A leading Ontario-based research and consultancy firm, Dunn, Pierre, Barnett & Company Canada Ltd., is set to begin a major Labour Market Project in Guyana in early 2024, commissioned by the country’s Ministry of Education. This study aims to analyse the national workforce, identify skills gaps, and prepare for emerging economic sectors, including oil and gas, low-carbon technology, digital development, climate-resilient agriculture and ICT.
Grenada-born Dr. Justine C. Pierre, a director of the company and an ILO-trained Labour Statistician and Researcher, expressed enthusiasm in leading the project, highlighting the significance of such studies as foundational for a country’s socio-economic planning and development. He further emphasized that undertaking the research at this time is crucial to support Guyana’s transformation agenda as one of the fastest-growing world economies.
The “National Skills Audit Consultancy on Guyana Strengthening Human Capital Through Education Project” will support the Ministry of Education and the Council for TVET in developing a strategy for effective national labor market management. The project aligns with Guyana’s goal of understanding the skills landscape, enhancing workforce capabilities, and preparing for investments in education and TVET. The anticipated outcomes will benefit the government, employers, and both national and foreign workers. This initiative is driven by the ongoing economic transformation in Guyana and the imperative to develop the required human capital for sustainable, green, and inclusive growth.
The project will involve a rapid assessment of Guyana’s current workforce, with the goals of gaining a better understanding of skills demands and excess supply, equipping the labor force with the necessary skills, including digital and socioemotional skills, and facilitating planned investments in secondary education and technical and vocational education and training (TVET). The Canadian company will be responsible for collecting and analyzing relevant statistical and labour market data, as well as conducting surveys among employers and national institutions to identify labour shortages and available skills in the country.
Additionally, the survey will support the introduction of a new curriculum for Grades 7 to 9, the provision of textbooks for Grades 7-11, training for educators on teaching students with diverse needs, and the implementation of an instructional leadership and managerial programme for principals.
Dunn, Pierre, Barnett & Company Ltd., is committed to delivering a comprehensive final report on the survey results, providing insights on labour shortages, available skills, and concrete recommendations to enhance the future skills needs of Guyana. The company’s worldwide expertise in conducting labour market surveys, data collection, and data analysis, along with their experience in researching diverse communities with diverse cultural backgrounds, aligns with the requirements outlined by the Guyana government in its selection process and positions the firm to deliver the expected results.
About Dunn, Pierre, Barnett & Company Canada Ltd.:
Dunn, Pierre, Barnett & Company Canada Ltd. is a full-service management, consulting, and technology firm specialising in collecting, disseminating, and analysing data, including administrative, primary, labor force, and migration data on diverse populations globally. With over 15 years of experience, the company has conducted extensive research on Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) populations across Canada, the USA, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Notably, the firm has conducted numerous studies in the fields of Labor Market Needs Assessment, Statistics, Labour, Migration, and Human Trafficking in the Caribbean Region and Canada.
Dr. Pierre, a company team member, advocates for labour market needs assessments among Canada’s estimated 1.5 million Black population, highlighting the importance of gathering data for informed policy-making. Upwards of 40 countries, including several Caribbean countries, have utilised the company’s services, including Belize, Dominica, St. Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, Suriname, Grenada, Jamaica, Antigua and Barbuda, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Dr. Pierre, a former student of the Grenada Boys’ Secondary School, expects other Caribbean countries and the Government of Canada to follow Guyana’s example by conducting labour market and skills needs assessments to obtain accurate data on their populations. He emphasised that according to the World Bank, a national labour market assessment is essential for the development of a country.
The team at Dunn, Pierre, Barnett & Company on this project, led by Dr. Pierre and supported by esteemed professionals such as Dr. Philomenia Harrison, retired Head of Statistics at CARICOM, Dr. Paulette Dunnpierre, CANTA and CARICOM, Regional expert on TVET, and Dr. Mark Bynoe, Economics, and Guyanese national will conduct the largest national skills audit ever conducted in the Caribbean region. The Guyana Statistical Bureau, the Guyana TVET Authority, and the Ministry of Education will also support the project. The six-month survey will employ a combination of desk and field research, including interviews and consultations with key Guyana government, private sector, academia, and civil society stakeholders.
The “National Skills Audit Consultancy” forms part of a broader Guyana government project, which includes the modernisation of the TVET sector. This initiative is financed through a US$44 million loan from the World Bank.