Highly skilled workers generate innovation and competitiveness, growth and jobs, prosperity and quality of life. Right now, however, it is proving impossible to fill many vacancies in Germany's engineering sector, a sector which is so crucial to the success of our economy. Due to demographic developments, this gap is likely to grow larger in the coming years. We aim to take a number of measures to tackle this problem and thus to safeguard the future supply of skilled workers.

  • We want to inspire enthusiasm for jobs related to natural and engineering sciences. This means that technical and scientific courses have to play a greater role in school and university curricula. Given the growing lack of skilled workers, these types of occupation offer outstanding job and career prospects.
  • We would like to whet the appetite of and enthusiasm among children and young people for technology so that more young people - women in particular - choose a profession in the natural sciences or engineering.
  • We want to familiarise school students from an early age with the natural sciences and engineering in a way that they will understand. Young people can already experiment with technology in the labs of research facilities associated with the Economic Affairs Ministry (for example, in the German Aerospace Centre's "school labs").
  • We support school and university reforms that aim to achieve greater efficiency and competition.
  • At higher education institutions and non-university research establishments, we are taking steps to foster a stronger entrepreneurial climate so that more students will be attracted to the idea of launching their own innovative businesses.
  • Together with the Federal Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs and the Federal Employment Agency, we launched a campaign to attract qualified professionals in June 2012 which supplements the Federal Government's Skilled Labour Concept with a broad-based, high-profile campaign to inform and motivate people to come and work in Germany. It is directed to potential qualified professionals, companies and the public in Germany and also to international qualified professionals (www.make-it-in-germany.com).
  • We support the private sector's efforts to provide their staff with advanced training opportunities and to better harness the potential of older employees.
  • For example, we have set up a centre of excellence on securing the demand for skilled labour: it mainly provides small and medium-sized companies with current information, practical assistance and good examples about how to cover their skills needs.
  • We have also set up a skills monitor: every six months, it provides an up-to-date overview of the training and skills situation in German commerce.