European Conference: SKILLS FOR SMES

If you would like to know how to develop SKILLS FOR SMES and want to contribute to the uptake of Cybersecurity, IoT and Big Data in Europe, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to participate in this conference.

Location


Sofitel Hotel Europe (Place Jourdan 1, 1040 Brussels)


15 October 2019 - 9.00-18.00


Join us on 15 October 2019 for the European conference SKILLS FOR SMES to discuss with recognised experts how to tackle SME skills development in Big Data, Internet of Things and Cybersecurity. The conference will bring together over 200 experts from industry, trade unions, education and training organizations, governments and SMEs associations from across Europe.

Small and medium sized companies (SMEs) are the backbone of the European economy. However, as new technologies emerge, they need skills to adapt their workforce and exploit new opportunities. How to prepare for a cyberattack? How to analyse big data sets to enhance services and deliver better products? These are questions that SMEs need to answer in today’s market environment.

Therefore, the European Commission and EASME launched this important initiative to analyse and support SME skills development in Big Data, Internet of Things and Cybersecurity. Capgemini Invent, the European DIGITAL SME Alliance and Technopolis are proud to present the vision, roadmap and toolbox which have been developed by expert stakeholders from across Europe.

The event will focus on major themes addressing the importance of skills development and upskilling of SMEs to support their digital transformation. Among the topics to be discussed are the need to make SMEs more cyber resilient and hurdles in skills uptake. Speakers will provide best practices on how to successfully engage SMEs in upskilling and how to ensure more and better education and training offers tailored to SMEs. Recognised experts in this field will debate what is needed to increase the level of Big Data, IoT and Cybersecurity skills and capacity in SMEs in the coming years.

If you want to share your views on this important topic, please participate in our survey and be heard!

Among the speakers are listed:

  • Slawomir Tokarski, Director Innovation and Advanced Manufacturing, DG GROW, European Commission
  • Sanna-Mari Jäntti, Director Strategic Projects, City of Helsinki
  • Petra Püchner, European Commissioner of Baden-Württemberg and head of the Steinbeis Europe Center
  • Bo Sejer Frandsen, CEO it-forum, Vice-President of European DIGITAL SME Alliance

Contributing organisations represent international associations, innovative regions and cities, education and industry leaders.

Conference agenda
08:30 – 09:30 Registration and Welcome Coffee
09:30 – 09:40 Welcome address by the Chairperson Niels van der Linden, Principal consultant at Capgemini Invent
European policy to accelerate skills development in SMEs
09:45 – 10:00 Skills for industry Slawomir Tokarski, Director Innovation and Advanced Manufacturing, DG GROW, European Commission
Cities and regions are driving the growth of SMEs
10:00 – 10.20 The city as platform for SMEs to grow and flourish Sanna-Mari Jäntti, Director Strategic Projects, City of Helsinki
10:20 – 10.40 Make use of digitization opportunities for SMEs in Europe and Baden-Württemberg Dr. Petra Püchner, European Commissioner of Baden-Württemberg and head of the Steinbeis Europe Center
10:40 – 11:00 The importance of skills for SMEs & the European economy Bo Seyer Frandsen, CEO it-forum, Vice-President of European DIGITAL SME Alliance
11:00 – 11:15 Coffee break
11:15 – 11:30 A comprehensive strategy to support skills development in SMEs Niels van der Linden, Principal consultant at Capgemini Invent
A vision and strategy to increasing skills development and the cyber resilience of SMEs

This session will address the urgency of increasing the level of cybersecurity assurance for the European economy. Speakers will discuss the need for skills development and show how front runners deal with the challenge.

11:30 – 12:45 Panel discussion
Gerd Mueller, Vice-Chairman European Cyber Security Organization (ECSO)
Marco Bianchini, Policy analyst, Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs, Regions and Cities, OECD
Nineta Polemi, Policy officer Cyber Security, Technologies and Capacity Building, DG CONNECT, European Commission
Nina Olesen, Senior policy officer ECSO, Women4Cyber initiative
  George Sharkov, Advisor to the Minister of Defense of Bulgaria, Director ESI CEEI, Member of the High-Level AI Expert Group
Moderator:  Niels van der Linden, Principal consultant at Capgemini Invent
12:45 – 14:00 Lunch
Successful mechanisms to engage SMEs in upskilling

An essential element of the strategy and roadmap is to strengthen the SME ecosystem and scale successful projects that demonstrated mechanisms to engage SMEs in skills development. This panel will explore mechanisms and best practices of SME upskilling. What can we learn from good practices and how could these be scaled up? How do we optimize the ecosystems that help SMEs flourish?

14:00 – 15:15 Panel discussion
Moderator: Sebastiano Toffaletti, Secretary-General European DIGITAL SME Alliance
Dave Feenan, Network Manager at Technology Ireland ICT Skillnet
Sanna-Mari Jäntti, Director Strategic Projects, City of Helsinki
Morena Diazzi, Director-General of the Emilia-Romagna Regional Government for Knowledge, Labour and Enterprise Economy
Paul Gisby, Senior Manager at Accountancy Europe
15:15 – 15:30 Coffee break
Tailoring education and training to SMEs’ needs

This session focuses on the urgency to tailor education and training with SMEs’ needs and to overcome existing barriers preventing SMEs from developing the necessary skills to adopt new technologies. This requires strengthening the collaboration between education and industry, tackling financial constraints, and exploring new forms of education.

15:30 – 16:30 Panel discussion
Moderator: Annemieke van Barneveld-Biesma, Principal Consultant, Technopolis
Timo Kos, Director Education and Student Affairs, Technical University Delft, and Director of Innovation, LDE Centre for Education and Learning
Tanya Suarez, LLB (HONS) and PhD candidate in ICT – IoT Tribe, Founder – BluSpecs, CEO – AIOTI, Board Member
Ernestina Menasalvas, Professor University of Madrid, Lead of Big Data Value Association Task Force 9: Skills and Education
Giulio Soro, EMEA Head of Machine Learning/ AI Solutions Lab, Amazon Web Services
 Way forward

This session will conclude the conference and summarise the key actions to be taken by the European Commission and by industry itself.

16:30 – 17:00 Concluding Remarks and the way forward André Richier, Principal policy officer, DG Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, European Commission
Nineta Polemi, Policy officer Cyber Security, Technologies and Capacity Building, DG CONNECT, European Commission
Niels van der Linden, Principal consultant at Capgemini Invent
17:00 – 18:00 DRINKS and NETWORKING

This action is financed by the COSME Programme.