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Regional framework conditions for future careers related to transport and mobility

Alexandra David (Institute for Work and Technology, Westfälische Hochschule, Gelsenkirchen, Germany)
Judith Terstriep (Institute for Work and Technology, Westfälische Hochschule, Gelsenkirchen, Germany)

Journal of Strategy and Management

ISSN: 1755-425X

Article publication date: 17 August 2015

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337

Abstract

Purpose

In the search for appropriate solutions to cope with ever increasing road traffic, cities and urban agglomerations across Europe are placing great emphasis on new transport and mobility solutions, and electric mobility in particular. Being located at the intersection of the three constituent sectors automotive, information and communication technologies and green energy, electric mobility is perceived as future-oriented sector. Innovation in the sector not only requires the collaboration and exchange of knowledge, but also an increase in skilled workforces and distinct job qualifications. These demands emerge, on the one hand, through the electrification of cars, which results in structural changes in the entire value chain. On the other hand, growing customer and service orientation further accelerate such developments. So far, the knowledge about the concrete demands for engineers as knowledge carriers and innovation driver is rather scarce. To shed some light on this issue, the purpose of this paper is to discuss companies’ altered demand for engineers in electric mobility and the role of networks (e.g. clusters).

Design/methodology/approach

This paper discusses two regions characterised as traditional automotive regions (Stuttgart in Germany and Alsace/Franche-Comté in France) and the shift in demands of the companies in these regions using the engineering workforce as an example. Electric mobility related companies were surveyed and asked about their current need of engineers. In addition, the survey investigated the companies’ ways of recruiting engineers, their spatial scope of search for employees and the skills and thematic courses needed to solve the lack of qualifications. The survey results are discussed against a background of regional framework settings and influencing factors of both the regions analysed.

Findings

This paper finds that there is a shift in qualification demands of engineers involved in the sector of transport and mobility. Initiated by the processes along the entire value chain, new skills are required by companies. The current engineers are asked to mix their technical know-how with service orientation and knowledge of new markets.

Originality/value

The world is becoming increasingly mobile. Within the last decades, the number of daily commuters has expanded producing high capacities of road traffic. This has brought several challenges for cities and regions. To face them new transport and mobility concepts are of key importance for cities and regions. Along these lines, well-skilled human capital in the form of engineers is needed to expand the concepts with their skills and knowledge.

Keywords

Citation

David, A. and Terstriep, J. (2015), "Regional framework conditions for future careers related to transport and mobility", Journal of Strategy and Management, Vol. 8 No. 3, pp. 211-230. https://doi.org/10.1108/JSMA-03-2015-0025

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited