Just under 56,000 people from more than 40 countries attended last week’s Offshore Europe event – making it the second-biggest in the show’s history.
The theme of this year’s event, inspiring the next generation, allowed the industry to address the technical, business and people challenges it faces now and into the future. At the heart of this is the need to attract and encourage the next generation of talent into the industry.
It also sent out a very clear message that the oil and gas industry has a future for many years to come.
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“I hope that the honest and open conversation we have had over the last few days will lead to real progress in this area. While we don’t have all the answers yet, it’s important we take this dialogue and turn it into a clear framework that can be delivered by the industry as a whole.”
With its emphasis on recognising the long-term need for a secure talent pipeline, the event ran ‘Inspire’, its largest ever programme of activities for a younger audience.
More than 400 school pupils from Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Highlands and Angus took part in three half-day workshops and site visits, which gave them an insight into the industry and the opportunity to meet young engineering professionals who shared their work experiences.
Michael Engell-Jensen, Executive Director, International Association of Oil & Gas Producers. said: “The keynote speakers, as well as the Inspire Programme, provided the next generation with plenty of inspiring reasons to join this industry.
“But, as (guest speaker) Professor Brian Cox mentioned, we also need to provide students with pathways to a career in oil and gas.
“I would like to see industry develop multi-year programmes to encourage schoolchildren to consider a career in this sector. And, for our newly qualified graduates, who have been caught out by the current economic difficulties, I am supportive of industry exploring ways to allow them to get work experience, something many graduates say would help them get their first job in the industry.”