Vocations and Learning

, Volume 12, Issue 1, pp 129–154 | Cite as

Dual Apprenticeships in Spain – Catalonia: The Firms’ Perspective

  • Anika JansenEmail author
  • Pilar Pineda-Herrero
Original Paper


This article analyzes the motives for firms providing apprenticeship training in Catalonia and the reasons why other firms do not provide such training. In light of the recent introduction of dual apprenticeships in the formal education system in Spain, a country with a traditionally school-based vocational education and training (VET) system, Catalonia constitutes a relevant case for analyzing firms’ training motives in newly established training systems. We analyzed the statements of about 800 Spanish companies in Catalonia who participated in the study. These included both companies that provide training and those that do not. The results show that companies perceive dual training more as an activity to ensure the supply of skilled workers in the future and less as a means to profit from the apprentices’ productivity. Large firms are especially able to better integrate initial training in their continuous training process and to make use of positive synergies. The reasons for the absence of training have more to do with a lack of knowledge about the dual apprenticeship program than with a fear of losing investments in human capital. The results of this article provide relevant contributions to the discussion about the implementation of dual apprenticeship systems in countries with a different framework of conditions as opposed to those countries with established dual apprenticeship systems. Moreover, they provide relevant insights for the development of policies to foster firms’ provision of dual apprenticeships.


Dual apprenticeships Spain/Catalonia Training motives Training benefits Educational transfer Work-based learning Occupation Young people 



This work was supported by a postdoc fellowship of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). The Fundación Bertelsmann, Departament d’Ensenyament de la Generalitat de Catalunya, Consell de Cambres de Catalunya, PIMEC i FOMENT provided the access to the data bases.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departament de Pedagogia Sistemàtica i SocialUniversitat Autònoma de BarcelonaBellaterraSpain
  2. 2.German Economic InstituteCologneGermany

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