Young people globally are almost three times more likely to be unemployed than adults. They are also particularly vulnerable to insecure and poorly paid jobs. This page summarises some of the key evidence around Youth Entrepreneurship and Employment.
- DCED Synthesis Note: Youth employment
- Key overview documents
- Training for youth in skills
- Wage subsidies for youth
- Support to youth to be entrepreneurs
- ICTs for youth employment
- Youth employment in conflict-affected areas
- Youth employment in agricultural and rural areas
- Measuring the results of youth employment interventions
- Other useful resources
DCED Synthesis Note: Youth employment
For a summary of key research on using private sector development to assist young people, download the DCED Synthesis Note.
Key overview documents
- Interventions to Improve the Labour Market Outcomes of Youth: A Systematic Review of Training, Entrepreneurship Promotion, Employment Services and Subsidised Employment Interventions, ILO, 2016. This systematic review covers 107 interventions in 31 countries. The authors conclude that while active labour market policies targeting youth do pay off, they are an investment that needs time to grow. The results are summarised in the following blog: Four ways to maximise the effectiveness of youth employment programs. Johan Kluve, 2017.
- Youth & Transferable Skills Evidence Gap Map, 3ieImpact. The purpose of this evidence gap map is to provide easy access to the best available evidence on the outcomes of transferable skills programming for youth in low- and middle-income countries and to highlight where there are important gaps in this evidence base.
- Meeting the Youth Employment Challenge in Africa – Six Myths, World Bank, 2014. This Blog post by Louise Fox, 2014 tackles some of the common misconceptions around youth employment in Africa. Fox argues that there has been an unhelpful focus urban unemployment. She believes that rural and agricultural employment will form an important part of alleviating youth unemployment in the continent.
- Youth Employment: What can be learnt from international experience with youth employment programmes?, EPS PEAKS, 2013. This literature review assesses best practice in and learning from youth employment programmes in developing countries. The review focuses on understanding the private sector led or driven youth employment programmes, and not especially on training.
- Youth Employment in Developing Countries, IZA, 2013. This paper, commissioned by the European Commission, aims to identify the key challenges in relation to youth employment in developing countries and provide recommendations on how EU development cooperation could support the youth employment agenda.
Training for youth in skills
- Youth at Work: Building Economic Opportunities for Young People in Africa, MasterCard Foundation, 2015.
- Impact of an Adolescent Girls Employment Programme: The EPAG Project in Liberia, The World Bank, 2014.
- TVET Interventions to Improve Employability and Employment of Young People in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: A Systematic Review, Campbell Systematic Reviews, Janice Tripney et al., 2013.
- Review of policies to strengthen skills-employment linkages for marginalised young people, ODI, 2012.
Wage subsidies for youth
- What works in wage subsidies for young people: A review of issues, theory, policies and evidence. ILO, 2015.
- A youth wage subsidy experiment for South Africa, 3ie, 2014.
Support to youth to be entrepreneurs
- Economic Recovery Assessment. Focus on Traders in Western Area Urban and Kenema, Sierra Leone, Mercy Corps, 2015.
- Skills and Youth Entrepreneurship in Africa: Analysis with Evidence from Swaziland, AfDB, 2014.
- Maximising the impact of youth entrepreneurship support in different contexts, YBI and ODI, 2013.
- Generation Entrepreneur? The state of global youth entrepreneurship, YBI, 2013.
- Stimulating Managerial Capital in Emerging Markets: The Impact of Business and Financial Literacy for Young Entrepreneurs, The World Bank, 2013.
- Employment Generation in Rural Africa: Mid-Term Results from an Experimental Evaluation of the Youth Opportunities Program in Northern Uganda, DIW Berlin, 2013.
ICTs for youth employment
- Landscape Review: Mobiles for Youth Workforce Development, mEducation Alliance, 2013.
- Analysis of ICT-Enabled Youth Employment in Ghana, Kenya and South Africa, Rockefeller Foundation, 2013
- Connecting to Work: How Information and Communication Technologies Could Help Expand Employment Opportunities, The World Bank, 2013.
Youth employment in conflict-affected areas
For more information, visit the DCED knowledge page on PSD in Conflict-Affected Environments.
- Youth employment in fragile countries, ECDPM, February 2017.
- Amarasuriya, Gündüz and Mayer (2009) Rethinking the Nexus between Youth, Unemployment and Conflict – Perspectives from Sri Lanka, International Alert.
Youth employment in agricultural and rural areas
- Young Africa Works – Agricultural Transformation in Africa (Summit Report), MasterCard Foundation, 2017.
- Young people, agriculture, and employment in rural Africa, UNU Wider, 2014.
- Agriculture as a Sector of Opportunity for Young People in Africa, World Bank, 2013.
- Africa’s got work to do. Employment prospects in the new century, IMF, 2013.
- Collaborating with Young People in Rural Mountain Areas: A Dynamic Reference Guide on Youth Employment, Aga Khan Foundation, 2011.
Measuring the results of youth employment interventions
- Interventions to Improve the Labour Market Outcomes of Youth: A Systematic Review of Training, Entrepreneurship Promotion, Employment Services and Subsidised Employment Interventions, ILO, August 2016
- Self-employment programmes for young people: A review of the context, policies and evidence, ILO, 2015.
- A youth wage subsidy experiment for South Africa, 3ie Impact Evaluation, 2014.
- Testing What Works in Youth Employment: Evaluating Kenya’s Ninaweza Program, Global Partnership for Youth Employment, 2013.
- Digital Opportunity Trust Internship Programme, MasterCard Foundation, 2013.
- Youth Employment Programs: An Evaluation of World Bank and IFC Support, IEG, 2012.
- Measuring Success of Youth Livelihood Interventions: A Practical Guide to Monitoring and Evaluation, Global Partnership for Youth Employment, 2011.
Other useful resources
- ILO’s What Works in Youth Employment website
- IDB’s Youth Employment Inventory (database of comparative information on youth employment interventions worldwide)
- ILO Youth Employment Programme
- The MasterCard Foundation Youth Learning
- ILO and The MasterCard Foundation Work4Youth
- SDC e&i network resources on vocational skills development