Current, future nuclear energy workforce issues to highlight global meeting in South Korea

Published on May 30, 2018 by Aaron Martin

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Capabilities of the future nuclear workforce will be the focus of a four-day meeting drawing 600 attendees from 58 countries and six international organizations to Gyeongju, South Korea, this week.

The meeting, titled International Conference on Human Resource Development for Nuclear Power Programmes: Meeting Challenges to Ensure the Future Nuclear Workforce Capability, will focus on human resource development, nuclear power community workforce needs, and the future of the nuclear industry’s labor market.

“No matter how high-tech, automatized and digitized the machinery is, in the end, you need people to run it. Skilled people. People who have absorbed the safety culture in their hearts and minds,” Mikhail Chudakov, deputy director-general and head of the Department of Nuclear Energy at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), said. “Amidst the stiff competition between high-tech sectors, attracting and retaining a high-quality nuclear workforce is becoming challenging.”

The meeting will feature 12 sessions and four panel discussions focusing on attracting, recruiting and retaining a high-quality nuclear workforce, developing teams and individuals within organizations, continuing education and training, and how organizational culture impacts the workforce.

“Our experience is that every country has its own unique models for human resource development, and these are heavily influenced by economic, social and cultural factors,” Chudakov said.

Attendees will share information about national and international policies, discuss the importance of building competence in nuclear safety and security, and find solutions to meet the workforce needs of safe, sustainable nuclear power programs.