Transforming Portugal’s Labour Landscape: The SYNCLUSIVE Project’s Living Labs

Portugal faces intricate challenges in its labor market, particularly concerning youth employment. The generational gap is evident, compounded by a lack of work experience, educational disparities, and a mismatch between skills and labour market demands. The SYNCLUSIVE project, through Living Labs, is set to revolutionize this landscape by addressing these barriers and fostering collaboration among various stakeholders.

The Living Labs initiative targets specific issues. It identifies market demands and provides tailored training to young individuals, bridging the gap between education and employment. By partnering with associations, it offers crucial work experience to combat the lack of practical skills. The initiative also delivers qualifications through courses, preparing participants for the job market and facilitating their entry.

Four Living Labs will be established in strategic locations: Lisbon, Évora, Lagoa, and a Digital Living Lab. The geographical diversity aims to cater to a broad spectrum of young individuals with distinct employment needs. The Digital Living Lab, especially, ensures inclusivity by being accessible online, reflecting the project’s commitment to an inclusive strategy.

The Digital Living Lab, integral to national education and vocational training, emphasizes a participant-oriented learning environment. Rede do Empresário (REDO) plays a vital role in its development, fostering collaboration between academia, industry, and government. Through courses, mentoring, and participation in projects, participants gain digital skills, enabling them to actively shape their learning journey.

The Lisbon Living Lab, situated within the Audax Ecosystem (ISCTE’s Start Up Hub), immerses participants in a vibrant entrepreneurial habitat. This dynamic environment provides opportunities for learning, networking, and collaboration with startups, contributing to a holistic educational experience. ISCTE Sintra’s programming courses will further enhance this innovative initiative.

In Évora, the Living Lab partners with PACT, Alentejo’s Park of Science and Technology, fostering innovation through collaboration between academia, startups, and enterprises. The Lagoa Living Lab, hosted by Lagoa’s City Hall, establishes a close relationship between participants and public entities, creating a unique learning environment.

IEFP (the national Institute for Employment and Professional Training) is a public institute that operates under the Ministry of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security. They’re partners of the SYNCLUSIVE project, and they play a crucial role in implementing labor market policies and supporting both job seekers and employers.

Lastly, TermCerto is an enterprise that recruits employees for temporary work across various sectors and industries. It is a partner of the SYNCLUSIVE project and will participate in connecting the Living Lab job seekers to employers, contributing to bridge the gap of youth unemployment.

SYNCLYSIVES’s Living Labs initiative not only tackles Portugal’s complex labour challenges but also emphasizes scalability and inclusivity. By empowering the youth with relevant skills, work experience, and qualifications, it propels them into the job market, contributing to a more vibrant and resilient Portuguese workforce. As the Living Labs unfold, they embody a transformative approach towards sustainable employment solutions in Portugal.