Think Big exceeds Grand Coalition pledge of boosting ICT skills in Europe

Telefonica’s initiative to support young people in Europe, Think Big, has surpassed its ICT skills pledge by over 1,300 participants to help decrease digital skills gap across the continent.

21 January 2014: Since the announcement of the Grand Coalition in March, 2013 at DAVOS, our commitment to boosting digital skills and jobs creation in the European ICT sector has been significant. Our pledge was to have 7,000 people actively participate in our Think Big Schools programme. This involved young people aged 14 to 18 practising the principles of entrepreneurship by creating and expressing themselves on digital platforms. They were introduced to coding by Thimble Webmaker, a Mozilla tool, which complimented the direct mentoring they received from our business mentors.

We educated 7,764 young people across Europe who participated in our Think Big Schools programme.

During Campus Party 2013 – the world’s largest digital entertainment event – Think Big along with Mozilla and 15 other digital partners ran the Make the Web zone, which added a further 450 participants.

Combine that amount with those who participated in our magazine competition (Heat Hack) running throughout October, 2013 and we not only reached our Grand Coalition pledge of 7,000 but surpassed it with a grand total of 8,314.

Our Digital Goal

Telefonica will be playing a significant role at this year’s DAVOS where we’ll be reporting back on our overall impact, involving other related initiatives, including Wayra and Talentum.

In regards to Think Big, the impact made thus far has been significant but the demand for skilled ICT workers across the continent is far greater. To that end, and in-line with our Grand Coalition pledge, our intention is to have impacted 50,000 young Europeans by 2015.

We also have a number of upcoming developments that will help in our mission to get Europe’s youth thinking like makers as opposed to consumers of the web:

Think Big’s Digital curriculum

We’ll be bridging generational, gender and geographic gap by providing a pan-European online learning platform to teach young people digital skills; in particular, those around coding. This curriculum will go through all our youth programmes as well as being integrate with our employee learning platform and offered to anyone via the web.

One Young World partnership

Working on close coordination with Wayra in Dublin, Europe’s startup capital to bring the digital skills and open innovation to young people from over 190 nations and showing Europe as a central point of innovation.

Telefonica’s Millennial Survey

Building on the 2013 survey to gain further insights for young people to help shape debate  and participation in the digital economy.