P. 1
Youth Employment Programs

Youth Employment Programs

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Youth employment issues are a major concern for many countries because they have
negative effects on the welfare of young people, and may also adversely affect economic
performance and social stability. This is the first Independent Evaluation Group (IEG)
evaluation of the World Bank Group’s support to countries trying to address youth employment
issues.

The World Bank lending portfolio for youth employment is relatively small, although
components of programs appear in 57 countries. Most projects include interventions in
skills development and school-to-work transition. Half of the projects include interventions
to foster job creation and work opportunities for youth.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has a broad approach to job creation. Between
FY01and FY11, youth employment was not specifically targeted, except in the
Middle East and North Africa region and in a small number of other interventions. IFC
invested $500 million to 50 investment operations and 18 advisory services to education.
Although youth employment is addressed in the education, social protection, and labor
strategies, it is not recognized as an issue in most country strategies - even where youth
unemployment is serious. Youth employment is a multisectoral issue, but few youth employment
projects are implemented by multisectoral teams.

Evidence on what works in youth employment is scarce. Known factors that contribute
to success are a comprehensive approach including participation of the private sector,
monitoring and follow up of individual participants, and complementary interventions,
such as combined training with job search and placement assistance, rather than isolated
interventions. In high-unemployment environments, wage subsidies, skills training, and
job search support are of little impact; and demand-side interventions are needed. Strong
diagnostics are important to design interventions for youth in low-income areas. The
Bank’s few impact evaluations on youth employment examine short-term effects, find
limited positive results, and do not calculate the cost-effectiveness of interventions.
The evaluation makes two recommendations: (i) apply an evidence-based approach to
youth employment operations, and (ii) at the country level, take a strategic approach
to youth employment by addressing the issue comprehensively, working across World
Bank Group teams, with governments and other donors. There is a critical need to
strengthen evidence-based feedback loops to the strategic planning process.
Youth employment issues are a major concern for many countries because they have
negative effects on the welfare of young people, and may also adversely affect economic
performance and social stability. This is the first Independent Evaluation Group (IEG)
evaluation of the World Bank Group’s support to countries trying to address youth employment
issues.

The World Bank lending portfolio for youth employment is relatively small, although
components of programs appear in 57 countries. Most projects include interventions in
skills development and school-to-work transition. Half of the projects include interventions
to foster job creation and work opportunities for youth.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has a broad approach to job creation. Between
FY01and FY11, youth employment was not specifically targeted, except in the
Middle East and North Africa region and in a small number of other interventions. IFC
invested $500 million to 50 investment operations and 18 advisory services to education.
Although youth employment is addressed in the education, social protection, and labor
strategies, it is not recognized as an issue in most country strategies - even where youth
unemployment is serious. Youth employment is a multisectoral issue, but few youth employment
projects are implemented by multisectoral teams.

Evidence on what works in youth employment is scarce. Known factors that contribute
to success are a comprehensive approach including participation of the private sector,
monitoring and follow up of individual participants, and complementary interventions,
such as combined training with job search and placement assistance, rather than isolated
interventions. In high-unemployment environments, wage subsidies, skills training, and
job search support are of little impact; and demand-side interventions are needed. Strong
diagnostics are important to design interventions for youth in low-income areas. The
Bank’s few impact evaluations on youth employment examine short-term effects, find
limited positive results, and do not calculate the cost-effectiveness of interventions.
The evaluation makes two recommendations: (i) apply an evidence-based approach to
youth employment operations, and (ii) at the country level, take a strategic approach
to youth employment by addressing the issue comprehensively, working across World
Bank Group teams, with governments and other donors. There is a critical need to
strengthen evidence-based feedback loops to the strategic planning process.

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Publish date: Dec 17, 2012
Added to Scribd: Dec 14, 2012
Copyright:AttributionISBN:9780821397947

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02/05/2016

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9780821397947

Demand-side: Fostering job
creation/work opportunities (I)

Smoothing school-to-work transition
and job mobility (L)

Supply-side: Fostering skill development
and labor market relevance of skills (E)

• Improving the business and

investment climate
• Regulations to encourage the hir-
ing of young people

• Fostering self-employment and

entrepreneurship

• Training in entrepreneurship or

business management

• Support to start businesses and

farms

• Providing wage subsidies
• Direct job creation (public works

programs)

• Counseling, job search skills, infor-
mation on vacancies, placement

• Improving information on the labor

market

• Program for overseas employment

of young people

• Improving the quality of formal tech-
nical and vocational education and

training (TVET)
• Expanding/improving work-based

learning in vocational and apprentice-
ship schemes

• Certifcation of skills
• Remedial education/second chance/

non-formal technical and vocational
training programs

• Providing information on training
• Training subsidies and vouchers
• Support for transportation and change

of residence

Source: IEG.

• The Bank’s rigorous evaluations of youth employment interventions examine short-
term effects, fnd limited positive results, and do not calculate the costs and cost-
effectiveness of interventions. The few studies of the employment effect of Bank-sup-
ported short-term skills building for unemployed youth suggest questionable results.

• IFC identifed youth employment as an issue in the Middle East and North Africa
starting in the mid-2000s. The recent regional strategy pays particular attention to
youth. A few IFC projects sought to provide opportunities to youth, but evidence on
their contribution to youth employment is lacking.

• The results framework used by projects is weak and constrains the analysis of labor
market outcomes for these projects.

Chapter Highlights

What is the Evidence on the Effectiveness of Support to Youth Employment? 37

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