The goal of human resources development in APEC is to promote the well-being of all people and achieve sustainable and inclusive economic growth in the region.

The Human Resources Development Working Group (HRDWG), established in 1990, has played an important role in building the region’s human capacity and achieving this goal.

The HRDWG implements initiatives on education, labor and capacity building to develop human resources. It derives its mandate from APEC Leaders and Ministers as well as Labor and Education Ministers. The group’s mission is to share knowledge, experience, and skills to strengthen human resource development and promote sustainable economic growth.

The HRDWG conducts its projects through three networks:

  • Capacity Building Network (CBN)
  • Education Network (EDNET)
  • Labour and Social Protection Network (LSPN).

The following objectives guide the three HRDWG networks in achieving the HRDWG’s mission:

  • Develop 21st Century Knowledge and Skills For All
  • Integrate HRD into the Global Economy
  • Address the Social Dimensions of Globalization.

Recognizing that human resources development is a cross-cutting issue, the HRDWG has been coordinating with several APEC working groups including the Committee on Trade and Investment (CTI), the Economic Committee (EC), the Small and Medium Enterprises Working Group (SMEWG), the Emergency Preparedness Working Group (EPWG), and the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC).

Points of collaboration include building human capital for business sectors; implementing the APEC New Strategy for Structural Reform (ANSSR); conducting disaster reduction education; and conducting skills mapping research exercises in the APEC region.

The HRDWG also cooperates with other international organizations such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO) in the areas of labor and social protection and foreign language education and training.

For more information, see the Human Resources Development Working Group web blog.

Current Activities


HRDWG is currently headed by the Acting Deputy Lead Shepherd, Ms Daria Rybakova (Russia).”

HRDWG Annual Meeting:

The 37th HRDWG meeting was held on May 14-17, 2015 in Boracay, Philippines.

Key results of 37th HRDWG:

  • Adopted the Work Plan 2015
  • Adopted the Terms of Reference-TOR
  • Agreed with the appointment of a Deputy Lead Shepherd from the same economy of the LS and different gender.  
  • Discussed on the preparation to the 6th  APEC Education Ministerial Meeting, (2016)
  • Agreed on the establishing of a Preparatory Committee to deal with the 6th AEMM with participation of LS team, network coordinators (EDNET, LSPN, and CBN), the Philippines, Korea, Peru and Russia. All economies were welcomed to participate in the Committee

Workshop during the 37th HRDWG:

Workshop on enhancing labour mobility in the APEC region (Australia) Boracay, May 16 2015.

CBN and LSPN delegates met on 16 May to hold a joint workshop on enhancing labour mobility in the APEC region.  The workshop was an opportunity to focus on a major task identified by APEC Leaders and Ministers: enhancing labour mobility. Viet Nam, as host of the 2014 APEC HRD Ministerial Meeting, recapped on the outcomes of the meeting and the steps they are taking to reform their economy. Australia outlined a project that it is leading in 2015 on enhancing labour mobility in the APEC region, with the workshop to inform the project.


Investing in Human Capital Development: 2 Initiatives:

  1. “High Level Policy Dialogue on Human Capacity Building” (HLPD-HCB) Meeting, PNG May -6-7, 2015.  The theme of the HLPD-HCB was “Investment in Human Capital Building Inclusive Economies” The presentations and statements were focus in this theme.

Outcome: “Port Moresby Joint Statement on the 2015 High Level Policy Dialogue on Human Capacity Building”

The Joint Statement called on the APEC economies to pursue strategic courses of action and to encourage and support the initiatives to develop and harness the full capacities of the region’s workforce, building more inclusive economies: -Developing the 21st Century Workforce: Key to inclusive and sustainable Growth, -Aligning Education and Training to Industry Needs in the 21st Century: Strategic approaches. -Enhancing skills of SME workers: Critical to Competitiveness and Linking to Global Value Chain.     Also, high level representatives agreed to promote a closer link between human capacity building, employment and the needs of business to enhance productivity and development

See news release:

  1. “The 1st High-Level Policy Dialogue on Science and Technology in Higher Education” (HLPD-STHE), Manila, 13-14 August 2015.  The theme was “Developing 21th Century Innovators for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth”

Outcome: Adoption of a Joint Statement which sets out initial commitments across two broad areas:

  • Mobility of Science, Technology and Innovation Experts

  • Advancing Cross-Border Education and Inter-University Collaboration

    The dialogue had five sessions on different priorities: Food Production and Security; Environment, Disaster Preparedness, Climate Change and Energy; Marine Resources; Smart Analytics and Engineering Innovation; Health System.

2015 Leaders Declaration:

Investing in Human Capital Development:

“We therefore instruct our officials to work closely with businesses, education and training providers, employment services, and civil society to understand the skills needed by the industry and to develop education and training programs that will equip people with the skills and competencies to join the workforce and fulfill their potential

We underscore the synergy between our ambition to improve human capital development and our goals to improve people-to-people connectivity and to continue the promotion of cross-border cooperation in education. We welcome the early realization of our 2020 student mobility target of 1 million intra-APEC university-level students per year.  We also recognize the close correlation between human capital development and progress in ICT and its benefits”

APEC Education Ministerial Meeting (AEMM)  

The 6th AEMM will be held in Lima Peru on October, 4-6 2016. It will be co-chaired by Peru, as host and Russia and organized in coordination with the HRDWG and its networks: EDNET, LSPN, and CBN.

The objective is advance the work on cross-border education, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education, educational innovation, work-integrated learning, qualifications frameworks among others.

2016: Human Resources Development Working Group (HRDWG):

The 38th APEC HRDWG meeting will be held in Arequipa, Peru on May 2016 at the margins of SOM2.  

Projects and initiatives during 2014/2015

HRD 01 2015: Healthy Women, Healthy Economies-Expanding Opportunities for Women in the Global Economy (USA)

See news releases:

HRD 02 2015: Global Competencies and Economic Integration (USA)

HRD 01 2015 S: Expand Cooperation among APEC Economies throughout Language Education- Stage II Innovative Modes of Cooperation for APEC Cross Border Education (Self-fund) China.

HRD 02 2015 S:   Developing Education for Future Planning with Mathematics and Science on the APEC Lesson Study Community. (Self- fund)  Japan, Thailand.

HRD 03 2015 S: Improving APEC’s Data Collection on Cross-Border Student Mobility in Higher Education.  (Self-fund) (USA, Australia)

HRD 04 2015 S: APEC Researcher Mobility Workshop (Australia) (Self-fund)

HRD 05 2015 S: Integrated Referencing Framework for Skills Recognition and Mobility (Self- fund) Australia.

HRD 06 2015 S: 4th APEC Conference on Cooperation in Higher Education in Asia-Pacific Region- (Self-fund) Russia.

HRD 01 2014 A: Systematic Design of Green Skills (China)

HRD 02 2014 T: Strategic Human Resource Management for Successful Foreign Investment in APEC (Japan)

HRD 03 2014 T Strengthening Mobility and Promoting Regional Integration of Professional Engineers in APEC (Chinese Taipei)

HRD 04 2014: Observatory of Best Practices with ICT: Proficiency Standards, Teaching-Learning Strategies in Urban and Rural Areas, Educational Material (Peru)


Daria Rybakova (Ms)
Romy Tincopa (Ms)
Program Director
APEC Secretariat Email:


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