Strengthening digital human capital

The Strengthening Digital Human Capital Zone works to develop digital skills in higher education with a focus on the digital transformation so that students are trained to become in-demand professionals and in-work professionals can continue to grow.

Society is changing rapidly due to the ongoing digital transformation. As a result, the expectations and demands of employers – but also of society – are changing too. This zone asks the professional field and the education sector at large: what is needed to train students and professionals to become digitally skilled professionals? The aim is to equip them for new professions where they will be able to contribute to solving  various problems where the digital transformation plays a role.

Education will be better placed to respond to (digital) developments in society by better preparing students and professionals for these developments. The need to solve issues ensuing from the digital transformation at both universities of applied sciences and research universities has increased. We see a growing awareness of the importance of connecting with digital social issues, because the digital transformation touches everyone’s lives. Take data-driven working in healthcare, for example, or ethical discussions about the use of facial recognition by law enforcement agencies.

We are here to support higher education institutions that:

  • want to develop their digital human capital;
  • want to contribute to digitally skilled students on the labour market and in society;
  • recognise that lifelong digital talent development for graduates and professionals is a necessity.

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Read the latest news of the Human capital zone

About zone

Caroline tells you about the name change of the zone (formerly Connection to the labor market), the need to strengthen digital human capital and the plans.

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What are digital skills?

Digital skills in the context of the zone is about the interaction of the graduates with digital information. Can you digitally find the information you are looking for? Can you assess the quality of the digital information found? By including digital skills in the curricula, we prepare students more adequately for the rapidly changing labor market and can contribute to solving social issues. This concerns both ICT knowledge and skills in specific subjects and skills that students acquire as digital wisdom.

The need for digital skills therefore differs per study programme, profession or sector. That is why the zone focuses on securing future-proof skills.

You can transfer these skills from profession to profession, and function to function, and the graduates themselves are able to take those skills with them and apply them in the new context. Digital skills are therefore about much more than just being able to work with software or knowing how to start or shut down a device.

We strive for a continuous connection between education and society. You can transfer future-proof digital skills from profession to profession, and function to function. The result are students, alumni and employees who are digitally skilled and prepared for a digital society.

Podcast: on the importance of digital skills (Dutch only)

What is needed to train students and professionals to become digital skilled professionals? In this podcast series, the zone goes into the importance of digital skills and developing them in the higher education. 

What does it bring?

The Acceleration Plan is for and by higher education. Learning and development is done together with fellow colleges and universities. In doing so, the strengths and available knowledge are bundled. Higher education institutions are able to translate needs in the field of digitization of the labor market into education for current and new target groups. Connecting with regular education to what students have learned.

We are working as a zone to ensure that this happens even more, even better, and even more often. The changing labor market also requires a critical look at the content of the curricula and attainment targets. By including digitization in the curricula, we prepare students more adequately for the rapidly digitizing labor market.

The zone’s work focuses, among other things, on future-proof competency profiles, hybrid learning environments, connection with stakeholders and the development and collection of tools. We work together with students, lecturers, education developers, education directors and the labor market. In addition, we focus on the importance of working on digital human capital in strategic plans of educational institutions and in curricula and educational models. The zone works in an ‘open collective circle’: a team consisting of a delegation from various colleges and universities. The team works closely with outside input, such as the AI ​​Coalition, various Human Capital Agendas and the Groeifonds. There is also currently a close collaboration with I-Partnerschap. In this way we work together in terms of content and strengthen each other at meetings that we organise.

If you have any questions about the Human Capital zone, please contact:

Caroline van de Molen     

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