NET-Generation// NET Economy

Leonardo 2000 project summary

by Paolo Manzelli


-- Analysis of needs - State of the art - Proposal motivation

The possibility of starting in EU countries a sustainable process of development of the new digital economy capable of providing significant competitive advantages mainly, even if not exclusively, depends on the overcoming of two obstacles concerning the relation between the structural reform of education and employment processes:

a) shortage of skilled personnel having the competence needed for covering the necessary professional position and roles in the enterprises and in the system for the advancement the electronic market;

b) lack of attitude towards promoting and maintaining partnership networks, towards using telecommunication and information techniques in order to deal effectively with the new dimension of the global market for developing e-europe (see:

In order to contribute to the removal of these obstacles, whose nature is both cognitive and related to the characteristics of the training systems, the project "net-generation// net-economy", aims at devising and testing the educational programs and didactic materials. Those programs are necessary for training innovative professional profiles of "knowledge workers", capable to play a role fulfilling the requirements of the electronic market. This objective will be achieved on the basis of a research that will be carried out using both traditional (surveys, interviews to expert informants) and innovative tools. (educational research, integrated by the reworking of the collected materials, on the WWW) Moreover, the project aims at singling out ways to integrate these innovative professional programs and didactic resources with the educational systems currently established in the various countries participating at the project.

2. Outcomes, including dissemination methods:

1- Definition of professional keys profiles of "knowledge workers", (competence, role and curricula) of net-digital-economy in agreement with all partners .This "knowledge workers" profiles , on the basis of results of previous research and analysis, are not yet incorporated in operative training programs, but can be classified as following:

a)" info-broker"; this is the less qualified profession. He has skills in carrying out research on interesting subjects for the business area of the enterprise in which he is employed, or for those enterprises he has as clients if he work as a free lance professional. He has conspicuous skills in researching information on the net, in reworking and disseminating that information;

b)"content provider", planner of activities in the business area of the organisation in which he/she is employed. He has conspicuous skills in analysing information in order to single out business opportunities or undertake activities. He also has skills in formalising ideas in projects fore seen of business plan, budget and concrete action plans;

c) "e-buyer"; this is the more specialised profession in the e-commerce field and also the less bounded to the digital network, although he is still an intensive user of it.

Functions of this profession are: creating, administrating, co-ordinating partnerships at global level, conducting and concluding commercial negotiations. He has noticeable managerial skills. These are professions that complement each other in a work team , that operates for e-commerce development. Professional profiles, access requirements, training programs, detailed curricula and training methodologies will be defined by the project as a result of the educational research carried out by partners schools. The reworking of results will be a joint activity of all project partners

2- Experimentation of educational units and modules and testing of didactic materials in three different classes of the participating schools (average age from the students: from 15 to 18), and in selected groups of entrepreneurs of the trade sector in Italy; in selected groups of entrepreneurs in the other countries; This is followed by revision and tune up of the training modules;

3- Publishing of educational material in multimedia format on digital supports (CD, DVD, WEB), in the languages of the partners countries

4 - .The experimentation will also concern the knowledge management "cross-fertility" of the university-school-enterprise european partnership . This by means of the creation of portals for specific sectors of economic activity, done by partners involved in the project.

3. Partnership

The partnership is made up by co-operation of (6) EU countries and 1country in the pre-accession phase. The group of organisation that developed the proposal includes: PIN (proposer) and LRE (co-ordinator).

Other Italian partners will help developing the products and managing the experimentation with the enterprises; a network of (12 ) Italian schools will carry out the educational research phase and the experimentation of the didactic modules and testing of didactic materials.. Partners from the EU and non-EU countries will co-operate in developing the products and adapting them to the specific needs of their countries. They will also co-operate in experimenting units and modules.

4. Project management and operational timetable:

The project leader will be "PIN of Prato" that is a non profit organisation co-participated by public institutions (such as the "University of Florence" the Municipality and Province of Prato). Pin of Prato provides the University of Florence with educational and scientific services within the metropolitan area Florence/Prato/Pistoia.

LRE (Laboratory for Educational Research) of the University of Florence will act as project co-ordinator as an expert for education research and in the field of knowledge management for e-commerce . Besides, a "Network of School-partners" It will be composed by secondary schools.

The project will be spread with specific dissemination measures in internet Activities envisaged by the project:

a) 1°month: 1° transnational meeting for starting-up the project

b) 2-20 months : Networking activities in order to establish a network operating among the different partners and participating to the project.
This phase, running over the whole project, aims to the developing of educational modules suitable for transnational diffusion

c) 2-5 months: research on new-economy professions , conducted by means of interviews to informative experts and by statistical survey

d) 3-6: months educational research in the partner schools, collection of materials, reworking and arrangement of the collected materials by the schools;

e) 6-9 months: reworking of the collected materials by the universities and other subjects participating to the project. A tentative for definition of professional profiles and first hypothesis on related training curricula; second transnational meeting devoted to comparison of results emerged among the participating countries; at the same time the first conference will be held;

f) 9-16 months: prosecution of educational research in partner schools; definition of professional profiles and second hypothesis on related training curricula; third transnational meeting devoted to:-comparison of results emerged among the participating countries -definition of educational packages implementation;

g) 16-20 months: editing of didactic packages;

h) 21-30 months: fourth transnational meeting in order to: prepare the experimentation phase; - test of educational modules. This test should be carried out by the partner schools as an educational path along the year. In the meanwhile these packages will be tested (as single modules) in different (profit) institutions in order to achieve an improvement of skills in the field of e-business and to test the flexibility of didactic resources. At the end of this phase a fifth transnational meeting will be carried out with the aim to evaluate experience gained and singling out guides for revision and final tune-up of educational modules;

i) 31-35 months: revision of education modules, editing of the final products;

j) 32-36 months Studies and research for transferability of the developed model in EU countries, that are not participating at the project . A sixth trans-national (final) congress, open to schools or other economic subjects not involved in the project

k) continuous activities will be: running of the dedicated web sites, forums, discussion groups, chat-lines, in internet.