Skip to main content


ESCO governance

DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion is managing the development and updating of the ESCO classification. To this end, it is supported by external stakeholders and the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop).

Main stakeholders

Shaping ESCO into an up-to-date, practical tool can only be done from the bottom up, through the active involvement of people from the education and training sector as well as from the labour market. Stakeholders contributing to the development of the classification include:

  • employment services
  • providers of job boards, social media, HR software or career guidance services
  • social partners
  • education and training organisations
  • statistical organisations, researchers and big data analysts
  • Skills councils and networks


Stakeholder and Member State involvement

The Commission is involving stakeholders and Member States in various ways:

  • The ESCO Member States Working Group is composed of representatives from Member States on employment and education and training affairs and representatives from European social partners. It advises and supports the Commission on the implementation and development of ESCO and ensures its interoperability with the national classification systems on employment;
  • The ESCO Board was made up of senior representatives from the stakeholders concerned and provided the project with strategic advice between 2011 and 2016;
  • The ESCO Maintenance Committee consists of technical classification experts. It contributes to the development and quality assurance process;
  • The Sectoral Reference Groups were composed of sectoral experts from the labour market and education and training sectors and provided input for the development of ESCO v1 between 2011 and 2015;
  • The Cross-Sector Reference Group consisted of experts in employment and education, related standards and classifications and an up-to-date knowledge of relations between education and training and the labour market. It deals with cross-sectoral skills and competences, the consistency of the skills pillar and its relation to the qualification pillar;
  • In an online expert consultation stakeholders commented on occupational profiles in 2015 and 2016.