High-Impact Partnerships: Breaking Down the Skills Gap in LatAm

Watch this discussion on technological innovation and multi-sector partnerships.


  • Martín Burt, Executive Director, Fundación Paraguaya
  • Nelly Cetera, Partnerships Development Assistant & JA Alumna, JA Americas
  • Carolina Dolan Chandler, Chief Digital Officer, Globant
  • Sean Summers, Executive Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer, Mercado Libre
  • Noël Zemborain, President, JA Americas (moderator)
  • Maria Lourdes Teran, Vice President AS/COA Miami

"The opportunities that come with being able to open the doors for people are massive," said Carolina Dolan Chandler of Globant in a discussion about how strategic partnerships can play a role in bridging the skills gap in Latin America. In this Council of the Americas program in Miami, experts from Globant, Mercado Libre, Fundación Paraguaya, and Junior Achievement (JA) Americas emphasized the ability of both private and public sector entities to be a part of the solution.

Moderator Noël Zemborain of JA Americas asked about the role public-private partnerships play in addressing youth employment needs in the region. “Having more technology and other entrepreneurial companies showing the way is super important," responded Sean Summers of Mercado Libre. "We talk about the things that we want, impact, and scalability. We need the scalability the public sector can bring,” he concluded.

Nelly Cetera, a JA Americas Alumna, spoke about the need for youth to be a part of the decision-making process before the implementation stage. She suggested youth advisory councils and open consultations as two aspects of a more comprehensive regional strategy to enhance youth employability and address private sector talent shortages.

The discussion also touched upon the framing of the skills gap and how it should be approached. Martín Burt of Fundación Paraguaya believes there are other ways of looking at the problem of employment: the focus on "the future of the work" should shift to "the future of the worker" and where the opportunities are, he explained. Ultimately, Burt concluded that people must ask: “How can we move away from a reward-and-punishment system to one of agency and self-efficacy?”