ANALYSIS OF THE EDUCATIONAL SITUATION IN THE GLOBALLY EMERGING INDUSTRY OF FLEXIBLE, ORGANIC AND LARGE AREA ELECTRONICS
Currently, an industry is globally emerging which is dedicated to the development of a new type of electronics which can be thin, lightweight and flexible. Moreover, organic and large area electronics can be produced at low cost. This could revolutionize many branches of our economy whereas the new type of electronics does not claim to substitute the traditional electronics. Flexible, organic and large area electronics are additional to the traditional ones and they are prevailingly employed for new applications.
This new emerging flexible, organic and large area electronics industry is creating a high demand of new and well educated employees with specialized knowledge and skills. A concept for education and training within this field of work is currently being developed within the EU FP 7 project NoE FlexNet (Network of Excellence for building up Knowledge for improved Systems Integration for Flexible Organic and Large Area Electronics (FOLAE) and its exploitation).
Within FlexNet, 17 participants from 11 European countries work together. Their aim is to support Europe in strengthening its world leadership in flexible, organic and large area electronics. The project is structured in three platforms; first in FOLAE materials and device integration, second in systems integration and third in knowledge, dissemination and transfer to industry.
Regarding the knowledge platform, we want to report about first results of the project work. In order to be able to develop a concept for education and training in the field of flexible, organic and large area electronics, we carried out an inventory of already publicly available course in the field and moreover, we carried out a survey asking the industry via the Organic Electronics Association (OE-A) about their educational needs in the field. This paper presents a summary of the development of the project work and describes the most relevant outcomes regarding the `mapping` and the survey.