30 September 2020

9:00 – 9:30

Log into the platform

9:30 – 10:00

Opening remarks

10:00 – 12:00


The presentation will focus on the assumptions underpinning the drive for client/user involvement in the design and delivery of career guidance services. The main question addressed will be whether client/user involvement is, in itself, progressive and aligned with democratic practices, or whether, instead, it carries risks that potentially jeopardise professional standards. The discourse around client/user involvement is located within the ideology promoted by models of New Public Management. There are thus clear links between this movement, and neoliberal values that strive to increase accountability and relevance in public services by challenging the authoritative voice of professional providers. This challenge has both progressive and regressive moments, and in facing up to both, new models of service delivery as well as new practices can emerge that work in the interests of all citizens, including the most vulnerable. 

Prof. Ronald G. Sultana studied career guidance at the University of Reading (UK), and carried out doctoral research on career education at the Universities of Waikato (NZ), and post-doctoral research at Stanford (USA), where he was a Fulbright Fellow. He is professor of sociology and comparative education at the University of Malta, where he directs the Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Educational Research. In 2020, Sultana was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Université Laval (Quebec) for his work in career guidance. A list of his publications is available at: http://www.um.edu.mt/emcer/publications

The contribution will discuss possible ways of reconciling different tensions that can arise in systems of publicly funded and massively provided – yet presumably “personalized” – guidance services for adults. How to reconcile the ambition of co-constructing the service with the client with the tendency towards uniformisation in a pre-defined course of a guidance programme? How to reconcile the need for predictability of the costs with the reality of variable duration and intensity of the service based on users’ needs? Possible solutions will be illustrated through case studies of guidance provision in Slovakia (PES) and France (public guidance services for working adults).

Tomas Sprlak is currently service manager of the newly launched public guidance service for working adults at CIBC Meurthe et Moselle in France. He previously worked as a manager of guidance and counselling services of the Slovak public employment services. He serves as president of the Slovak Association for Career Guidance and Career Development (ZKPRK) and of the European Federation of Centrs of Career Guidance and Bilan de Compétences (FECBOP).

12:00 – 12:30


12:30 – 12:45

Switch into workshop rooms

12:45 – 13:30

Parallel workshop sessions 1

Clients’ feedback, nowadays is one of the most important parts, even for the improvement of labour market services. Therefore, many instruments can be applied. One of it are customer surveys, which are intensely used in the German PES since many years, with positive experiences. The workshop starts with a short introduction of the Centre of Clients and Staff Surveys. Hereafter, we focus on how to measure clients’ satisfaction and needs, as well as the benefits of these surveys and have a deep dive into the clients’ view on career counselling in Germany.

  • How do we measure the quality and the effectivity of career counselling?
  • What happens with these results?
  • How do our customers rate the quality of career counselling?
  • What are the effects of career counselling in Germany
  • What are the influencing factors on career counselling? Join the workshop and get a best practice example.

Patricia Weichert is working as a senior project manager at the Centre of Clients and Staff Surveys of the German Public Employment Service since 2009. She co-ordinates the jobseekers’ and employers’ surveys and acts as an internal management consultant. One of her main survey projects is the measurement of quality and effectivity of career counselling.

The Elisabeth Youth Foundation offers some different ways for young people to answer their questions about future, career, lifestyle, self-knowledge or any other connecting issues that can help them to find how they can manage their life effectively.

In this workshop we would like to present the research that supports the theoretical background for our work, the web interfaces that help online counselling and the offline methods that we work with. We offer our services in the form of individual and group career counselling. Our methods are based on individual needs, feedback, and competencies. We have a website for children and young people where they can ask anonymous questions during online consultations with professionals, they can find tests about self-knowledge or careers and they can search for education opportunities. Our offline methods include gamification and experiential learning methods, some of them will be shown at the workshop.

Anikó Kottes is a youth worker and a community coordinator at Elisabeth Youth Foundation Nonprofit Ltd (Erzsebet Ifjusagi Alap).

The workshop offers an overview on understanding generational differences and commonalities. We will work on identifying how generational differences may affect communication and outcomes.

Participants will explore the prevailing stereotypes about different generations and gain an awareness of their own generational “blind spots” that often lead to misunderstandings and conflict. Our goal is to overcome stereotypes and build working relationships.

Andrej Mohorčič – Experienced Employment Counselor (PES) with a history of working in the human resources industry. Skilled in Career Development, Coaching and Career Assessment.

Galeria de Sonhos (Dream Gallery, in English) is a solidarity project as well as a creative contest developed jointly with students of  Alternative Curriculum Pathway. The aim of the project is to validate abilities, explore skills, expand the professional range and awaken the voice of young students divested of themselves, of others (peers and adults), and of their school pathway. At the same time, it aims to instill principles of solidarity and active citizenship, stimulate motivation and belief and make these young students more self-determined and oriented at the goals that may guide their own future.

From the project prepared for a group that is perceived by the school community as less positive, to the recognition of each of its students and spreading it to a community, we will go through this pleasant route built by a posture and investment and belief, of recognition and change.

Tânia Marquez Santos is an educational psychologist, member of the Portuguese Order of Psychologists specialized in Psychology of Education, Clinical and Health Psychology and Community Psychology and a postgraduate in Psychological Assessment and Intervention with Children and Adolescents. She is, in addition, a teacher at the Escola Superior de Saúde de Santarém and a local coordinator of the DGE EsABE Pilot Project – Learning and Wellness. She was awarded a mention of merit by the Direção Geral de Educação in Partnership with the Portuguese Order of Psychologists for training on Instruments and Resources in Psychological Guidance and Intervention.

13:30 – 13:45


13:45 – 14:30

Parallel workshop sessions 2

The workshop will draw on some key findings and obstacles encountered during the implementation of the ongoing national project “Standards” which is set to establish a complex guidance ecosystem in educational sector in Slovakia. This ecosystem is based on the premise that career guidance providers (psychological centres, schools) and pupils with their parents represent equally important parts of the system and that the needs, possibilities and ideas of all actors are respected and taken into account. Centres and schools are not only providers of the guidance services but also their creators. Active engagement of pupils and their parents takes not only the form of the feedback but they are also encouraged to participate in designing the services. 

These principles are embedded in the newly prepared career guidance standards as well as in support materials and educational programmes for guidance counsellors which were also created in a collaborative manner with engagement of different practitioners. Key questions addressed during this creative process are: 

  1. Co-creation can be seen as the highest level of counselling/cooperative relationship – can/should we aim at this level with all actors and at all times?
  2. How do we recognize and respect different levels of cooperation and engagement?
  3. Should we (as professionals) only address clients’ needs and requirements or is our responsibility also to shape their expectations of service?

Mária Jaššová is a psychologist with experience in career guidance provision for youth and adults employing creative techniques and methods. She is currently working at the Research Institute of Child Psychology and Pathopsychology on the national project “Standards” (project activity: Education and Human Resources Development)

Through the Get Ready – Enrol at University programme, career guidance and counselling is provided for students of final years of secondary schools who belong to social groups underrepresented in higher education (people from poor and/or rural areas, people with disabilities, Roma people, children without parental care, etc.). The programme is carried out in student dormitories in Belgrade by University of Belgrade, Centre for Career Development and Student Counselling. It encompasses educational workshops and information and counselling sessions, enabling students to gather information, discover their own potentials, prepare for university studies and plan their career. The entire programme is appropriate to the needs of the target group and continuous support is offered through numerous resources available on the Centre’s website. During this lecture you will have opportunity to hear more about its activities and some guidelines for preparing similar programme.

Katarina Milovanovic is a pedagogue at High school students dormitory ‘Jelica Milovanovic’ in Belgrade

Jelena Radivojevic is a teacher at High school students dormitory ‘Jelica Milovanovic’ in Belgrade

The most important tool in career counselling is us – career guidance practitioners. In order to understand the individuality of clients and their diverse career paths, we must first understand who we are and how our experiences, values, attitudes and qualities can affect our work with clients and our ability to provide tailor-made guidance. Can we distinguish the client’s voice from our “inner voice”? Do we really serve the needs of our clients or are they our needs?

In the workshop, I will present an introduction to critical reflection and narrative counselling through “hands-on” activities. We will discuss why it is important – regardless of the length of our practice – to critically review our own approaches and what benefits this brings to our clients and ourselves. Let’s discover the roots of our own uniqueness together.

Helena Košťálová works in EKS in the Czech republic as a lecturer, career development professional, methods specialist and author of scientific publications. She is interested in all levels of career counselling – from policy level and theories to practical work with clients. She also leads in-service trainings for career professionals She works with clients of ages 9 to 60+ with diverse life experience. Currently, she is working on her PhD thesis in school counselling at Charles University Prague. She was awarded the National career guidance award in 2013 for her lectures in career guidance.

Given the growing needs of an individualized approach to career development and the challenges of the labor market – the specific lines of occupations and jobs are unclear and work conditions are changing (e.g. working from home due to Covid -19 measures, reducing or increasing the need employee profiles), we’ll show parts of our workshops by which we analyze our skills and values. Through various self-assessments we realize that, in addition to technical knowledge, we must be well aware of our attributes in order to select and develop a career.

Mateja Tolj is a psychologist and licensed psychotherapist who has been working at Croatian Career Guidance Centre (CISOK) as senior expert adviser. That job provides the best of two worlds – working directly with people in smaller capacities and being able to be part of big organisation that ensures labour and career policies. Over seven years of counselling career provides the experience of working with challenging cases and diverse clients and every day becomes a new challenge and opportunity to learn.

14:30 – 15:00

Summary and closing remarks