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Transferable Skills in Malta: Challenges and Policy Recommendations

Transferable skills are internationally acknowledged as an important tool to reduce the friction generated through skills mismatch between education and the labour market. This paper examines some challenging aspects of transferable skills that may reduce their effectiveness, such as their unclear definition and delineation, difficulties in translating policy into practice, and the challenge of convincing employers to invest in such skills. While over the years, elements of transferable skills were added to the Maltese educational curriculum, the country requires a comprehensive policy that tackles the barriers hindering the dissemination of transferable skills. This paper proposes the adoption of a comprehensive skills policy that includes a focus on demand and supply skills audit research, the revision and development of curriculum and teaching methods, the training of stakeholders, and quality assurance, assessment and recognition of transferable skills.


Manwel Debono is Senior Lecturer and Chartered Occupational Psychologist at the University of Malta, and a former director of its Centre for Labour Studies. He has been involved in numerous local and European research projects dealing with industrial relations and working conditions. He is a veteran contributor to both the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions and the European Employment Policy Observatory. His research interests include industrial relations, working conditions, human resources and career development.

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Manwel Debono
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