VET and HRD research in European countries > Overview

Ireland  []  Summary

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Research in Ireland is concentrated in the following areas - skills developments and employment forecasting, the evaluation of publicly-funded education and training programmes, collection and analysis of statistics on training and other policy-oriented research into particular groups. The main organisations involved are FÁS-Training and Employment Authority and the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs.

There is some research undertaken in the area of education and training, with the emphasis on education (access and curricular issues), and on qualifications. With the establishment of the National Qualifications Framework in 2003, emphasis is now on importing existing courses into the various levels of the framework and on promoting the mobility of learners through the mutual recognition of awards.

Work organisation and national competitiveness are other areas with a marginal relation to vocational training, the National Council for Partnership and Performance directing most of this area of research. Little research is undertaken on training pedagogy issues, though work has been ongoing on curricular issues regarding educational provision for migrants.

Research in Ireland is focused in general on policy rather than practice and the intention is to support Government decision-making on programmes and allocation of resources. It is also focused on ensuring that the VET system provides the skills required by the country for future economic and social development. 

There are no networks of VET researchers in Ireland, though a seminar held on the eve of the ECER 2005 Dublin Conference and attended by Irish and European employment/VET experts, aimed to stimulate interest in the field. As regards participation in research programmes, organisations have taken part in Leonardo programmes as partners but have not taken the lead or co-ordinating role in any of the Research Material, Procedure C strand projects. There has been limited involvement with the TSER programme by the Employment Research Centre of Trinity College Dublin.

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Source: Cedefop - National Research Report Ireland (details see Bibliography)
Editor: Sabine Manning  © WIFO