The OECD Career Readiness project is designed to provide new advice to governments, schools, employers and other stakeholders on how to best prepare young people to visualise and plan their futures in in labour markets that are being disrupted by digitalisation of work tasks, inflation, impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic and economic responses to climate change. Drawing on new analysis of international datasets, the project identifies career-related factors that make a difference to young people’s success in adult employment.

PISA data shows that schools in most countries can do much more to help young people navigate their school-to-work transitions, better competing for available employment.

The project reviews existing studies of national longitudinal datasets and undertakes new analysis of PISA data to demonstrate how young people’s employment outcomes are linked to the ways in which they as teenagers:

  • explore their potential futures in work
  • experience workplaces through and/or outside of their schools
  • think about their futures in employment

Effective education systems will equip young people with the tools and resources they need to critically connect their classroom experiences to future imagined selves, underpinning the agency through their transitions which many societies now demand. The project team published analysis of national longitudinal datasets and related guidance for practice and policy.

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Young people today have never left education more ambitious or highly qualified, but even before the pandemic many struggled to find attractive work. The disruptions of the COVID-19 crisis has made it still more urgent for schools to provide students with the tools and resources they need to prosper as they move through education and into the labour market.

PISA shows that the career ambitions of young people are commonly narrow, confused and distorted by social background. Analysis of national longitudinal datasets highlights ways in which different career guidance interventions can be expected to benefit students through their transitions.

The OECD Career Readiness project highlights practical examples how schools are helping young people prepare for their futures.

Career readiness is a shared responsibility. Families, schools, employers and governments all have roles to play. Get in touch to keep updated, share examples of effective practice and help shape future work:

Contact: [email protected] and [email protected]

Twitter: @AnthonyMannOECD

Personal data protection: Learn more about personal data protection in the Career Readiness project.