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Almost 80pc of Ireland’s ICT specialists have third-level education

26 Oct 2016

Ireland’s information and communication technology (ICT) sector has more specialists with a higher education than the rest of the EU, but only one in five of them are women.

Almost 1.5m additional ICT specialists were employed in the EU in the last five years, according to Eurostat, the EU’s statistical office.

Eurostat found that nearly 8m people were employed in the ICT sector across the EU in 2015, representing 3.5pc of total employment.

Future Human

However, the data found that ICT is still a largely male profession, with women representing less than one in five specialists across the EU. While Ireland fell slightly on the better side of the EU average, it was Bulgaria that had the highest proportion of women in 2015, at nearly 30pc.

Highly educated workforce

While just a third of total employed people in the EU have a third-level education, this almost doubles when it comes to ICT specialists. The statistics found that over 60pc of ICT specialists in the EU have a third-level education.

Ireland surpasses this even further, with 77.5pc, just behind Lithuania and Spain.

Italy recorded the lowest percentage of ICT specialists with a third-level education, with just one-third.

Younger employees

It seems the ICT industry is hiring younger employees too. Across the EU, more than one in three ICT specialists were under 35 in 2015, with some member states enjoying a workforce in which over half were in this age category. Almost 60pc of Malta’s ICT employees are under 35, in contrast to Italy’s one-quarter.

Ireland is closer to the EU’s youthful average, with 32.8pc of its ICT workforce aged 35 and under. It is one of the few countries in the EU whose age profile in the ICT sector matches closely with the age profile of total employment.

Most member states have a vastly younger workforce in the ICT sector, compared to the rest of their employment figures – with the exception of seven countries, including Ireland and the UK.

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Jenny Darmody
By Jenny Darmody

Jenny Darmody became the deputy editor of Silicon Republic in 2020, having worked as the careers editor until June 2019. When she’s not writing about the science and tech industry, she’s writing short stories and attempting novels. She continuously buys more books than she can read in a lifetime and pretty stationery is her kryptonite. She also believes seagulls to be the root of all evil and her baking is the stuff of legends.

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