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Offering guidance on the opportunities and threats for future generations, and featuring interviews with business leaders, this book provides a constructive look at change. It directs the youth to become job creators, not job seekers, and to approach the corporate and political worlds with an entrepreneurial mind-set.



Youth Unemployment—Background and Outlook


Chapter 1. The Youth Unemployment Crisis and the Threat of a “Generation Jobless”

The recent economic crisis, the worst since the Great Depression in the 1930s, has led to a disproportionate increase in youth unemployment around the world. Young people in both developed and developing economies are facing harsh labor market conditions. In 2013, more than 70 million young people were unemployed with even greater numbers not even being considered in these statistics because they either dropped out of the system or because they never entered it.
Peter Vogel

Chapter 2. Millennials and Digital Natives

With the introduction of the World Wide Web in 1991, the world began to change. Blogs started to pop up, the first search engines emerged, e-commerce sites and email services were established and, of course, the social networks and messaging services came into existence. Paired with the introduction of smartphones, the world would change for good. This technological revolution has transformed how people live, how they relate to one another, how they work, and even how they think and process information. Figure 2.1 summarizes some of the major technological inventions that have followed since the introduction of the World Wide Web and that have contributed to the characteristics of today’s youth—the Digital Natives.
Peter Vogel

Chapter 3. Trends and Outlook

What will the world of work look like in 2030? We are living through very dynamic times with important changes taking place in the world economy— changes that will have long-term consequences for the world of work. Among the ten patterns of change that we will be facing in the next 15 years, some are particularly relevant to the context of the youth labor market, including the demographic shift, economic turbulence, business 3.0, technology, generational crossroads, and rethinking talent, education, and training (Fast Future, 2008; Johnson Controls, 2009). The technological revolution, including ubiquitous technologies or 3D printing, will further accelerate the process that has been initiated with the development of personal computers, the Internet, email, social media, and smartphones.
Peter Vogel

From Crisis to Opportunity


Chapter 4. Entrepreneurship: Turning Job Seekers into Job Creators

Our view on the role of entrepreneurship in society and the economy has drastically changed over the last half century. While the common belief of the past was that established companies and not new ventures are the sole drivers of innovation, economic and societal prosperity, and job creation, we now know that this is not true and that entrepreneurship actually plays a central role (Audretsch, 2002; Acs, 2006; Van Praag & Versloot, 2007; Carree & Thurik, 2010).
Peter Vogel

Chapter 5. Addressing the Gap between the Education System and the Labor Market

Today’s young men and women are the future. While it may sound clichéd, it is important to make this realization. Our young people need to tackle the greatest challenges of the 21st century. They will determine the future of work and they will be responsible for guiding society forward. Considering the challenges that lie ahead, young people are now expected to have an entirely different skill set than any previous generation. They must be able to adapt and shape a rapidly changing world, and generate opportunities that never before existed. To invest in our future, we must give young people the sort of education that will enable them to find their place in a 21st century society. We are currently confronted with the paradoxical situation that despite the high rates of youth unemployment, employers in developed economies are complaining that they cannot find the skills that they need (Mourshed et al., 2014). As outlined earlier, this serves as evidence for the growing skills mismatch that we are experiencing. Educators can also step up and play their role in combating youth unemployment.
Peter Vogel

Chapter 6. Employers’ Contribution to Tackling Youth Unemployment

For many global organizations the recession is history and all effort is focused on growth and new investments. Yet as the economy recovers, the C-levels of these organizations are left to realize the workforce has changed and therefore their recruitment and retention strategies require systematic rethinking. In addition the youth unemployment crisis leaves a large proportion of the future workforce without a job, scarring them for life. Therefore, employers must not close their eyes to what is happening to their prospective future employees.
Peter Vogel

Chapter 7. Designing Active Labor Market Policies to Tackle Youth Unemployment

What if one percent of the bailout money that policymakers paid to bail out those who caused the recent financial crisis had been invested in youth employment initiatives? Would we still be seeing these exorbitant youth unemployment rates around the world? That is a question I had asked myself a few years back while writing an essay for the St. Gallen Symposium (Vogel, 2010). In 2013, at the verge of a generational meltdown, European policymakers finally started to make a move in this direction with large-scale programs such as the Youth Guarantee. But the question is whether such a reactive move could have been anticipated in order to avoid the situation we are in right now if policymakers had given youth a greater priority and not just those who have the biggest lobbying power? I guess that the question “could we have avoided it?” is asked after all major catastrophes.
Peter Vogel

Chapter 8. More Solutions

Chapters 4 to 7 focused on the different core stakeholder groups and associated proven solutions to tackle youth unemployment. The purpose of this chapter is to showcase even more solutions and solution ideas that have been suggested or implemented at a variety of related events I attended or networks I am involved with, including the Global Economic Symposium, the World Economic Forum Global Shapers community, the Skoll World Forum, the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on youth unemployment, solutions proposed by youth for youth, among others. In the following I will briefly share these solutions and solution ideas.
Peter Vogel

Chapter 9. Building Multi-Stakeholder Solutions for Youth Unemployment

Youth unemployment does not have to end in a catastrophe. But if we want to avoid a Generation Jobless we need to act quickly and implement both shortterm solutions for today’s youth and long-term solutions to avoid repeating what we are seeing today. In a recent contribution I made for the 2014 Global Economic Symposium (GES), I suggested that we have to tackle the world’s most pressing issues with a multi-stakeholder approach.
Peter Vogel


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