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WG3 – Output 3: Mapping Out Gaps and Mismatches Against Industry Expectations and Requirements

Start date: 20/02/2021
End date: 08/09/2021
Leading organisation: Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan
Participating Organisations: Aston University, Università degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza, EURNEX e.V., Technische Hochschule Wildau, Sveuciliste u Zagrebu, Universidad de Málaga, Zilinska univerzita v Ziline.

Aim of the WG

The aim of the WG was to map out current rail higher education provision against industry expectations and, as a result, identify apparent gaps and mismatches.

General Description of the Work Done

The following has been done in the WG:

  • Mapping of study paths in the different partner universities.
  • Consolidation of the industry needs and comparison of stated and revealed preferences.
  • Mapping parallel sectors approach at partner universities.
  • Representation of gaps and mismatches between industry needs and higher education provision.

Main Results

The main output of this work is a depiction of the gaps existing in the university provision, the expectations and desires of industrial partners, and an analysis of the suitability of the Rails Careers Matrix (RCM) for highlighting the needs and expectations of the industry while coupling it to the educational provisions.

Putting all this information together has showcased the possibilities and limitations of linking higher education paths and outcomes with specific job offers or needs, and in doing so, study path and permeability have been defined. Using this systematic scale, a thorough picture has been depicted for the student study possibilities.

From the job market and stakeholder analyses, a thorough consolidation job has been carried out to highlight the top five skill groups that are needed in the railway industry.

Top five most demanded skill groups:

Subset Top five demanded skills
European strategic Externalities Logistics Modelling and data Legal Safety and security
European tactical Reliability and asset management Logistics Costing Legal Safety and security
European operational Reliability and asset management Signalling Modelling and data Legal Safety and security
Germany Costing Operation Modelling and data Legal Safety and security

A systematic study of professional sectors different than Railways has also been performed at the partner universities, generating a very powerful analysis of academic practices in Europe for different transport sectors.

Finally, all the work has been crystallised in a visual representation of the Gaps and Mismatches both from the RCM and Career Paths point of view, highlighting those skills and educational areas that need an increased amount of talent in the railway sector.

The gaps found in the industry analysis (top five most demanded skill groups, see above) are not necessarily explicitly related to the RCM Levels and Domains. To understand where the needs are coming from, each RCM category description has been analysed, searching for references to the actual needs in the table above. The result is depicted in the following figures, where the explicit mention of the gap is marked with “yes” and an implicit or more vague mention is marked with “not always”.

Mentions of industry needs in the RCM levels:

There is an apparent need to strengthen “reliability and asset management” and integrate “modelling and data” in the study paths, as they are considered a big need from the industry. Other high-level industry needs have subsystem-specific applications that should be further reviewed. A more targeted analysis is recommended so that the actual specific needs are understood and addressed in educational programs.

Documents for Download

The output report (Output 3 final report) is available at

astonrail_handbook/astonrail_project/wg3.txt · Last modified: 2023/07/04 10:53 by anne-katrin_o