Making Cents International
Originally posted on Devex.com, September 22, 2014.
Making Cents International
According to the recently released United Nations report (“World Urbanization Prospects”), more than half of humanity now lives in cities. Today, 54% of the world’s population, 3.9 billion people, resides in urban areas, compared to only 30% back in 1950. The report predicts that cities will add an additional 2.5 billion people by 2050, with nearly 90% of this increase happening in Asia and Africa.
The youth employment challenge is a stubborn reality in all regions and nearly every country. Over 35 per cent of the estimated 201 million unemployed people today are youth (between the ages of 15 and 24).
Jun 23, 2017 (10:00am to 11:30am)
Social Impact will present final results of a USAID-funded six-year randomized control trial of the A Ganar workforce development program in Honduras. Implemented by Partners of the Americas, A Ganar uses sports-based life skills activities, vocational training, internships and follow-on support to combat youth unemployment.
World Economic Forum
These days, Abdel Hameed Sharara is a talented young entrepreneur whose determination is a source of motivation to everyone around him. But starting out with a misguided aspiration to attend law school, he was a perfect example of someone with untapped potential living in a region with diverse opportunities that cannot be accessed due to a lack of business education.
International Initiative for Impact Evaluation
In the context of global concerns about the economic exclusion of youth, efforts to facilitate youth access to decent jobs and financial services have become a development priority. This is particularly the case in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, where continued growth of the youth population has exacerbated pressures on education systems and labor markets. This has contributed to poor labor market outcomes for young people, increasingly characterized by high unemployment, underemployment and informality.
The demographic dividend has been touted as a potential source of growth for the African continent and its relatively young population. In the same vein, it comes with the challenge of employment creation that can absorb the large cohort of youth that is set to enter sub-Saharan
Africa’s labor markets in the approaching decades. Less positively, however, countries that fail to plan accordingly might miss these potential opportunities or the resulting youth bulge could increase the risk of social tension and other risks arising from high youth unemployment rates.
How can we provide employment to the 1.8 billion young people that live on this planet? Will we have enough jobs for all these young people? Will there be sufficient high-quality and high-productivity work, especially for women, who are often the most vulnerable when it comes to finding meaningful work? The size of the youth employment challenge – and opportunity – is enormous. That’s why we need all the help we can get.
Africa’s rise has not taken its young people along with it. Economies riding the resource boom of the last decade are coming back down with a thud, exposing that the steep rise in GDPs that lent itself to the “Africa rising” narrative did little for the continent’s youth. The youth bulge that was supposed to energize the continent’s resurgence is increasingly looking like a threat.
Currently, about 73 million youth worldwide are looking for work. Those who succeed in finding employment are typically hired into low-skilled, low-productivity positions, often in the informal sector. For those who don’t find work, the impact of long-term unemployment can be devastating and have long-lasting impacts, putting social cohesion at threat.