating graphical simulation and educational games. Educational material providers need to engage in dialogue with schools and may require encouragement to invest in the development of such materials.

Networks of stakeholders (such as schoolnet) provide an opportunity for mutual learning and exchange of good practice, and such initiatives should be further encouraged and broadened to include discussion of policies, foresight and research outcomes.

At the higher education levels, ICT should be incorporated into other disciplines (e.g. medicine, social sciences) whenever possible. Students should be given greater freedom of choice in selecting study modules – this should promote creativity and allow students to build on their strengths.

Encourage Employers to Qualify the Workforce

While many workers have been trained or have developed computer skills on the job, there still remains a significant sector of the working population which has not yet had the opportunity or taken the initiative to develop digital competencies. This reduces their career prospects and negatively impacts the competitiveness of the workforce. Participants supported the lifelong learning paradigm and the idea that public and private employers should introduce programmes to enable their employees to develop the necessary competencies. One way to encourage this would be through the use of financial instruments such as tax incentives, subsidies and grant schemes funded by central government.

However, merely addressing digital literacy skills in individuals is not sufficient. ICT presents myriad opportunities for productivity gains and competitive advantages in business and industry, and a more elaborate approach is called for. Tailor-made, sector-specific workshops should be organised with the objective of enabling employees to discuss how ICT can contribute to innovation within their particular sphere.

Inclusive Policies for All Members of Society

The participants identified the need for specific schemes targeted at adults who are not in productive employment to catalyse them into embracing modern technology.

A favourable environment must be put in place to provide an opportunity for all members of society including the elderly, the underprivileged and the marginalised to form part of the information society. Sustained efforts to promote broadband and drive down the costs of computers and Internet access are needed to facilitate availability for those requiring it for their personal use. Free courses on basic use of computers and the Internet will also help.

These sectors may need special encouragement to help them overcome the initial apprehension of dealing with technology. Multipliers such as social workers, carers, and others who are in direct contact with these individuals can be instrumental in informing them about opportunities and encouraging uptake. These workers should be provided with specialised training in this area, and their institutions should be provided with the equipment needed. Creative solutions should be encouraged where institutions such as schools, libraries and local community houses are aligned to raise the level of ICT awareness and literacy in deprived regions and neighbourhoods.

Authors: Victor van Rij                           

Brian Warrington                   

Sponsors: EU Commission
Type: EU-level single issue foresight exercise
Organizer: FP7 Farhorizon Project Coordinator: MIOIR, Luke Georghiou
Duration: Sept 08-Feb11 Budget: N/A Time Horizon: 2050 Date of Brief: March 2011


Download EFP Brief No. 178_ICT in Education

Sources and References

European Commission [EC] (2010), Europe’s Digital Competitiveness Report 2010, SEC(2010) 627, DG INFSO, EC.

European Commission [EC] (2009), Indicators on ICT in Primary and Secondary Education, October 2009, DG EAC, EC.

European Commission [EC] (2010), Annual Information Society Report 2009 Benchmarking i2010: Trends and Main Achievements, COM(2009) 1103.

European Commission [EC] (2010), A Digital Agenda for Europe, COM(2010) 245

For detailed information also visit the Farhorizon website:

EFP Brief No. 160: Future Jobs and Skills in the EU

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011

The renewed Lisbon strategy stresses the need for Europe to place more emphasis on anticipating skill needs. Globalisation, technological change and demographic developments (including ageing and migration) pose huge challenges in that respect, comprising both risks and opportunities. At the same time, a lack of information on future skill needs has been a long-standing concern in Europe. With specific targets set in the Lisbon strategy, the need for regular forward-looking assessments has gained momentum. Subsequently, this resulted in the recent New Skills for New Jobs initiative by the European Commission, and related European projects aimed at identifying future job and skills needs using quantitative modelling approaches. While having advantages of robustness, stakeholders as well as the European Commission identified a clear need for complementary, more qualitative forward-looking analysis. Consequently, the European Commission (DG EMPL) earlier this year commissioned a series of 17 future-oriented sector studies (Horizon 2020) on innovation, skills and jobs following a qualitative methodology. The final results of these studies will become available in spring 2009, and will be followed by a number of other initiatives over the year to come and beyond.

EFMN Brief No. 160_Future Jobs and Skills

EFP Brief No. 146: Germany 2020 New Challenges for a Land on Expedition

Sunday, May 22nd, 2011

The brief provides a short overview of a project in which Deutsche Bank Research has combined its own foresight expertise with inputs from the bank’s business strategists and external experts in order to develop scenarios for the future development of the German economy and society against the backdrop of intensifying structural change.

Germany on the Path toward a “Project Economy”

Deutsche Bank and its clients require knowledge about the future for their investment decisions. Deutsche Bank Research provides this “corporate foresight”. A multidisciplinary team develops and applies a wide range of methods to identify longterm macro trends. These foresight results, which are achieved on the basis of structured, process-based, quantitative and qualitative analyses, are fed into discussions with strategic management and clients as well as into public debate on broader economic, societal and political issues. The next two decades will be crucial for determining the path Germany will take over the long-term. Will German society be able to cope with the demographic pressures bearing down on the economy and the state’s finances? Will Germany succeed in redefining its role in the rapidly changing global economy and world order? Will Germany be a leader or a laggard on the road to a knowledge economy? Our first step was to sketch four alternative scenarios outlining how the German economy and society may have developed by the year 2020 (“Expedition Deutschland”, “Wild West”, “Drawbridge Up” and “Skatrunde (Playing Cards) with the Neighbours”). In the second step, we used broadly-based trend analysis to examine which of these four future scenarios is the most plausible.

The “Expedition Deutschland” Scenario – Knowledge and Cooperation Are Critical

The core elements of the “Expedition Deutschland” scenario for 2020 (formulated from the perspective of the year 2020) are the following:

In 2020, the “project economy” delivers 15% of value creation in Germany (in 2007 the figure was about 2%). The “project economy” refers to usually temporary, extraordinarily collaborative
and often global processes of value creation. For many companies, this type of cooperation is in many cases the most efficient way of doing business. This is because product life cycles have shortened further; the breadth and depth of the knowledge necessary for developing and marketing successful products have increased rapidly; successful products are increasingly the result of convergence between different fields of technology and knowledge; and many companies and research institutes are even more strongly specialised in 2020 than they were in 2007. Consequently companies collaborate ever more frequently on joint projects, often in the form of legally and organisationally independent project companies. They delegate specialised employees or parts of their organisation to these projects, invest capital or put their knowledge and networks at their disposal. In this way, companies can respond flexibly to the considerably higher demands on knowledge and rapidity in the global markets while sharing the costs and risks. This is often – but by no means always – their key to success: in 2020, too, collaboration generates considerable personal and strategic tensions. Factors that help to reduce the frictions on the technical side are mature, highly standardised information technologies. The project economy is closely intertwined with the traditional way of doing business. In 2020, many companies are continuing to go it alone with the market launch of their products. Often, though, these same companies cooperate in other markets – for instance the innovation-intensive ones – by taking the project economy approach. Germany’s small and mediumsized enterprises (SMEs) benefit in particular from the project economy. SMEs can use their advantages of specialisation and organisational flexibility – and are additionally boosted by a renewed surge in start-up activity. Open innovation processes helped to conquer new markets. In 2020, Germany has caught up with its competitors in markets for cutting-edge technology and knowledge-intensive services. Today, innovation is Germany’s core competence, with “Created in Germany” often being first choice, especially in Asia and the Middle East. Some of the main reasons for this success are collaborative innovation as well as intelligent sharing and exchange of knowledge and intellectual property. A project- economy approach to work has proved efficient especially in the early innovative and thus particularly knowledgeintensive phases of value creation. Moreover, many German corporations (and their local and international project companies) have benefited over the past few years from having more closely integrated the generation of “sovereign customers” into their processes. These customers are well networked via interactive forums and have up-to-date knowledge of prices and qualities in the areas that interest them. By contrast, many business investments in long-term research and development will have fallen by the wayside by 2020. They are often poorly adapted to the more short-lived valueadded patterns of today. Knowledge is traded in efficient markets in 2020. Knowledge
about customers, markets and many other topics is valued and traded much more efficiently today than back in 2007. The operators of such knowledge-based services are flourishing. Intellectual property has become a commonly used asset class:
investors may choose from a broad spectrum of topic-oriented patent funds, copyright securitisations etc. Moreover, intellectual capital has swung into the focus of company valuations:
the capital market now takes interest not only in a company’s traditional balance sheet ratios but also its research efficiency, education and training budget, and cooperation ratings.

The young and seasoned minds that house this intellectual capital benefit from efficient learning markets in 2020. Private operators of learning services prosper. Also, the public universities and other educational facilities have become more efficient following a wave of consolidation. Furthermore, they are more strongly involved in the market for modular education and training.

From Direct Regulation to Co-regulation

Government reduces its intervention and there is more coregulation. Co-regulation closely integrates citizens and companies. On the one hand, legitimation problems have motivated the state and still tight fiscal constraints have compelled it to cede part of its mandate to others. On the other, the regulatory issues have become increasingly complex. More than ever before, the state needs to tap the knowledge of citizens and companies to be able to set suitable framework conditions. Regulatory regimes that emerge in this way are more intelligently geared to the needs of business and society. They are more transparent for people and companies alike and ease the struggle into new markets. In general though the state’s abandonment of parts of its mandate has resulted in social transfers now coming with strings attached. In addition, more and more social services (e.g. long-term care) are organised on a private basis. Germany has become a “stakeholder society” based on reciprocal action.

Successful New Middle Class – Low Earners Lose Out

A new middle class emerges in German society by 2020, but the lower periphery falls behind. The middle class celebrates its comeback. The new opportunities for upward social mobility and the higher risk of social decline, both being the consequence of increasingly global and volatile value creation, have clearly shown the middle class the value of knowledge. Many Germans with a mid-range income therefore invest heavily in education – and thus gain qualifications for the demanding, but at the same time well-paying jobs in the project economy.

Well-educated older people also benefit as they are intelligently integrated in the working world in 2020. By contrast, low earners have only limited access to the new learning markets, and young and old alike often have to fear for their livelihoods. International competition has an even more incisive impact on this group than on others. Many low earners are compelled to organise themselves in self-help networks and many have lost their faith in politicians.

Globalisation, Diversification in Energy Supply  and Digitisation Are Other Key Trends

These elements, however, are interrelated with three other aspects of structural change which are already well under way and which, in our view, have rather trend-like characteristics.

Globalisation leads to new centres of gravity in the international value creation chain. 

   Energy supply shows a broader mix and decentralised production. 

       Digitisation enables networked goods flows in the new Internet. 

Given the structural changes outlined here on the way to “Expedition Deutschland”, we expect Germany’s gross domestic product to grow at an average rate of 1.5% per year up to 2020. From a 2007 perspective, these changes will pave the way to extraordinary opportunities for business, society and politics, but also harbour substantial risks. Some key fields of action for business include, for instance, a structured analysis of collaboration options, a more systematic assessment of intangible investments, broader acceptance of new forms of education and training, and an increase in life-long learning activities.

Innovative Methodology to Deal with High Complexity in Scenario Analysis

The guiding question for our scenario analysis is how will structural change have affected the German economy by the year 2020? In order to answer this question, we applied a methodology based on a simple scenario approach. Normally, one identifies the two key drivers to build a “scenario matrix”. Each field in the scenario matrix represents a different combination of attributes (high/high, high/low etc.) of these two drivers, and one scenario is developed from each of their respective interactions (see Figure 1, for an overview of the different elements of our scenario analysis see box on page 4). In addition to these drivers, whose future development is uncertain, there are a number of trend-like drivers – whose future development is comparatively predictable (in the following they are referred to for short as “trends”) – which impact on all four scenarios. These trends show similar developments in all four scenarios.

But our scenario question is multi-faceted; the number of relevant drivers and trends is high. To cope with this complexity without losing too much information, we have advanced the above approach: we have aggregated drivers that are thematically related and whose development is correlated into “dynamics” (the trends, too, are aggregated into “trend-like dynamics”, see the figure Deriving scenarios by reducing complexity). Instead of taking individual drivers, we build the scenario matrix with the two key dynamics. Further information and a discussion of the merits and drawbacks of this approach can be found at

Nonetheless, through interaction with the other drivers, the trends can develop or impact slightly differently or at a different pace in each scenario. 

In the scenario method these drivers are often referred to as “determinants” and the trends as “premises“.


Concept of the “Most Plausible Scenario”

Classic scenario analysis examines alternative future developments – but without highlighting any one of the depicted scenarios as the most probable scenario. For good reason since the scenario method does not in itself deliver any (or sufficient) indications as to which picture of the future is the most probable.

We are deliberately breaking with tradition of future research here: we identified a number of trends or trend-like dynamics that have an exceptionally strong influence and whose general future development can be predicted particularly reliably. They are driving Germany in the direction of one of our four scenarios and therefore make it particularly plausible. We refer to this scenario as the focus scenario and call it “Expedition Deutschland“. These trends relate to developments in a broad spectrum of fields in business, society and politics as well as in science and technology. They partly reinforce each other, a factor that has further encouraged us to focus on this one scenario.[1]

[1] We have systematically analysed the interactions between many of these trends in the earlier project “Global Growth Centres 2020” (see Bergheim, Stefan (2005), loc. cit.).

Our focus on this scenario should therefore not be seen as a normative statement: our message is not that we are placing this scenario in the spotlight because it is the “most desirable” one in our view. But, despite all the plausibility bonuses derived from our trend analysis in favour of this scenario over the other three, the following needs to be stressed:

Our focus scenario is not a forecast. In 2020, Germany will look only in parts like we have described in our scenario. Rather, there will be a mix of elements of all four (and maybe other possible) scenarios.

Elements of our scenario analysis

“Driver”. Important factor of influence on future structural change in Germany whose future development is difficult to predict.

“Trend” (trend-like driver). Important factor of influence on future structural change in Germany whose future development is reliably predictable.

“Dynamic”. Aggregation of (mostly non-trend-like) drivers which are thematically related and whose development is correlated. The future development of a dynamic as a whole (without drawing on additional information) is difficult to predict.

“Trend-like dynamic”. Aggregation of (mostly trend-like) drivers that are thematically related and whose development is correlated. The future development of a trend dynamic as a whole is reliably predictable.

“Scenario”. An, in itself, consistent picture of the future (in this case of the German economy and society) derived from a

given combination of developments of the dynamics considered (and the expected developments of the trend-like dynamics). “Consistent“ means here that the interaction of the various elements has been taken into account.

“Focus scenario”. The one of our four alternative scenarios for Germany in the year 2020 which we consider to be the most plausible owing to the future impact of some of the above “trends“ and “trend dynamics“.

Our message is that, as far as we can judge today, it appears plausible that Germany is more likely to resemble our focus scenario than the other pictures of the future developed here.

Illustration of the Scenarios

We have developed posters to sum up the content and convey an intuitive image of the key messages of our four scenarios. They depict the behaviour of businesses and citizens (as persons), the market playing field (as environment/terrain) and the regulatory framework (as sky/weather) in 2020. To give an example, here we show the poster for the “Expedition Deutschland” scenario discussed above.


Authors: Jan Hofmann; Ingo Rollwagen; Stefan Schneider
Sponsors: n.a
Type: n.a
Organizer: Deutsche Bank Research
Duration: 2006 – 2008
Budget: n.a.
Time Horizon: 2020
Date of Brief: January 2008

Download: EFMN Brief No. 146_Germany 2020

Sources and References


EFP Brief No. 139: Future Prospects of Care Facilities and Services for the Dependent Elderly in France

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

Following the submission of an initial report in July 2005 on the evolution of illness related to old age and estimations of the number of accommodations available for the dependent elderly, the French minister in charge of elderly affairs asked the Strategic Analysis Centre to further consider how to provide and finance the care of dependent persons until 2025. Relying on a single quantitative scenario, the report proposes a global strategy turning on several key principles: a preference for in-home care and supplying treatment in a welcoming environment, reliance on technological and social innovation, the qualitative improvement of establishments housing the most dependent persons and the use of new regulatory tools in order to promote performance and a better territorial distribution.

Creating a Free Choice Scenario

For economic and social reasons, the French government is willing to give the elderly a freedom of choice regarding
healthcare and accommodations. Such a policy requires the simultaneous and complementary development of services
designed to care for the elderly in their own homes as well as access to retirement homes. A policy to that end has been launched in the framework of the first “Ageing and Solidarity” plan, which includes a significant attempt to increase availability of all the types of care for the dependent elderly. Efficient investment implies an extensive
study of a balanced scenario including the development of a global offer covering all types of home and institutional
care. In this respect, the minister in charge of elderly affairs asked the Strategic Analysis Centre to

  • establish the number of additional rooms in homes for dependant elderly (EHPAD1) needed from 2010-2015 and an estimation for the year 2025,
  • anticipate the number of home care assistants required in these two time horizons,
  • analyse the geographical distribution and propose guidelines for better EHPAD accommodations,
  • examine issues related to financing and ensuring an even geographical distribution.

A first report was elaborated in 2005 with quantitative forecasts including various scenarios of home and institutional care capacities. The second report, published in June 2006, proposes a single scenario, including an estimation of the requested workforce, taking societal and financial aspects into account.

Developing the Scenarios and Political Options

Studying the ageing society implies taking different variables into account such as demography, healthcare improvement, the development of people’s behaviour and also various political options.

In addition to the Strategic Analysis Centre’s staff, the National Institute of Economic Statistics (INSEE), the National Solidarity Fund for Autonomy (CNSA), the health ministry’s department of statistics (DREES) and other central administration resources were solicited for this exercise.

First Report: an Extensive Quantitative Analysis

The first report aimed at exploring possible scenarios for the development of the number of accommodations available for the dependent elderly (EHPAD) for the years 2010, 2015 and 2025. This exercise required the following sequence of calculations:

  • elderly population growth,
  • the development of the prevalence of dependency within this population,
  • the consequences in terms of demand for home and institutional care,
  • achievable supply of accommodations and workforce in this sector.

As a result, five scenarios were adopted to reflect different balances between home and institutional care. In addition, each of these scenarios was developed based on two different dependency rates and for three time-horizons.

In order to calculate the respective workforces that would be required for home and institutional care in each case, the team also had to envisage different levels of assistance.

Second Report: Further Exploration of a Single  Scenario and Elaboration of Recommendations

The second report was elaborated by a group of 60 experts from various local and national institutions, universities, hospitals and associations. Their work also relied on the results of an ethnological study carried out in three different homes for dependent elderly.

First, the group conducted an in-depth analysis of a single scenario by distinguishing different levels of dependency and types of skills required for health care and assistance. The results were used to predict the development of the labour market in this sector until 2025.

Workshops were then organised in order to arrive at recommendations on how to conceive future homes for dependent elderly and optimise the financing of national and local schemes addressing the ageing population.

More Intensive Institutional
Care for the Most Dependent

Demographic development is reasonably predictable. The following chart gives a projection of the number of dependent elderly aged 75 and older:

x 1000

2005 2010 2015 2025 2030
High projection 682 741 808 920 1 017
Low projection 657 691 732 805    855

Source: Insee Destinie, projections Drees-Insee

The first report established five possible scenarios in order to capture the broadest possible range of impacts of population ageing on the caring system:

  • Scenario 1 assumed that the current distribution between home care and institutional care would remain constant, thus predicting an increased need for places in rest homes and other care institutions.
  • Scenario 2 and 3 planned for an increased recourse to home care: for all elderly, irrespective of the level of dependency prevalence (sc. 2), and for all elderly with the exception of the most dependent (sc. 3). These two scenarios led to a reduced need for specialised accommodations.
  • Scenarios 4 and 5 envisaged an increasing recourse to institutional care: for all elderly in scenario 4; for the most dependent only in scenario 5. Scenarios 2 and 4 were abandoned as too extreme, whereas scenario 3 was chosen as the most efficient and socially satisfactory framework for the future development of the French elderly care scheme.

Forecasts on Needs for Accom- modations and Human Resources

In this scenario, the rate of the most dependent elderly benefiting from institutional care is expected to reach 67% by 2010 and then be stabilised. Simultaneously, the rate of less dependent elderly who benefit from home care is expected to rise progressively.

This scenario thus assumes two consequences in terms of accommodations and human resources:

  • intensified care in specialised institutions and
  • more dense and diversified types of home care.
Needs for Specialised Facilities

Consequently, with the projected institutional care rates, the report recommends increasing the number of places in specialised facilities up to 680 000 in 2010 – among them 610 000 for the elderly aged 75 and older – and to stabilise this number after 2010.

The following targets for the distribution of places for the 75+ population show that, even within the institutional care solution, priority is given to temporary, flexible care solutions.

  2010 2015 2025
Little medicalised accommodations 90 000 90 000 90 000
EHPAD 420 000 402 000 392 000
Long-stay hospital accommodations 60 000 60 000 60 000
Temporary accommoda-


40 000 58 000 68 000
Total 610 000 610 000 610 000

Reaching these targets implies various actions: a sustained effort to create new places by 2010, but also withdrawing licences from obsolete structures and converting some nonspecialised accommodations into EHPAD.

Increased Need for Institutional and Home Care Personnel

The population in specialised institutions can thus be expected to increase by 2010 and be comparatively more dependent than it currently is. These two trends justify the need for a drastic increase in personnel in these institutions. The report team has chosen to rely on two projections in terms of supervision rates (number of staff per 100 residents):

  • a low projection: from 57.4 in 2003 to 75.7 in 2025,
  • a high projection: from 57.4 in 2003 to 81.4 in 2025.

As regards home care, the growing share of elderly people who would benefit from this solution implies that the need for staff in the medical, paramedical and social home care sector will also clearly increase.

In the current situation, each dependent person benefits from an average assistance volume of 150 hours per month (the calculation is based on the French dependence allocation distribution). The report team suggests increasing this average volume by 55% by 2025. It must be noted that these projections are based on the assumption that the help currently received by the elderly from their relatives will remain constant, which is all but certain.

Need for institutional and home care staff 2005-2025:

2005 2010 2015 2025
Low institutional care projection
Institut.-care staff 233 400 279 900 296 700 315 500
Home-care staff 375 600 415 500 501 400 739 500
Total 608 900 695 400 798 100 1 055 000
High institutional care projection
Institut.-care staff 233 400 290 000 313 800 333 000
Home-care staff 375 600 415 500 501 400 739 500
Total 608 900 705 500 815 200 1 072 500

In terms of job creation, in total, 342 000 to 360 000 positions will be available in this sector over the next ten years, which represents 4,6% of all available positions in the French economy (this includes net creations and replacements after retirement). Net job creation in the elderly care sector alone can be expected to account for 11% of new jobs in France over the same period.

Guidelines for Better EHPAD Accommodations:
Diversification and Territorial Distribution

The Social Background to the Free Choice Scenario

The target population (aged 85+, 2015-2020) forms a very different social group from today’s elderly. The current babyboomers are more individualistic; they have developed an identity of active (and exigent) consumers, are geographically and professionally mobile and are used to actively deciding upon matters affecting the course of their lives. These features will have to be taken into account in drawing up tomorrow’s care system and the care accommodations it is to provide. This system and the related accommodations will have to – answer a broad diversity of needs and thus provide an equally broad diversity of adapted services and – take into account a diversity of life territories, values and cultures, and thus be equitably distributed geographically to allow the elderly to maintain their life habits.

An EHPAD should ultimately provide its residents with all needed services and assistance, while being a true living place in the full sense of the word. This includes several objectives, which have some technical impacts.

Supporting a Project for Life and Maintaining Social Life
  • Project for life: EHPAD should be conceived so as to allow the residents to further develop and not to simply “end their lives”. This includes preserving their freedom in terms of time and space organisation, favouring creativity and encouraging autonomy.
  • Social life: Residents should be encouraged and supported in the perpetuation of their social life through the preservation of family links. This means that exchanges between the residents and the exterior should be encouraged

(vicinity, city, village etc.)

EHPAD’s Projected Features to Answer these Needs

Localisation elements

  • The geographical distribution of EHPADs should allow residents to remain in the vicinity of their former place of residence in order to facilitate preserving their family and social links.
  • EHPAD’s localisation should ensure a social openness: opportunities for the residents to leave the facility and have access to a city or village.

Technical features

  • Space organization in EHPAD should provide the residents with private, intimate spaces as well as with community spaces.
  • Specific features of the accommodations should allow a customisation of individual living quarters (mobile walls, Internet connections etc.)

Organisational features

  • Security and health norms should be intelligently adapted in order to provide the residents with all necessary services and care while infringing as little as possible upon their liberty.
  • A provision of diversified services should allow the residents to be provided with any needed service (medical and non-medical).


Dual Policy Challenge:
Services Synergy & Balanced  Geographical Distribution

The overall financing need over the 2006-2025 period is estimated at a total between 14-29 billion €. This would represent around 1.1% of GDP in 2010, 1.2% in 2015 and 1.5% in 2025.  This financial effort is considered not to be insurmountable, on two conditions: that savings are made in other domains in order to alleviate the burden on the social security resources and that an efficient redistribution is conducted between the hospital sector and the dedicated elderly care system.

Ensuring Sufficient Care Personnel

Professional Staff

A specific effort will have to be made to make medical, paramedical and social professions in the elderly care sector more attractive than they are today and to ensure an efficient balance between childcare, hospital care and elderly care staff.

Support to Involved Relatives

Several European states provide financial and fiscal incentives to relatives who reduce their working hours or even suspend their own careers to take care of a parent. In particular, France could follow the example of the German system where the social security system comes up for the social security contributions of people who have stopped working to take care of an elderly person.

Rethinking Programming and Efficiency

Proposing diversified care services while maintaining a fair geographical and cost distribution implies two levels of action:

  • Evaluating and programming at the national level in order to take inventory of the global needs and appreciate the relative financial burdens that have to be assumed locally. The team suggests that all involved actors adopt a unified evaluation methodology, which means rethinking the whole current social aid system. The state would have to shoulder a share of necessary start-up investments to ensure that the restructuring is initiated not only in the wealthier regions but rather equitably throughout the whole territory
  • Transferring a larger share of responsibilities (if not all of them) for elderly care to the French départements (sub-regional administrative level). As local administrations, they would be in a better position to adapt the services offered to local needs and specificities. In this respect, the report team suggests that a better synergy between all types of services be organized, for instance, by allowing EHPADs to manage, through new regulatory rules, the coordination between private and public, medical, paramedical and social services.

The Follow-up

The report was made public in late June 2006 at the same time as the government’s ‘Solidarité Grand Age’ plan, which it heavily draws upon. The plan concerns the 2007-2012 period and is projected to cost the French social security system 2.7 billion €. While most of sector’s representatives have overall welcomed this plan, the related financial allocation was viewed as underestimated.

Authors: Hugo Thenint – Louis Lengrand et Associés (LL&A)      
Sponsors: French minister of social security, elderly, disability and family affairs
Type: National – but includes case studies on other countries
Organizer: The Strategic Analysis Centre (former Commissariat au plan)
Duration: 2005-2006
Budget: n.a.
Time Horizon: 2025
Date of Brief: April 2008

Download: EFMN Brief No. 139_ Elderly Care in France

Sources and References

Strategic analysis centre:
La documentation française (first report):

EFP Brief No. 130: Migration: One of the Most Important Challenges for Europe

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

This brief presents major social, technological, economic, environmental and political trends and rationales for migration, followed by a number of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of migratory processes. In the last section, the brief concludes with a set of general policy options and some final remarks about the sources and data analysed.

EFMN Brief No. 130_Migration

EFP Brief No. 129: Rural Areas: One of the Most Important Challenges for Europe

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

This brief presents an overview of major trends and policy options for rural areas. A number of social, technological, economic, environmental and political trends as well as strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats will be highlighted, followed by ten major policy options in view of two traditional and conflicting objectives: rural socio-economic development and countryside protection.

EFMN Brief No. 129_Rural_Areas

EFP Brief No. 127: Malta’s Futures for Higher and Further Education

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

The main aim of this initiative was to promote more long-term futures and evidence-based approaches to governance, strategies, and policy development in the higher and further education in Malta under the aegis of the INTERREG IIIC FUTURREG Project. The FUTURREG Project (2005 – 2007) was designed to ensure that regional policies and regional development organisations were informed by high-quality futures tools and participatory processes with significant long-term impacts. This particular FUTURREG subproject/exercise focused on an urgent need to build up the strategic and organizational capacities of institutions in the higher and further education sector and to support them in using futures approaches and foresight tools in developing their strategies in Malta. The results of this work are being used by the Maltese National Commission for Higher Education to define a framework for futureoriented higher and further education strategies using futures approaches.

EFMN Brief No. 127_Education_in_Malta

EFP Brief No. 123: Scenarios 2026 for the South West of England

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

This study (which took place in 2004) presents four ‘socio-economic-political scenarios’ designed to stimulate, guide and inform strategic thinking about the future of one of nine English regions, namely the South West. The scenarios portray distinct pictures of the social, political and economic background against which the strategies for the South West can be reviewed and developed. They provide a consistent approach and serve as practical thinking tools. The scenarios are also intended to help organisations in the South West to assess their vulnerability to forces of change and to plan appropriate adaptation strategies.

EFMN Brief No. 123_South_West_England