Strategic Development of Serbian Citizens’ Digital Skills

Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development
Describe the main features of the policy/measure: 
The Measure ensures greater accessibility to culture and cultural industries’ products and services in a digital environment for all citizens, especially to vulnerable categories and citizens of less developed areas, as well as the development of potentials, i.e. of the production staff in these fields. The Measure is defined by the Strategy for Digital Skills Development in the Republic of Serbia for 2020–2024 (Official Gazette of the RS, issue 21/2020) and adopted by the same document in March 2020. This is the Government’s national strategic program aimed at regulating the development of the population's digital skills, in order to fully use the potentials of contemporary information and communications technologies. The goal is to improve the quality of life for all citizens and to raise employment, work efficiency, and the economic growth of the society. Digital skills are defined as possessing the appropriate knowledge, skills, and behaviors, in accordance with individual and social needs in the 21st century, a time of rapid development of ICT. The general goal of the Strategy is the improvement of digital knowledge and skills of all citizens, including members of vulnerable social groups, to enable them to use information and communications technologies in all areas and to meet the needs of the economy and labor market. The indicator at the level of general objective is the number of citizens with improved digital skills, the base value being 34.2% of computer-literate persons and 14.8% of partially computer-literate persons. The target value in 2024 is 46.2 % of computer-literate persons and 26.8% partially computer-literate persons. The Strategy includes the following specific objectives: – Improving digital competencies in the education system. The indicator is the number of schools teaching digital competencies and the number of students possessing digital competencies. The base value in 2018: 55 high-schools have IT classes; the target value in 2024: the number of school having IT classes raised by 20%. - Improving elementary and advanced digital skills of all citizens. As many citizens as possible should be included in various trainings for acquiring basic digital skills, and special attention should be paid to the elderly and those living in areas with fewer users of information and communications technologies (e.g. rural areas and smaller urban environments). Indicator at the level of the specific objective is the percentage of computer-illiterate persons. The base value in 2018: 51% of computer-illiterate persons; target value in 2024: 27% of computer-illiterate persons. - Developing digital skills in response to labor market demands. This objective implies training programs in digital skills, linked to the effective use of technology and entrepreneurial/business skills propelling, among other things, development of digital technologies. Indicator at the level of specific objective is the number of persons included in digital skills trainings. Base value in 2018: 1000 persons having passed specialist IT trainings; target value in 2024: 1200 persons having passed specialist IT training. - ICT professionals’ life-long learning. Enabling ICT experts in institutions of higher education to follow the rapid progress of the ICT sector, exchange knowledge and experiences with colleagues, etc. Indicator at the level of the specific objective is the number of enrolled students. Bae value in 2018: 20,908 enrolled male students and 5,725 enrolled female students; target value in 2024: annual growth of 5% enrolled male students and 10% of enrolled female students. One of the activities envisaged by the Strategy is improving the central communication infrastructure and building a local wireless communication infrastructure (WLAN) in educational institutions, including pre-school and cultural institutions.
What are the results achieved so far through the implementation of the policy/measure?: 
- Conducting trainings for the development of digital skills of the population during 2020 has been greatly hindered due to the consequences of the crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. - According to the data of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development, in the school year 2020/2021, there were 44 IT classes in 36 high schools throughout Serbia, having in total more than 800 students. Thanks to their competencies, these students will be ready to become parts of innovative startup companies immediately after graduating. Students that graduated from IT high-school classes have already successfully tested their knowledge, skills and attitudes in job vacancies announced by telecommunications companies. They have also achieved great success in web design and creating of mobile phones applications. - Capital project Development of Infrastructure in Institutions of Education, Science and Culture “Connected Schools” proposes comprehensive improvement of the information and communications infrastructure in schools in the Republic of Serbia. The goals of the project are overcoming and preventing digital gap and raising digital literacy, achieving competitiveness of young generations in the digital era and ensuring growth bases for the IT industry. The Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunication is in charge of building infrastructures, i.e. wireless computer networks and upgrading the equipment of the Academic Network of Serbia. The Ministry of Education, Science and Technologic Development is implementing digital classrooms program, i.e. supplying schools with appropriate computer equipment and digital teaching content. By the end of 2020, wireless computer networks were deployed in about 930 school facilities (a half of those planned by the project).
Partner(s) engaged in the implementation of the measure: 
Name of partnerType of entity
Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development, Ministry of Culture and Information, Ministry of Labor and Social Policies, Ministry of Public Administration and Local Self-Government, National Academy for Public Administration
Public Sector
Institutions relevant for the envisaged measures and activities, education institutions, private sector and civil society
Objetivo(s) de la Convención 2005 de la UNESCO
Cultural Domain(s)