The vocational education and training system in Germany is characterised by a high degree of standardisation. This is linked with strong transparency and authoritativeness of occupational profiles and of vocational certificates within the education and employment system. These help to shape occupational biographies.Such merits are in a conflicting relationship with demands for greater flexibility in the system. The focus here is on matters relating to the permeability of educational pathways and on the adaptation of occupational profiles to shifts which are taking place in the economy and in society.This issue of BWP investigates the question as to the ways in which greater flexibility is useful or even necessary for an effective and modern VET system without, however, jettisoning fundamental principles (such as the principle of the regulated occupation). BWP shows solidarity with Ukraine and adapts its cover for this issue.