Youth and skills


© UNDP in Europe and Central Asia
Across the world in the last decade youth unemployment rates have increased. One of the main reasons for high youth unemployment globally is a growing mismatch between the supply and demand for skills, which is disproportionately affecting young people, particularly in developing countries. This skills mismatch can take different forms: some countries for example may experience an excess supply of skilled workers with a shortage of skilled jobs; in others young people may simply lack the basic skills, e.g. literacy and numeracy skills, which would enable them to find jobs or start their own business. Since young people comprise a large and growing proportion of the world’s working-age population, their employment prospects affect future economic growth. And of course, prolonged unemployment can have a devastating effect on young people’s economic and personal welfare and self-esteem.

UNESCO-UNEVOC believes that TVET has a key role to play in tackling youth unemployment. TVET’s orientation towards the world of work and the acquisition of employable skills means that it is well placed to overcome the skills mismatches that have impeded smooth education to employment transitions for many young people.

The topic of youth and skills was selected by Members of the UNEVOC Network as a priority theme in 2012. In the broader theme of skills for young people, UNESCO-UNEVOC’s work has focused in particular on school-to-work transition and entrepreneurship education.

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page date 2014-09-04

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