02 SES 16 C, Skills Formation
Labour markets are becoming increasingly international, yet Vocational Education and Training (VET) systems remain national. The unprecedented intra-European East-West migration flows imply new challenges for VET-systems, potentially altering hiring practices, provision of apprenticeships as well as students’ preferences. Yet, analyses of the mechanisms, effects and policy responses are largely lacking in the literature. The topic of this paper is how mass skilled emigration and low-skilled immigration affects training companies’ loyalty to the VET system in Poland. We investigate the attitudes of employers towards contributing to formal vocational education by providing in-company apprenticeship training. The paper draws on Hirschman’s (1970) analytical model of exit, voice and loyalty, in this context, used to conceptualise the relationship between training companies and the nation state represented by educational authorities. When faced with mass skilled emigration, companies might withdraw from the system, and find other training and recruitment options (exit); attempt to improve the conditions by expressing their concerns to policy-makers (voice), and/or remain loyal to the VET-system by maintaining or even raising training investments. Poland represents a suited case, being one of the biggest sending countries of skilled labour (Fihel, Kaczmarczyk 2009). Since the EU-enlargement in 2004, every fifth person aged 25-34 has left Poland on a long term, and the stock of all Polish emigrants is estimated at 2.4 million in 2015. Concurrently, Poland is becoming a destination country for immigrants, largely from Ukraine and Belarus (Chmielewska, Dobroczek, Puzynkiewicz 2016). After years of inattention, the Polish VET-system has recently been regaining a strong position (Chłoń-Domińczak, Dębowski et al. 2011), supported by policies and funds from the EU (Dębowski, Stęchły 2015). Drawing on interviews with decision makers, VET school principals and employers in a selection of training companies within sectors exposed to skill emigration and immigration, and analysis of companies’ training activity and provision of apprenticeships using national statistics, we find that companies largely remain loyal to the VET system, because few other options appear feasible (on short term), however not without voicing up. The findings are in line with the theoretical assumptions of Hirschman; the less the availability of exit, the more likely voice will be used. We expect to find differences between the various labour market sectors along the lines of VET tradition, exposure to skills emigration, and access to new trainees, external unskilled and skilled staff, and external staff with higher education
Chłoń-Domińczak, A. et al. (2012). Edukacja zawodowa w Polsce [Vocational education in Poland]. In A. Wojciuk, M. Fedorowicz (Eds.), Raport o stanie edukacji 2011. Kontynuacja przemian [Report on the state of education in 2011. Continuing reforms] (p. 169-249). Warsaw: Educational Research Institute. Chmielewska I., Dobroczek G., Puzynkiewicz, J. (2016) Obywatele Ukrainy pracujący w Polsce – raport z badania. Narodowy Bank Polski. Dębowski, H., & Stęchły, W. (2015). Implementing ECVET Principles. Reforming Poland's Vocational Education and Training through Learning Outcomes Based Curricula and Assessment. Warsaw Forum of Economic Sociology 6:2(12) Autumn 2015. Fihel, A. & Kaczmarczyk, P. (2009). Migration: A threat or a chance? Recent migration of Poles and its impact on the Polish labour market. In Burrell, K. (ed.), Polish Migration to the UK in the 'New' European Union: After 2004. London/New York: Routledge. Hirschman, A.O. (1970). Exit, Voice, and Loyalty: Responses to Decline in Firms, Organizations, and States. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
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Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
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