The Mayor of London has announced a £5m investment programme in teaching young Londoners the essential digital skills required to keep the capital at the forefront of technological innovation.
Boris Johnson said it was “absolutely vital” to nurture London’s tech stars of the future and helping them gain employment within the digital technology industry.
The initiative, in partnership with the London Enterprise Panel (LEP), aims to establish a London Digital Talent Pipeline to help schools and colleges to rework their curriculums to meet the requirements of tech employers. Students aged between 14 and 24 will be taught skill sets as defined by these employers.
London’s technological workforce is predicted to grow by 30pc between 2012 and 2022, equating to some 274,000 workers. The capital is expected to play host to around 51,500 digital technology companies by 2025 – up from the current figure of around 40,000 businesses.
The programme will also oversee the creation of five digital learning hubs designed to train participants, an increase in the number of places for those aged 16 and over in colleges to encourage learning through industry-designed courses, and will be accompanied by an awareness campaign.
Mr Johnson, who is also chairman of the LEP, said: “London is a hotbed of top technological innovation, brimming with creative minds who are helping to boost the capital’s economy and that of the whole country.
“However, it is absolutely vital that we nurture our tech stars of the future and make sure that our deep reserves of talent do not run dry. This new scheme will help London to remain ahead of the game when it comes to tech and give thousands of young Londoners the chance to share in the city’s economic success.”
The Mayor said he also wanted to encourage more women to take up jobs within the tech industry, as women account for only one third of the workforce currently.
A fund to finance budding tech start-ups with an initial investment of £25m was launched last December.
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