By the Blouin News Business staff

Tackling youth unemployment around the world

by in Global Economy.


Whether the worst of the global financial crisis is over or not there are plenty of lingering issues that are still hurting national economies. High levels of youth unemployment around the world is among the worst consequences of the meltdown in developed nations and remains a vast problem in emerging economies. Tackling youth unemployment is a haunting task for governments around the world who seem incapable of drafting policies to approach the problem. The International Labor Organization says that the global youth unemployment rate was 12.7% in 2012, and it projects that it is likely to rise to 12.9% by 2017.

It’s clear that the number of young and jobless will only get worse. “Roughly 10 to 12 million sub-Saharan African youth enter the labor market every single year. While this growth provides the opportunity for a demographic divided—where the number of working-age people outweighs the number of dependents—it also presents the risk for soaring rates of youth unemployment,” write Brandon Routman and John McArthur  in a Brookings blog entry. In the United Kingdom the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR), a think tank, recently said that a full-blown economic recovery will not resolve the U.K.’s youth unemployment problem and highlight the ever growing problem: the great mismatch between what young people are training for and the types of jobs available.

ManpowerGroup, a U.S. based multinational human resource consulting firm has published an info-graphic which shows what they are doing around the world to tackle youth unemployment. It has also published a report that could perfectly fit into the reading list of leaders around the world: How Policymakers Can Boost Youth Employment.

The Wall Street Journal pointed out in July that “although Europe’s debt crisis has sent the overall number of unemployed under 25’s to new highs, the proportion of under 25’s out of work compared with over 25’s has been falling steadily since the mid 1990’s.” However the numbers tell a different story since youth unemployment levels are terribly high. “In Spain, for example, it has skyrocketed since the start of the crisis in 2007 and is still a stubbornly high 26.1%. In Italy it’s currently 12.2%, Greece 27.3%. It’s a similar story in Portugal, and not much better in Ireland,” it reads.

Even as a matter of concern around the world, leaders have not delivered. The clock is ticking as the unemployment levels are high. A mix that can quickly bring those affected to choose other options. Here is another list of proposals for policy makers in order to address the youth unemployment crisis by Elisabeth Jacobs:

1.     Fully fund community colleges

2.     Expand and revise the Registered Apprenticeships program at the Department of Labor

3.     Establish Career Internship Standards

4.     Expand the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to younger workers.

5.     Increase the size of the AmeriCorps

6.     Appropriate funds for the Youth Opportunity (YOG) Program

7.     Overhaul school dropout prevention policies by offering them programs that lead to employment

8.     Fully fund and reform Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs in high schools

9.     Expand current mentoring programs

10.  Create incentives for public private partnerships to benefit young unemployed people

11.  Seek input from the private sector

12.  Renew the financial commitment to current programs that reconnect young adults to education and employment opportunities.