Back to top

13th SHARE Policy Dialogue: ASEAN, EU Continue Support to Enhance Graduate Employability in ASEAN



Jakarta, (11/25) 2021 The European Union Support to Higher Education in ASEAN Region (SHARE) Programme held its 13th Policy Dialogue Webinar Series on 23 - 25 November 2021. Focusing on “University and Employer Engagement to Enhance Graduate Employability in ASEAN,” the series brought together alumni, higher education and private sector representatives to discuss strategies to enhance graduate employability in ASEAN.


Ensuring cohesion between higher education and employment through a continuum of learning is vital to ensure that ASEAN graduates are able to harness their potential in contributing to the labour market and eventually contributing to advancing the socio-economic progress of ASEAN. The SHARE Programme is supporting this through strengthening the cooperation and coordination between various regional stakeholders.


The 13th SHARE Policy Dialogue was officially launched by the Ambassador of the EU to ASEAN, H.E. Igor Driesmans, Deputy Secretary-General (DSG) of ASEAN for ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community, H.E. Ekkaphab Phanthavong, and SHARE Programme Team Leader Darren McDermott, on Tuesday, 23 November 2021.


In his opening remarks, Ambassador Igor Driesmans stated, “Education and training has been one of the hardest hit sectors during the pandemic. More than 90% of the world’s students were unable to attend school at the height of the health crisis. In this context, improving graduate employability has become even more important. That’s why we need to improve partnerships between higher education institutions and the private sector in the region.”


Cognisant of the evolving demands of labour market and the urgency  to transform education system to address skills gap, Deputy Secretary General Ekkaphab Phanthavong emphasised that “University and employer engagement is not just an option, but a necessity to produce a competitive and future-ready workforce.”


The Policy Dialogue brought together policy, practical and professional perspectives to contribute to the discussion on the correlation between the internationalisation of higher education and the employability of the region’s graduates. The three days explored what steps can be taken to improve intra-ASEAN mobility programmes’ contributions to graduate employability in the Industry 4.0 context. The dialogue provided opportunity for SHARE Scholarship alumni to share their view on the contribution of SHARE intra-ASEAN mobility programmes to their employability.

The Policy Dialogue also introduced the result of the three recent studies conducted by SHARE and its experts, namely: The Baseline Study of Internationalisation in ASEAN, Study of Virtual Exchange Schemes in ASEAN, and Study on Digital Credentials Recognition.


Darren McDermott, the SHARE Team Leader, stated “The SHARE Programme continues its commitment to support the future readiness of ASEAN students and graduates through the implementation of digital modalities of internationalisation, such as virtual exchange, Collaborative Online International Learning, and digital credentials. Through this, we aim to contribute to ASEAN’s sustainable human development as set out in the ASEAN Declaration on Human Resources Development for the Changing World of Work 2020-2030 and the ASEAN Work Plan on Education 2021-2025.”


The SHARE Higher Education Harmonisation Community of Practice (CoP) was also officially launched in conjunction with this Policy Dialogue. This CoP is a practitioner led platform for stakeholders from across Southeast Asia to work together on addressing the opportunities and challenges in the harmonisation and internationalisation of the region’s higher education. It is envisaged the SHARE CoP will work collaboratively to develop strategies and exchange good practice to augment international education provision across the region. It is also a forum for practitioners to give voice to their views on the region’s higher education policy discussions and decision-making processes.




Watch the full recordings of the three-day webinar series by clicking the following links:

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3


SHARE is a project of

SHARE is implemented by