Funding opportunities for upskilling and reskilling to support the digital competences of individuals and organizations are available in the form of loans, grants, and financial instruments. For the period 2021 – 2026 most of the activities in digital transformation are financed through Recovery and Resilience facility but also as activities in Horizon, Erasmus+, ESIF, and EEA grant schemes. You may find more on the page of the Czech Republic’s National Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition.
Recovery and Resilience Plan
The Czech Republic’s Recovery and Resilience Plan has a total allocation of EUR 7 billion in grants, out of which 22% will foster the digital transition, and 42% will support climate objectives. The RRP focuses on responding on the urgent need to support a robust recovery and preparation for the future. The plan’s reforms and investments will make the Czech Republic more resilient, sustainable, and well-equipped for the opportunities and challenges presented by the green and digital transitions. The plan consists of 91 investment measures and 33 reforms.
Digital challenges for Czech Republic include improving connectivity through very high-capacity networks, expanding the availability and use of e-government services, and assisting businesses, particularly SMEs, in going digital. To address the growing need of organisations and businesses to swiftly undergo digital transformation, advanced digital capabilities need to be improved. With investments and reforms in digital skills, e-government, digital connectivity, and business digital transformation, Czech Republic’s recovery and resilience plan supports the digital transition. In addition to updating the digital curricula in education, €585 million will be invested in digital equipment for schools, teacher training, new university programmes in fast-growing digital fields, and upskilling and reskilling courses for citizens. Additionally, the plan will invest €585 million on the digital transformation and cyber-security of the justice system, health care system, and public administration. The digital transition will be supported by investing €650 million in the digital transformation of businesses, digital innovation hubs and very high-capacity networks and 5G networks.
Through the project ‘Digital equipment for schools’, schools bought 74 000 laptops, tablets, and mobile phones in late 2020, which enabled them to offer distance learning throughout the one-year school lockdown. In the upcoming years, schools will be equipped with advanced digital technologies which are necessary for implementing the curricula reform, i.e. teaching in accordance with the new IT-focused curricula. At least 80% of schools will purchase digital equipment to set up mobile funds of digital devices for 70 000 disadvantaged students in order to guarantee equal access to digital learning.
Central European Digital Media Observatory Hub (CEDMO) creation and activities are supported with EUR 43 million funding, from the Recovery and Resilience Facility. CEDMO’s goals are detecting disinformation, including through the use of machine learning, preparing digital and media training and materials, and developing fact-checking platforms debunking disinformation.
Operational program Employment plus 2021-2027 (OPZ+) is a state initiative by Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. OPZ+ represents a key prerequisite for the use of financial resources from the European Social Fund in the area of employment and social inclusion in the 2021-2027 program period, while following the Operational Program Employment implemented in the 2014-2020 program period.
Czechitas foundation offers a scholarship for women and girls aged 15+ in disadvantaged economic situations. The scholarship aims to support their IT education by offering participation in Digital Academy.
Different funding options are also available on the Digital Skills and Jobs platform, you may find a listing for the Czech Republic on this link.