In Switzerland, social partners represent the interest of employees or the ones of employers. Since both form part of the non-public professional organisations in the public-private partnership (PPP) of vocational and professional education and training (VPET), they participate systematically at all VPET policy-making processes concerning legislative issues and the development of vocational standards. Social partners are invited to all VPET conferences and represented in all relevant commissions and working groups.
The Federal Commission for Vocational and Professional Education and Training FCVPET (Eidgenössische Berufsbildungskommission EBBK), designated by the Federal Council, advises SERI in matters regarding development and coordination of VPET on a strategic level. This ensures the alignment of the approaches in the area of VPET with general policy in education and the support of the government. The 15 members of the FCVPET represent the Confederation, the cantons and the professional organisations (trade/industry associations and social partners/trade unions)
National High-Level Conference
The annual “National High-Level Conference on Vocational and Professional Education and Training” (Nationales Spitzentreffen der Berufsbildung) has been held since 2005. The goal of this conference is to discuss the recent developments in VPET at a high level and to make strategic decisions on how to strengthen and develop the VPET system. The event serves to capture different perspectives in order to be able to respond to challenges and changes in the labour market that influence VPET. After each National High-Level Conference on VPET, a press release informs the public of the results. Sometimes a joint declaration is adopted (f. ex. in 2014).
Associated Partner Conference
The annual “Associated Partner Conference” (Verbundpartnertagung) is a workshop-type event. This well-established event for VPET stakeholders serves to share know-how and experiences in relation to the latest challenges, themes and activities in VPET. The VPET partners include the Confederation, the cantons, professional organisations (trade/industry associations and social partners/trade unions) as well as other stakeholders in education, labour market and integration (depending on the theme of the Conference).
Every year the Confederation organises the "Autumn Conference on Vocational and Professional Education and Training" (Herbsttagung der Berufsbildung) on national level. This platform supports the dissemination of information concerning the VPET system. It includes presentations of projects and enables networking amongst VPET stakeholders.
Experience Exchange Conferences
The experience exchange conferences (ERFA-Tagungen) serve to bring together the stakeholders of the PPP to discuss good practice in an actual working field on implementation level (for example the development, organization and application of examinations in Professional Education on tertiary level). Moreover these conferences also encourage networking activities amongst the relevante stakeholders.
- VPET Federal Commission (German, French, Italian)
- Associated Partner Conference (German, French, Italian)
- National High-Level Conference (in German, French and Italian)
- Autumn Conference on Vocational and Professional Education and Training (in German, French and Italian)
- Employees' umbrella association Travail.Suisse (in German and French)
- Employees' umbrella association Unia (in German, French and Italian)
- Employers’ umbrella association Schweizerischer Arbeitgeberverband (in German, French and Italian)
- Employers’ umbrella association Schweizerischer Gewerbeverband (in German, French and Italian)