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European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency
News article16 June 2021European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency2 min read

Aquaculture and tourism in the Mediterranean area. The digital transformation challenge

The June 9 webinar, dedicated to the competences needed in these sectors and including the presentation of Sea of Experience and Nautilus projects, is online

Digitalization skills. Aquaculture and tourism. Mediterranean. Webinar

With the digital transformation, new needs arise in key sectors depending on marine resources and their responsible use.

New competencies and educational programmes play - once again - an important role and the knowledge challenges for the blue economy have been acknowledged by the 42 Member Countries of the Union for the Mediterranean, that adopted their second Ministerial Declaration on Sustainable Blue Economy on the 2 February 2021.

As part of the political mandate to cooperate closely and address joint challenges in the promotion of blue skills, careers and employment, the UfM countries agreed “to prioritize education, vocational training and scientific capacity to reduce the mismatch between the skills of the labour force and the evolving needs of industry”.

On the 9th June 2021, the Union for the Mediterranean and the WestMED Initiative co-organized a 4-hour webinar entitled “Digitalization skills in the aquaculture and tourism sectors in the Mediterranean region”. 

The initiative was an occasion to provide an overview of the state-of-the-art and the needs in the area of digital skills, with a focus on the sectors of aquaculture and tourism. 

In summary, the webinar intended to:

  • briefly introduce current applications/efforts in terms of digitalization within the blue economy in the Mediterranean region;
  • showcase concrete examples of digitalization in two key sectors, namely aquaculture and tourism;
  • discuss and identify present and future needs, in order to support the attainment of suitable skills and competencies. 

For those who missed the live stream, the whole webinar is available on the Union for the Mediterranean's YouTube channel.

Furthermore, we are glad to highlight that two of our blue careers EMFF projects were featured during the event: Sea of Experience and Nautilus. 

Sea of Experience aims at establishing a training and mentorship programme for young professionals living in the Eastern Mediterranean basin who are interested in the blue economy: maritime transport, ship building and repair, ports and the cruise industry. The project addresses the lack of a comprehensive “skills ecosystem” for professionals in the selected sectors by developing the Sharing Pooling E-platform, a space providing educational, training and mentoring tools like a digital repository, videos of workplaces, chatting app, digital competitions, training tools and forums where students can interact with their classmates and project mentors. 

The purpose of Nautilus project is to produce a training and professional qualification framework for the upskilling of water sports tourism (WST) professionals. It focuses on mapping the educational and training offer and the learning needs of the WST professionals, developing the tools for a better learning experience (methodology, training modules, online platform) and building a reliable Qualification and Certification framework. The final step consists in testing the system in real life conditions and create the first certified Water Sports Tourism professionals. The NAUTILUS educational programme will be implemented in three pilot training academies in Greece, Turkey and Italy during 2021-2022.