Skilling Australians: Lessons from World War II national workforce development programs
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Governments are currently mobilising their national workforces to compete effectively in a globalised economy where being export-effective and import-competitive are necessary to secure national economic and social goals. Australia is no exception here. Yet, in this country, as in others, similar mobilisations occurred in earlier times, most noticeably during wartime. This article describes and discusses two particular measures during and after the Second World War: the Commonwealth Technical Training Scheme and the Commonwealth Reconstruction Training Scheme. Beyond providing an historical account of these two national schemes for skilling Australians, the paper identifies the importance of securing a national consensus and the engagement of all parties, and showing sensitivity towards those who participate in such programs. Particularly salient is that although national-focussed, the success of these programs was premised on effective localised arrangements, where diligent administrators and educators seemingly worked closely with local employers and unions to realise their effective implementation.
Australian Journal of Adult Learning
Copyright 2010 Adult Learning Australia. The attached file is reproduced here in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal link for access to the definitive, published version.
Education not elsewhere classified