NCET-Dell “Upskilling the Future Workforce for the Digital Economy” Project Seminar


Beijing, September 11, 2023 – The National Center of Educational Technology (NCET) and Dell Technologies jointly hosted the “Upskilling the Future Workforce for the Digital Economy” project seminar in China.  

The seminar brought together key stakeholders, including Mr. Zhao Xianzhi, Deputy Chief of the National Centre for Educational Technology (NCET), Mr. Robert Parua, Programme Specialist for Education at UNESCO Beijing, Mr. Joseph Keating, Trade, Commercial, Science, Technological, and Innovation Counsellor at the Embassy of Ireland in China, Mr. Peter Yang, Education Programme Manager of Enterprise Ireland, Mr. Damian O’Sullivan, CEO of the ICDL Foundation, Ms. Tina Wu, General Manager of ICDL Asia, Mr. Lan Xiaoyu, General Manager of ICDL China, Mr. Wang Weijia, Head of Government Affairs at Dell Technologies Greater China; and Ms. Jane Ma, CSR Manager of Dell Technologies Greater China. 

The seminar was chaired by Mr. Zhao Lin, the Director of Vocational Education Teaching Resources Division at NCET and featured other participation from representatives of Dell Technologies, ICDL China, and various educational institutions.  

In his welcome speech, Mr. Zhao Xianzhi emphasised that digital education is a fundamental component of China’s broader digital strategy and a global imperative. He highlighted that this initiative aligns with both the digital China strategy and the global trends in education development. He praised the collaborative efforts between Dell Technologies and vocational colleges, which have provided substantial support and accelerated vocational education reform in China. He noted the positive impact on the international computer application certification development within Chinese institutions. Mr. Zhao expressed his hope that the seminar would generate fresh ideas to ensure the project’s continued success, maintaining high quality and fostering stronger social influence while realising the strategic value of education digitalisation.  

Mr. Jiang Bolun, from the Vocational Education Development Department of NCET, provided insights into the three-year journey of implementing the CEDF-Dell “Upskilling Future Workforce for the Digital Economy” project and announced its expansion into four new provinces in the upcoming fourth project year. Mr. Wang Weijia, Head of Government Affairs at Dell Technologies Greater China, reiterated Dell Technologies’ commitment to strengthening cooperation and support for the project.  

Mr. Damian O’Sullivan, CEO of ICDL Foundation, highlighted the importance of collaborative efforts in driving the project’s development, particularly within the global context of vocational education. He stressed the idea that “ICDL should be both international and local”, highlighting the need for adaptability and relevance in the digital skills landscape.  

Mr. Joseph Curtin, Counsellor of Commerce, Science, Technology, and Innovation at the Irish Embassy in China conveyed the Irish government’s affirmation and support for the project. Mr. Robert Parua, Programme Specialist for Education at UNESCO Beijing, shared his views on development of educational informatisation in China and expressed support for the project’s sustainability and growth.  

In the closing remarks, Mr. Zhao Lin, the Director of Vocational Education Teaching Resources Division at NCET, called for sincere cooperation among all project stakeholders. He emphasised the need to enrich the project’s content during implementation and work collectively to advance information technology in vocational colleges while enhancing the digital skills of both educators and students. 

ICDL – The Digital Skills Standard