Social and welfare issues

Faces of Joblessness - Towards People-centred Employment Support


The lives and circumstances of jobless people, or those with intermittent, low-paid or unstable employment, are rarely simple. They are often confronted with complex and inter-related employment barriers, such as skills deficiencies, health problems, financial disincentives or care responsibilities. Understanding these barriers is essential for designing policy interventions to overcome them, but systematic and good-quality information on the nature and extents of employment obstacles is currently missing.

 A typology of employment barriers

Faces of Joblessness - Typology of employment barriers




Most face not one barrier, but many

Faces of Joblessness - Most face not one barrier, but many

Shares with different numbers of simultaneous barriers.
Faces of Joblessness in Ireland. 

The Faces of Joblessness project (see 2-page project flyer) seeks to fill this gap and shed light on the web of individual barriers that stand in the way of stable employment and stronger labour markets. The main objective is to assist policymakers in identifying untapped sources of employment growth, in tailoring and targeting social and employment support in a people-centred manner, and in making existing programmes more cost-effective.



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This project was undertaken with the financial assistance of the European Union Programme for Employment and Social Innovation “EaSI” (2014-2020, EC-OECD grant agreement VS/2016/0005, DI150038).


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