2.1 Identifying Business Opportunities and Enterprising Youth

In supporting YED, practitioners frequently struggle with two key issues:

1.    Identifying high potential business opportunities in which youth may successfully engage.

2.    Recognizing and recruiting youth with the potential and interest to become entrepreneurs

Identifying viable business and employment opportunities is among the most significant challenges faced by the YED sector.  For example, the International Labor Organization’s (ILO) Youth Employment Network (YEN) discovered in a survey of ILO and World Bank-supported youth entrepreneurship projects that over 40 percent of the projects did not create any new jobs.  The ILO further found that training does not necessarily lead to a job and that there are “serial” trainees, those who continue to take courses without engaging in enterprise creation or meaningful employment.  Additionally, youth trainees who do not have exposure to high potential opportunities often land in subsistence activities, copy-catting businesses they see others undertaking, even when these businesses are operating in saturated markets.