Observing World Youth Skills Day: Reflections from research in Sierra Leone - Blog by Jamelia Harris
World Youth Skills Day recognises the strategic importance of providing young people around the world with the necessary skills for employment, decent work and entrepreneurship. July 15th was first declared World Youth Skills Day by the United Nations General Assembly in 2014 and has been celebrated each year since. This year, the theme centres on “Skilling teachers, trainers and youth for a transformative future.”
IER team visited India for project launch workshop in spring 2019
In late April/early May Clare Lyonette, Gaby Atfield and Sudipa Sarkar visited India for the first of a series of workshops as part of the ESRC Global Challenges Research Fund project 'Inequalities and skills acquisition in young people: Identification of factors affecting successful outcomes in the DDU-GKY Indian skills programme for unemployed young people’.
The IER team was joined by Bhaskar Chakravorty, an IER PhD student and research assistant, and Himadri Sinha, co-investigator on the project, based at Xavier Institute of Social Service (XISS). During the first workshop visit, the IER team delivered workshops to Master's students at XISS on quantitative and qualitative research methods, as well as engaged with key local stakeholders.
Talent Match youth employment programme keynote
Gaby Atfield was invited to give a keynote speech at Talent Match Staffordshire's conference and awards ceremony in Lichfield on 22nd November 2018. Talent Match is a five-year, £108m Big Lottery-funded programme supporting young people who are furthest from the labour market, including hidden NEETs who are completely outside the benefits, work and training system, gain the skills they need to get into employment.
IER, in partnership with CRESR at Sheffield Hallam University, City-REDI at Birmingham University and Cambridge Economic Associates, have been evaluating the programme across the 21 youth unemployment hotspots in England since 2014.
The presentation on findings from the national evaluation can be found here.
Work experience, contacts and confidence needed to secure fulfilling employment, researchers find
A new study led by IER raises concerns that employment and career development opportunities for young people are becoming polarised between those with the resources to access secure, fulfilling employment and those on the path to precarious and unpredictable working lives with poor prospects.
The report, Present tense, future imperfect? Young people’s pathways into work was published on September 28. It presents the findings of a three-year study examining the youth labour market in the Midlands from the perspectives of young people themselves, and their employers. The project was conducted by a team led by Kate Purcell.
The study finds evidence that young people with solid educational and family backgrounds, with the contacts and confidence to seek out career opportunities, are highly likely to gain access to work in secure occupations with good conditions of employment and career development. By contrast, job-seekers without these advantages are increasingly found in low-skilled, low-paid jobs, very often on short-term contracts with no guaranteed hours and with few opportunities for progression.
This research was funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).
Nurturing the talent pipeline in Northern Ireland
The way in which teenagers think about their future in education and employment has a significant impact on what becomes of them as adults. Good-quality careers education and young people's exposure to the world of work can make a real difference to academic, social and economic outcomes, according to IER's Dr Deirdre Hughes OBE Principal Research Fellow and Chair of the Senior Advisory Group for Skills Northern Ireland. Deirdre is chairing a breakfast meeting with NI business and education leaders, including a keynote address by Peter Weir MLA, Minister of Education, Northern Ireland.
Organised by Prospects Events, sponsored by NIE Networks and supported by Ulster University, a brand new major Skills Northern Ireland event at the Titanic Exhibition Centre on 8 & November 2016 offers young people and parents the opportunity to meet employers, discover careers and learn more about Northern Irelands major skills shortages.