On October 27, Metamorfosis Foundation was part of the conference “Digital Skills for Civic Engagement” organized by the Macedonian-American Alumni Association (MAAA) and the Center for Social Innovation Blink 42-21. The conference was attended by interested young people from secondary schools and professors who were part of the project.

Opening speeches were given by the president of MAAA, Verica Jordanova, Marlene Nice, public relations officer at the US Embassy in North Macedonia, and Milan Tančeski, executive director of Blink 42-21. As a speaker at the conference, Nikos Panagiotis, associate professor at the Faculty of Journalism and Mass Communications at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and president of DCN Global, also gave his online address.

After the opening speeches, there was a presentation of the initiatives implemented through the project, followed by a panel discussion on the importance of digital skills, the status and opportunities for education and training in the Republic of North Macedonia. The moderator of the discussion was Bojan Kordalov, expert and member of MAAA, and the panelists were Milan Tančevski – executive director of Blink 42-21, Vesna Ivanovska – vice president of the Management Board of MASIT, Dejan Zlatkovski – project manager at UNDP, Azir Aliu – university representative and executive director of the Center for Future Skills from Tetovo, Dimitar Jovevski, PhD – professor at the e-business department at the Faculty of Economics, and Mila Josifovska Danilovska – program coordinator at the “Metamorphosis” Foundation.

In the discussion, the representative of Metamorphosis mostly referred to the importance of enhancing digital skills among all citizens, especially young people, because new digital achievements appear every day that bring new opportunities for work with increased productivity and more efficient delivery of services.

“In recent years it has become evident that if we do not embrace technology and if we do not adapt our skills and habits accordingly, we risk being left behind and caught up in the digital divide. Some time ago I came across a very interesting view of Darwin’s theory of evolution called Digital Darwinism, according to which the species that survive are not the ones that are the strongest or the smartest, but those that are the most adaptable to changes – I think that is applicable in this case as well” – she concluded.

Josifovska Danilovska also referred to the importance of digital literacy of the entire population so that they can actively feel the benefits of digital transformation. In parallel with digital literacy, she said that it is necessary to work on the collective awareness of the benefits of using digital technologies, highlighting the risks arising from their improper use. In the direction of building their digital skills, as final recommendations, Josifovska Danilovska recommended to the young people to do research, and be vocal with their requests.