STEM skills in the Capital Region of Denmark

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The technological development and new digital solutions provide the possibility to create fast-growth businesses of the future, increase productivity and maintain and develop good and well-paid jobs in Denmark. In order to take advantage of this growth potential, it is crucial that companies can hire employees with the right skills.

Companies need a wide range of skills at all educational levels. Technical and digital skills are increasingly becoming a part of all jobs and are necessary in order to succeed in the labour market and in society. At the same time, business and industry is increasingly demanding specialists for new technology, including engineers, computer scientists, IT specialists, biostatistics, electricians and other educations within STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). These skills are key to developing and maintaining Danish positions of strength in, among other things, life science, energy and climate and digital and automated production.

As a result, the government and the regional growth forums have paved the way for cooperation on a technology pact to meet the companies’ need to recruit qualified labour in areas such as smart production, digitisation and automation. The aim of a Danish technology pact is for more people to get an education or skills within STEM.

On the basis of this, the Capital Region of Denmark has asked Højbjerre Brauer Schultz to conduct an analysis of STEM skills in the Capital Region of Denmark.

The analysis is based on a number of quantitative data sources. These are register data from Denmark Statistics, the HBS Jobindex database and DREAM's projection of the regionally and educationally distributed workforce.

Main results

  • The supply of STEM skills:
    • The STEM workforce in the Capital Region of Denmark consisted of almost 180,000 individuals in 2016.
    • In 2016, 19% of the workforce in the Capital Region of Denmark had a STEM education. This share has fallen slightly from 2011 to 2016.
    • In 2016, 51% of the STEM workforce had a further education, while 49% had a vocational education.
  • The demand for STEM skills:
    • In 2016, there were approx. 173,000 individuals employed with a STEM education in the Capital Region of Denmark.
    • Over 50% of all the job postings that in 2016 were targeted for STEM skills in the Capital Region of Denmark, targeted people with ICT competencies.
    • The demand for STEM skills is greatest in Ballerup, Gladsaxe and Lyngby-Taarbæk, where up to 30% of the employed have a STEM education. By comparison, this is only true for 14% of the employed in the city of Copenhagen.
  • Projecting the supply and demand of STEM skills:
    • The STEM workforce in the Capital Region of Denmark is expected to fall by 7,000 people by 2030. This is mainly due to the fact that the number of people with vocational STEM education is expected to decline.
    • In all the demand scenarios used, there will be an unmet need for STEM labour until 2030. In the ‘neutral’ scenario, the need will be almost 25,000 people by 2030.
    • The unmet need for labour primarily concerns people with higher STEM education, where there is estimated to be an undersupply of over 21,000 people in 2030.


The study is commissioned by the The Capital Region of Denmark.


Højbjerre Brauer Schultz (2018): "STEM-kompetencer i Region Hovedstaden".