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Who’s doing what?

Study of the Landscape of the Youth Employment Field


Jamie McAuliffe of the Aspen Institute Forum for Community Solutions

The following funders have made youth livelihoods a strategic pillar of their work and make important contributions to address global youth unemployment


The following multi-stakeholder coalitions do similar work:

The following funders, governments, platforms & practitioner groups are testing new approaches to provide pathways from education to employment for unemployed youth.

Practitioners include: Employer-led Coalitions like:

Government Policy Initiatives like:

NGO specialists like: 

 Gaps in our Knowledge and Experience

  • Scale: We must prove the business case to employers to unlock higher levels of employer (… and government) contributions.
  • Lack of funding: ODAs have Request for Proposals(RFPs) that are complex and unrealistic; global-mindedcompanies and funders need partners with the demonstrated capacity and platformsto deliver at scale across multiple geographies.IYF and Youthbuild Intl. have such capacity but few others exist.
  • More researchneeded: The ILO’s What Works in Youth Developmentsite provides a very useful map of the existing evidence gaps. But more long-term impact assessment is needed to assess displacement and to discover how – if? – control groups catch up with the beneficiary groups.
  • Jobs are changing: The impact of digital technologies and their job creation potential are not well understood in the developing world. Accenture, Googleand the Chan/Zuckerberg Initiativeare among those addressing this knowledge gap;
  • Shared learning needed between developed and developing country experience: for example, several countries in Sub-Saharan Africa have launched national youth service programmesthat could benefit from dialogue and learning with their North American counterpart Similarly, developing country experience in fosteringyouth entrepreneurship has lessons for developed markets.
  • Lack of Metrics: Youth training programmeslack consistent metrics that allow cross-organizational comparison and cost-benefit analysis. This is a promising area on which government and NGOs might collaborate. McKinsey’s Generation Initiativeproposes a “cost per employed day” or CPED (Jaffar and Mourshed 2017) to capture training costs vs. number of days employed in first 6 months of work.
  • Migration: Many are discussing this issue but few have launched concerted efforts to address the economic needs of migrant and refugee populations.
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