EUROPEAN REVIEW

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ISSUE 62 page 8

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Sites of Interest
900,000 vacancies expected in ICT; how can women fill the gap?
 THE EUROPEAN COMMISSION IS SO CONVINCED THAT the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) field is going to be the biggest generator of new jobs as the EU recovers from the economic slump that it has launched a Grand Coalition for digital jobs. Commission President Barroso revealed that technology companies, governments, educators and social partners had already been asked for pledges on training, mobility, certification, publicity, learning and teaching in ICT so that the estimated 100,000 new jobs per year can be matched with candidates with the appropriate higher skills in the field. ‘We want to empower Europeans to fill the jobs that will drive the next ICT revolution’ he stressed. Not enough graduates
in science, technology, engineering and mathematics are being produced particularly female ones. Commissioner for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes views the ICT vacancies as a golden opportunity for women to close the gender pay gap as they make up less than 30% of the current workforce even though they are paid 9% more, on average, than women in other industries. She wants to know about bright ideas to encourage women to apply and cites the AcademyCube project from Germany which brings together leading companies, job seekers and academics and the Finnish Rails Girls project which holds learn programming weekends for girls. On her blog Commissioner Kroes has contributed an online cartoon in which she appears as a champion of women’s employment in ICT

The first frame from ‘Neelie and the Clikkers’

 

 

 Web sites mentioned on this page are available at:
 Neelie Kroes’s blog on women in ICT
 ITF news page on new apps
App developers fear new data protection law
 AS THE EU LEGISLATIVE MACHINE grinds ever closer to a new data protection directive the digital industry is beginning to wake up to the possible implications. Designers of web applications or apps, which are increasingly used on mobile devices to play games, make purchases or even to guide your car, are increasingly worried that they are in the firing line. An EU committee of experts known as ‘article 13’ recently specifically mentioned mobile apps as worthy of special guidance when advising the European Commission. At the recent Mobile World Congress in Barcelona over 15,000 delegates focused on geo-location, the means by which apps find out where the user is, as a likely candidate for regulation. But Harri Koponen of Rovio who produce the popular ‘Angry Birds’ app, says ‘We do not use the location of the equipment to sell anything to the user, but to guarantee a minimum downloading speed’. In 2010 the ‘Wall Street Journal’ reported that 47 out of 101 apps that it examined transmitted the user’s location while 56 sent out a unique reference for the handset and 5 provided personal details such as gender and age to third parties. 45 included no privacy policy and it is for this reason that the Canadian government is currently prosecuting Delta Airlines over its app.

 angrybirds
The ‘Angry Birds’ app logo

 

Union federation launches new seafarers’ apps

THE INTERNATIONAL TRANSPORT FEDERATION (ITF) has ushered in the age of the app for seafarers with the launch of a series of web applications to smooth the path of members who may be far from home. ‘Look up a Ship’ will enable them to find details of any union agreement, latest inspection and crew list for any vessel on which they are sailing or intend to sail. ‘Find an Inspector/Union’ provides contact numbers for the nearest ITF inspector or union branch as well as the ‘SeafarerHelp’ line. Lastly clicking on ‘Shore Leave’ will put mariners in port in touch with the nearest seafarers’ centre and give tips on transport to the nearest city etc. All the apps are available for both Android and iPhones while ‘Shore Leave’ is also on the iPad and the BlackBerry. Once downloaded they should work without an Internet connection.

 
Icons for the seafarers’ apps




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