The pace of technological change is rendering many job activities — and the skills they require — obsolete. Research by McKinsey suggests that globally more than 50% of the workforce is at risk of losing their jobs to automation, and a survey by the World Economic Forum suggests that 42% of the core job skills required today will change substantially by 2022. In this landscape of constant disruption, individuals, companies, and governments are fighting to ensure they have the skills to remain competitive.

To shed light on the global skills landscape, Coursera recently released the first edition of our Global Skills Index (GSI) report. As the world’s largest platform for higher education, Coursera brings together 40 million learners around the world with over 3,000 courses from leading universities and companies. Leveraging the unique learning data from the platform, the Global Skills Index measures and ranks the skills of 60 countries that together account for 80% of the world’s population and 95% of global GDP. We also measure and rank the skills of 10 major global industries. (Although Coursera learners are surely not a perfectly representative sample, they are a particularly important group for analysis: those most motivated and able to improve their skill set. For more on how we calculate country and industry skill profiles, see the sidebar.)

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