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ESF+ powers skills for the battery industry

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The battery industry is an important example of how Europe is working to develop the skills to future proof its economy – and create a safer, greener society.  Without batteries, the EU cannot store green energy, meet its low-emissions mobility goals, or continue to grow its economy to meet the demands of the green transition. The sector is therefore vital for the EU’s economic strategy, and will increasingly power its global competitiveness.    

The European Commission launched the European Battery Alliance Academy in 2017. In line with the European Green Deal, the  Circular Economy Action Plan and the Industrial Strategy, the Alliance aims to develop a competitive, circular, sustainable and safe value chain for all batteries placed on the EU market. It brings together Member States, industry, the scientific community and other stakeholders to contribute across the battery value chain.  

800 000 skilled workers needed  

It is estimated that the battery value chain will result in three to four million direct and indirect jobs in the EU, encompassing manufacturing, chemistry, data science and cell engineering. Vincentiu Ciobanu, CEO at Prime Batteries Technology in Romania, explains, 'one of the major problems we are facing is getting the right talents. We need an average of 90-100 new people working in our factories for each gigawatt-hour that we create.’ With the ambition to reach 1000 gigawatts, Europe will need to re-skill or up-skill 800,000 workers in the battery industry by 2025.  

Responding to these demands, the European Battery Alliance works with the InnoEnergy Skills Institute, which develops the training courses and teaching methods needed to immediately roll out high-quality training across Member States via a network of local training providers. Launched in 2022 as the European Battery Alliance Academy (EBAA) and subsequently rebranded as the InnoEnergy Institute, the EBAA receives €10 million of ESF+ funding through REACT EU. Its activities are part of the EU's Skills Agenda and the Pact for Skills.

The European Battery Alliance Academy is crucial to accelerate the success story of the European Battery Alliance and is a concrete deliverable of the Pact for Skills.’, said Nicolas Schmit, European Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights. 

ESF+ support 

The ESF+ provides valuable support to the European Battery Alliance by investing in people to develop the skills for new, emerging roles in the growing battery supply chain. Thanks to funding from ESF+, the online platform of the InnoEnergy Institute offers over 400 hours of training, with 50 free licenses to teaching institutions across each Member State. The ESF+ also provides training for trainers and delivers training programmes in multiple languages – cutting time and cost and ensuring curricula continue to develop as the sector advances. Workers can learn valuable skills as quickly and effectively as possible to fill new, emerging roles – such as cell design engineers, battery test technicians and experts in battery storage technology.  

Angelica Haldebo, who recently moved from a job in retail to an advanced position at Northvolt in Sweden – a European producer of batteries – related how training provided through the institute quickly helped her build valuable skills, relating her course was ‘[…] designed to be as effective as possible. It is a great concept […] combining theoretical and practical exercises together,' adding, '[..] Dreams don’t come true often, but I managed.’ 


A video featuring how the European Battery Alliance contributes to the technology and skills revolution in Europe was presented at the launch event of the European Year of Skills on 9 May 2023.