National Coding Week was first launched in 2014 in a bid to tackle the UK’s growing digital skills shortage. It has now become an annual event to get as many people as possible to learn about coding and to encourage industry experts to share their knowledge.
About National Coding Week
National Coding Week was founded in 2014 by former head teacher Richard Rolfe and tech entrepreneur Jordan Love to try and improve digital literacy and knowledge. The goal of NCW is to fill the growing skills gap in the UK.
Many children today have grown up in the digital era and are competent on the internet, on smartphones and even with coding – thanks to a coding curriculum introduced by the government in 2014.
However, many adults have missed out on the digital revolution and do not possess the same skills and knowledge as the younger generations.
Various events are held across the UK throughout National Coding Week to offer adults the chance to participate in taster sessions, workshops, online and face-to-face training and reverse mentoring to develop their understanding of code.
The aims of National Coding Week
National Coding Week has three aims:
- To encourage adults of any age to improve their knowledge and learn an element of computer coding
- To encourage digital experts to share their skills throughout the week in an attempt to narrow the skills gap
- To collaborate, share, learn and have fun
Organisers of the event are calling on the UK tech community, the government and anyone else who wants to get involved to show their support and back the campaign by using the hashtag #NationalCodingWeek.
More information about the campaign, events and sponsors as well as how to get involved can be found on the website.
About the UK’s digital industry
According to the Tech Nation 2018 report, the UK’s tech industry is expanding 2.6 times faster than the rest of the economy and is worth nearly £184 billion to the economy.
London boasts the world’s second-most connected tech ecosystem and closely follows California’s Silicon Valley. However, the UK holds the top spot when it comes to the number of overseas customers; a third of London’s tech business consists of foreign customers.
The UK is third in the world for producing successful tech companies – ranking behind the US and China. The UK tech industry has created more $1 billion (USD) companies than any other European country and in the last year has created 13 new unicorns – privately-owned tech companies which have a value of over $1 billion.
Why does the UK need a National Coding Week?
There is a need for diversity within the tech industry as only 19% of the workforce is female. National Coding Week will enable more women to find out about the possibilities of a career in the tech industry and see for themselves if they have a talent or interest in it.
The tech sector is one of the fastest-growing industries in the UK, yet is facing a skills gap due to a lack of relevant knowledge. It is estimated that in the next two years there will be additional 745,000 workers required in the tech industry. Holding an annual National Coding Week will allow people to try out coding and speak to industry experts to gain a better understanding of what the industry entails – potentially sparking their interest and leading towards future employment prospects.
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