CyberSkills - training for citizens in the digital economy

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CyberSkills Association

"The best way to predict the future is to invent it"
Nicholas Negroponte, MIT Media Lab


The CyberSkills Association is a not for private profit company, limited by guarantee, established as an international membership organisation to promote, support and develop the delivery of the CyberSkills programme.

CyberSkills is an international Information Society development initiative, creating a programme for citizens to develop the essential awareness and skills to remain competitive in the emerging global digital economy.

Based in Bristol, England, the CyberSkills Association was founded in 1996 to support a network of locally owned, licensed and quality assured CyberSkills Development Agencies.

The CyberSkills Association is working with its members to create a sustainable model of Information Society programmes for access, awareness raising, training, content production, research, partnership and planning. The mission of the CyberSkills Association is to ensure that every citizen is equipped throughout life with the essential values, skills and opportunities to fully participate in creating the Information Society.

The CyberSkills programme developed from funding provided by the UK Government Department of Employment TEC challenge in 1993. The CyberSkills model was created and developed by the South Bristol Learning Network in partnership with ICL.

CyberSkills Core Values and Programme

CyberSkills Core Values: The CyberSkills programme includes:
The CyberSkills model is now recognised and supported by various levels of government and the private sector. In the past year, the CyberSkills Association has grown to become a genuine development network of CyberSkills Development Agencies, creating a platform of integrated Information Society activities at a local, regional, national and international level.

The organisations managing, supporting, and funding CyberSkills programmes include local authorities, government ministries, TECs and LECs, FE colleges, universities, community technology centres, community regeneration partnerships, city councils and private sector companies.


The CyberSkills Association is the main engine driving CyberSkills development and provides the following services to its members:


  1. Advocacy
  2. Policy formation
  3. Information dissemination
  4. Networking
  5. Publicity
  6. Marketing
  7. Gateway Services


  1. CSA Xchange - an online information and communication facility
  2. Quality Framework
  3. Partnership brokerage
  4. Training and skills transfer
  5. Funding Forum
  6. Research
  7. Consultancy


  1. Constituency Building
  2. Materials Production
  3. Accreditation
  4. Implementation of new technologies
  5. Process development
  6. Network Integration
  7. Pilot project management
The CyberSkills Association has a clear set of strong core values and principles, a recognised, quality assured, global training brand and a successful track record of innovation and leadership in meeting the Information Society needs of individuals and communities.

Member sites

As of November 1996, the CyberSkills Association has 10 member sites in 4 countries, with 12 more planned for the first quarter 1997.

CyberSkills Development Agencies will be operational throughout the UK, Europe, North America, Africa, Australia and Asia.

Over 8,000 individuals and 1000 organisations have so far participated in CyberSkills workshops, presentations and roadshows, with participation from the following sectors:
  1. SMEs
  2. Local, regional and national government
  3. TECs and LECs
  4. Utilities
  5. Voluntary/community/NGOs
  6. IT and Telecomms
  7. Industrial, commercial, financia
  8. Education and training
  9. Media and Information providers
  10. Retail
  11. Health and environment
  12. Job training/unemployed
" The best way to learn virtual and global networking skills is by working on a project that requires them." Ives and Jarenpaa

Current CyberSkills Development Agencies

Johanna Nicholls
CyberSkills Association
Success stories from South Bristol Learning Network
The importance of lifelong learning