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Declaration on IT Professionalism for Europe

IT Professionalism Europe (ITPE) is a network of leading stakeholders committed to the advancement of IT professionalism in Europe. Recognising that the world is being changed profoundly by new technologies and the digitalisation of industry, and that today’s working conditions and job dynamics are set to change significantly, we, ITPE members, believe that it is imperative that IT professionalism receives greater focus and priority in Europe as well as globally.  

We note that: 

  • A key aspect of fulfilling the digital potential is to ensure that organisations can recruit highly skilled IT talent, so that an exemplary IT workforce can drive Europe’s digital transformation successfully; 

  • 40% of European enterprises struggle to recruit IT-staff with the right skills, and that it is estimated that there would be a lack of 749,000 skilled IT-practitioners* in Europe by 2020; 

  • Our modern economy increasingly depends on digital products and services. At the same time, cyber-threats are rising, and they pose considerable risks for society. 

  • The IT profession is immature and still lacks status and recognition in society; 

  • Employers struggle to define IT job profiles as well as competences, and to provide for appropriate professional development for IT staff; 

  • Greater number of young people (especially girls) should be encouraged to study IT and pursue a career in the IT workforce in all sectors. 

We therefore acknowledge the need to develop and mature the IT profession and improve its status in Europe, in the context and with the support of major EU policies, including: 

  • The EU’s Digital Single Market Strategy (2015), 

  • The Skills Agenda for Europe (2016), which includes the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition and the Blueprint for sectoral cooperation on skills 

  • The Digital Education Action Plan (2018) 

We will build on the valuable work of the European Committee for Standardisation Technical Committee for Digital Competences and ICT Professionalism (CEN TC428) and other relevant international standardisation initiatives as well as stakeholders’ efforts**, based on the four pillars of IT professionalism: 

  • Foundational body of knowledge 

  • Standardised IT professionals’ competences 

  • Professional scheme of education, certification and training, 

  • Code of professional ethics. 


A Call to Action: 

In order to advance IT professionalism in Europe, we, the ITPE members, including stakeholders from European and national governments, industry, education and training institutions, social partners, professional associations, NGOs etc. will build a large community of experts and visionaries that will serve as a forum for the promotion of relevant standards that apply to the IT profession.  

To this end, we will: 

  • Support the development, adoption and maintenance of the highest standards for the IT profession by 2025; 

  • Foster an open dialogue about IT professionalism and disseminate good practices; 

  • Contribute to raising awareness of the attractiveness of a career in IT and the available opportunities; 

  • Invite key stakeholders (especially from the demand side) to promote the IT profession and its benefits for society; and encourage policy makers to give IT professionalism a greater priority;  

  • Support communities that promote a shared vision of the IT profession at all levels.

*Source: Capgemini, IDC and empirica. Estimate presented at the “European conference on IT Professionalism”, 15 November 2018, Brussels,

**ISO, IEEE, ACM, and relevant policy initiatives in the USA and Japan, etc.