The Scottish Digital Academy is making sure education and talent support the tech ecosystem

The Scottish Digital Academy provides high quality professional learning and training to support the development of digital skills across the public and third sectors in Scotland. It’s our mission to work collaboratively to secure sus-tained improvement in building and enhancing digital skills.

In a time of significant change, we all recognise that digital skills are needed at every level of an organisation and across all job roles and grades. The future of Scotland as a thriving digital nation relies on people being equipped with the best possible learning experiences that empowers them to do their job effectively and with confidence.

Ensuring we have a strong, digitally skilled workforce will be a key driver to inclusive economic growth. The Scottish Technology Eco-system Review (2020) identifies education and talent as being one of three fundamental supporting areas upon which the perfor-mance of Scotland’s tech ecosystem depends.

Interventions are proposed across the education system and the Scottish Government is working closely with educators, industry, academia, and skills providers to implement its education and skills-related recommendations.

My own background and career in education and technology brings a fresh perspective to our ambition and I’m passionate about digital skills development and delivering a central, co-ordinated, cost effective and coherent programme of learning and coaching. It’s the best way that we can deliver public value and positive impact at scale.

By working with other colleagues across Scottish Government and with our partners and stakeholders, we’re now working to design and offer new programmes in areas such as cyber security, cloud computing and service design, supported by innovative online learning capabilities. This will accelerate the delivery of digital skills that we need both now and in the future; building stronger professional communities to share best practice and develop leadership capability.

In becoming the digital skills provider of choice, the Scottish Digital Academy will deliver and facilitate high quality professional learning and training, with a specific focus on service design and transformation. This will drive our ambition for the next few years, informing our annual objectives and the short, medium and long-term outcomes associated with our work.

Our thematic priorities are driven by the principles and actions outlined within the digital strategy, A Changing Nation: How Scotland Will Survive in a Digital World (2021), where the characteristics are necessary for true digital government.

As the strategy is jointly owned by local and national government, it will underpin our work for the years to come. We are data driven, using innovative and sustainable approaches to share our challenges and to co-develop and co-produce innovative solutions in partnership with others.

We’ll make effective use of technology enabled opportunities to deliver high quality experiences and we recognise that digitisation works best when we collaborate at community, local, regional and national level and when we work across the public, private, voluntary and academic sectors.

It’s crucial that we continue to support organisations as they engage in agile service design, improving digital products and experiences for people in Scotland.