4th Global Youth Employment Summit in Azerbaijan

4th Global Youth Employment Summit

YES Azerbaijan 2008

On 24-27 September 2008, the Fourth Global Youth Employment Summit (YES) assembled in Baku, Azerbaijan, to reaffirm the essential message articulated in the previous YES summits held in Egypt (2002), Mexico (2004) and Kenya (2006) and to begin preparing for the new initiatives of the 2010 YES Summit in Sweden. Between now and 2010, YES hopes to empower its networks to attain its ambitious goal of creating 2 million employment opportunities by 2012.

The Summit was hosted by the Republic of Azerbaijan through the Ministry of Youth and Sport in partnership with Youth Employment Systems (YES). In attendance, were roughly 600 delegates (including 30 government delegations) from nearly 75 countries.

A UNESCO-UNEVOC representative made a substantive contribution to the Summit and presented the work of the Centre to aid UNESCO Member States in improving employability and citizenship.

In addition, UNESCO-UNEVOC was invited to present a keynote address at a Ministers’ Forum that took place in the context of the Summit. The address covered the following issues:

  • The importance of TVET for youth from both developed and developing countries;
  • The key issues related to youth employment that need to be addressed concerning strengthening and upgrading TVET;
  • The importance of international involvement in TVET for youth aiming for the productive employment and better citizenship, and the critical role of UNESCO-UNEVOC; and
  • Suggestions for moving forward with particular reference to promoting partnership with key actors, including the private sector.
The Minister’s Forum was chaired by the Minister Youth and Sport of Azerbaijan, and moderated by the Deputy Minister of Economic Development. Ministers of Education, of Youth and Sport, as well as of Labour from Nepal, India, Morocco, Namibia, South Africa, Uganda, Tanzania, Egypt, and Azerbaijan were in attendance. In addition, representatives from various international organizations, including the president of YES, the ILO Sub-regional Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia, and regional representatives from ETF, UNICEF and UNDP participated in the meeting.

Improving the employability and skills of youth is an integral component to both the work of UNESCO and to the UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre. Youth represent a vital force with the potential to initiate change. Their full participation in our societies is crucial to shaping the future of our world. According to the 2007 United National World Youth Report, youth (or those aged 15-24) constitute approximately 18 per cent of the world’s population. By 2025, the number of youth is estimated to grow by a staggering 72 million, making this generation the largest in history.

UNESCO's objective is to help empower youth by reaching out and responding to their expectations in order to foster useful and long-lasting skills. In order to ensure this objective, UNESCO supports the following initiatives:

  • The participation of young people in UNESCO's actions and those of partner organizations;
  • Partnerships between UNESCO and young people;
  • Integration of young people's concerns and expectations into choices made by member states concerning the fields of education, science, culture and communication.
UNESCO's strategy for acting with and for youth was developed based on the World Programme of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1995.

The UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre is also geared to promoting the development of life skills and to empowering participation in the world of work for youth. In particular, UNESCO-UNEVOC seeks to provide technical advice on integrating skills development in basic education programmes, particularly within the context of EFA; promotes a competency-based approach to education and training; trains teachers and trainers to adopt a life skills-based approach in the classroom; and develops training packages on cross-cutting skills such as entrepreneurship.


YES Summit 2008 Azerbaijan

page date 2010-06-07

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