No. 78 / May 2008 HOME minjk@kli.re.kr  
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  Issue Paper
Policies and Tasks for Life-long Career Skills Development
Jooseop Kim
Research Fellow, Korea Labor Institute

 Skills-oriented technology development, knowledge-base industry, and globalization are the buzz words that characterize the evolution of todays economic and social environment, which adds higher premium to skills, which in turn leads to the further polarization based on the knowledge levels as generally forecasted. While higher levels of skills for job performance are required, the lifespan of technologies has shortened quite dramatically thanks to the on-going technology innovation. All such rapid changes require not only individuals but also countries to be better prepared to respond. This is not limited to Korea. All the other advanced countries that have experienced rapid advance of technologies are required to come up with a thorough plan to respond to the changes.
 Drawing most attention in this environment of rapid change is the policy for the development and reinforcement of life-long career. The education during the school-age years is not enough to ensure that a person is fully equipped with the sufficient career skills to cover ones life span and in addition, the number of years during which the knowledge picked up during those school-age years is utilized in the industrial field is getting shorter than ever. There is no denying of the fact that the policies need to be set up to reinforce the education and training following the regular school years education.

* This paper was originally published in Korean in the 40th issue of the Monthly Labor Review published by the Korea Labor Institute in April 2008.
* The author welcome any use of this material provided the source
is acknowledged. Nothing written here is to be construed as necessarily reflecting the views of the Korea Labor Institute.
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