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The Department of Industrial Education of National Taiwan Normal University has led the development of the technical and vocational education (TVE) in Taiwan since its beginning. Establishing the first baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral program in TVE in Taiwan in 1953, 1965, and 1981, respectively, the Department has served as the cornerstone for the TVE system in Taiwan for 70 years, cultivating generations of teaching taskforce for skills-based senior high schools and beyond. In addition to assuming the pedagogical role, the Department has also served as the vehicle of scholarly work and policymaking by conducting cutting-edge research, partnering with the public and private sectors in workforce development, and collaborating with academic institutions across continents on research and policy development. In a nutshell, the Department is the backbone of TVE in Taiwan.

The Department is also fearlessly confronting the ever changing landscape of workforce development and industrial globalization. The COVID-19 pandemic has not only brought about a variety of uncertainties, but also prompted upward transformation and optimization at all levels. As such, by creating a platform for scholarly conversations across countries, this international conference aims to chart the new directions of all aspects of next-generation TVE in a global context. To begin with, as an educator cultivating next-generation workforce, this conference seeks critical revisions of TVE curriculum when we should prioritize equipping students with tools and skills to meet the coming challenges and lifelong learning. Establishing professional and quality courses in line with the future development of the industry should direct the curriculum reform. In turn, we ask how instruction can closely follow the latest innovation to keep learners at the front of technological advancement and to prepare them for leading the transformation. As such, we are curious about the best design and practice of teacher education that focuses on cultivating a tripartite identity of educators in TVE: professionals in the industry, educators in school, and professional educators that can quickly adapt to the fast-paced industrial evolution and swiftly react to global crises such as the COVID-19. Eventually, we invite further dialogues and ideas of the best practice of professional and career development for pre- and in-service teachers in TVE and workforce in the industry.