Facebook to create three new European digital skills hubs

Lawrence Kim
January 22, 2018

The three new community hubs will run in partnership with local organisations, offering training in digital skills, media literacy and online safety to underrepresented groups, said Facebook, adding that the centres will be based on the successful model of its Digitales Lernzentrum in Berlin, which opened a year ago in partnership with the ReDI School of Digital Integration.

Trying again to rehabilitate its reputation in Europe, Facebook today announced a wide-ranging training program to help small businesses and provide individuals with critical digital skills.

Facebook has also committed to training one million people including business owners before the start of 2020.

"Today we're announcing a program to help European Union businesses grow and to equip more people in the European Union with the digital skills they need to compete in today's workplace", Facebook said in a press release.

Google, Microsoft and Amazon have also ramped up efforts to get more people into digital skills training, with fears that many are being left behind and leaving a skills gap for businesses when hiring. These will run in partnership with local organisations, offering training in digital skills, media literacy and online safety to underrepresented groups - including the elderly, refugees, and others that may find it hard to get this training otherwise.

"All training will be tailored to each person, so someone with very strong skills could be taught how to code, while others might learn how to open a bank account online", Ciaran Quilty, Vice President, Small Businesses, EMEA, said in a statement. Since 2011, it has invested more than $1bn in small businesses globally.

Additionally, as part of Facebook's #SheMeansBusiness program, more than 15,000 women in France will receive entrepreneurship-focused training.

Facebook first opened the research centre in 2015 and has since chosen France to locate its "startup garage" incubator.

Lastly, Facebook announced €10 million will be poured into France to accelerate AI innovation. The tech giant will also invest €10 million in its existing Paris-based AI research centre.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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