KPMG has joined seven of the biggest names from the world of tech, business, education and finance to back a new scheme which aims to help more than one million young people to develop their digital skills and business ideas over the next five years.
KPMG plus Barclays, Microsoft, Telefonica (O2), Mozilla, Salesforce.com, Silicon Valley Bank and University of Huddersfield have given their support to iDEA – the inspiring Digital Enterprise Award, which has been devised by HRH The Duke of York and Nominet Trust – the UK’s only dedicated tech for good funder.
Commenting on their partnership, Iain Moffatt, UK head of regions at KPMG said: “The tech sector in the UK is firing on all cylinders with sustained growth outstripping the wider economy. Technology plays an increasingly important role in the skills that young people need for the world of work and encouraging more young people to develop their digital skills will be vital in keeping the UK competitive. By providing pro-bono advice, mentors and judges from across the firm, KPMG is proud to support iDEA which we believe demonstrates the significant commitment from business that is needed to encourage and help our young people start their own digital business and become more employable.”
Annika Small, CEO of Nominet Trust, said: “Today’s announcement demonstrates a significant commitment from businesses across the UK to equipping young people with the entrepreneurial, digital and employability skills they need to succeed. Through the iDEA programme we will be working hard to support the UK economy with a digitally literate, confident and capable workforce.”
Young people taking part in the iDEA award scheme will have their skills and achievements recognised through open badges - a new global standard to recognise skills and achievements across the web. In addition to the three core iDEA badges, many of the new partners will sponsor their own open badge and offer participants in the programme the chance to carry out online tasks in order to earn one.
The award is currently being piloted with hundreds of young people from across the country in preparation for a full national rollout in October 2014. Over the next five years, iDEA aims to support one million young people across the UK to improve their digital skills, develop digital business concepts and start up their own business ventures.
Today’s announcement comes as the pilot enters its final stage. On Tuesday, the 15 most promising teams entered the third and final stage of the award pilot programme, judged by a panel of experts, including Tim Kay who leads KPMG’s high growth technology team in Shoreditch. Each team will receive up to £5,000 in grants, as well as mentor support to develop their concept and earn their Live Badge. Up to three finalists will be selected in October to receive the overall 2014 iDEA Award and a grant worth up to £15,000.
To find out more about iDEA, please go to: www.onemillionyoungideas.org.uk.
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iDEA aims to support 14-25 year olds to develop and improve their digital and entrepreneurial skills. The programme has been designed to boost the confidence of young people and increase their employability status at the same time.
iDEA will support young people in developing a digital business venture, enabling them to build prototypes and test the viability of their business idea with real customers in the market. In addition, the iDEA initiative will offer young people the opportunity to attain industry-endorsed skill badges in specific areas of digital and enterprise, recognising new learning that can be shared with future employers. Both the competition and library of badges will be accessed through registration on the iDEA website.
iDEA has been piloted in 2014 with 1,000 young people. In October 2014, iDEA will launch nationally, aiming to register 10,000 young people on to the 2014-15 competition. It will also give 25,000 young people the chance to gain industry-endorsed open skills badges during the first 12 months. Anyone looking to take part in the iDEA programme launching in October 2014 can now register their interest at www.onemillionyoungideas.org.uk.
The annual competition breaks down into three stages:
The business ventures that show the most potential will be awarded £15,000 funding and mentoring to further develop their ideas into a successful business start-up. Winners will also be offered a place on a partner sponsored accelerator programme.
The Duke of York and Nominet Trust are working in partnership with DigitalMe to create the digital Open Badges that will recognise the achievements gained by young people through both the annual iDEA competition and the library of industry-endorsed skills badges.
The pilot programme has been supported by a number of formal and informal learning organisations, including: Free:Formers, Young Rewired State, The Key, CoderDojo, The Prince’s Trust, Hackney Community College, Gazelle Colleges and The Studio Schools Trust, as it seeks to build long-term capacity and growth across the UK’s digital economy.
About The Duke of York
British prosperity, in all its forms, is central to The Duke of York's work. His Royal Highness recognises and rewards the people and organisations that work to ensure we have the workforce, intellectual property and entrepreneurial culture to succeed.
The Duke of York considers it a priority to support young people in developing skills that make them more employable so that they can become economically active. There is no point having the right skills if there are no jobs. Generally, businesses are becoming more efficient and require fewer employees, so any growth in job opportunities will come from a more entrepreneurial economy. iDEA seeks to address both of these issues, Digital Skills, critical to the current market place and entrepreneurial endeavour.
About Nominet Trust
Nominet Trust is the UK’s leading social tech funder. The Trust believes in harnessing the power of digital technology to improve lives and communities.
A UK registered charity, Nominet Trust brings together, invests in and supports people committed to using digital technology to create social and economic value.
Nominet Trust has invested in more than 700 projects since its inception in 2008, providing business support as well as financial investment, seeking to connect projects to prospective partners who can help increase their reach and impact. Nominet Trust is the charitable foundation of Nominet, the company responsible for running the .UK internet infrastructure. Nominet believes in the positive power of the internet, and with the money generated from the registration of web addresses ending in .uk, .org.uk, and .co.uk, Nominet is proud to be able to fund Nominet Trust’s work.
Nominet Trust has been actively supporting the digital participation of young people for the past two years. It has devised and invested in, a number of initiatives, including Shaun’s Game Academy, a national coding competition for children and families in partnership with Shaun the Sheep’s creators, Aardman Animations; Make Things Do Stuff in partnership with Mozilla and Nesta; and the recently-launched iDEA programme with HRH The Duke of York.
Nominet Trust has also invested in the early-stage development and growth of Apps for Good, Code Club, Young Rewired State, Coderdojo, DigitalMe, and Tech will Save Us, amongst others. www.nominettrust.org.uk
This article represents the views of the author only, and does not necessarily represent the views or professional advice of KPMG in the UK.