Youth Aspirations and the Reality of Jobs in Developing Countries
Mind the Gap
Many governments in developing countries are realising that good quality jobs matter
for development. However, little attention has been paid so far to explore what actually
matters for young people in terms of job characteristics and employment conditions.
Today, in many developing and emerging countries, a key development challenge is that
existing jobs do not live up to youth aspirations.
This study revisits youth labour market performance and the quality of jobs in developing
countries. It places youth employment preferences at the forefront and answers the
following questions. What is the nature of youth careers aspirations and job-related
drivers of job satisfaction? What shapes such employment preferences? How likely will
young people be able to meet their job aspirations? What policy makers can do to reduce
the gap between youth preferences and the reality of jobs?
The study draws on the comprehensive data from school-to-work transition surveys in
32 developing and transition countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America.
It suggests a number of priority areas for policy makers to enhance youth well-being,
raise labour productivity, and contain the chilling effects that unmet youth aspirations
can generate on society.
Published on November 16, 2017
In series:Development Centre Studiesview more titles