30 Jul 2013
A new global study finds that 75 million youth worldwide are unemployed, which is a huge number, but James Heintz, associate director at American research organisation, Political Economy Research Institute (PERI), argues that the bigger problem is the fact that 500 million (half a billion) youth are employed in what’s known as the informal economy where they are engaged in very low-quality jobs.
Often youth are employed in those jobs even though they have much higher qualifications than the jobs actually demand. A lot of this is taking place in developing countries. These tensions of being excluded for a long time from productive employment or realizing your own potential can have dramatic consequences, he contends -- such as when Mohamed Bouazizi, the Tunisian fruit seller self immolated himself, setting off the Arab Spring.
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