Just before noon yesterday, a young African woman asked panelists about what can be done to ensure students in Africa have more access to electricity so they can work on their homework at night.
She was one of the many young adults who were in Washington, D.C. for the World Bank Group Youth Summit, an event championed by the Junior Professional Associates program in collaboration with other parts of the World Bank Group. The theme of the summit was “Youth Entrepreneurship: Cultivating an Innovative Spirit to Alleviate Global Youth Unemployment.”
The daylong summit addressed three areas: youth employment, education, and millennial communications — the use of social media and technology for development. The World Bank auditorium where the event was held was packed with youth exchanging ideas.
Out of 1.2 billion young people between the ages of 15 and 24 in the world, 75 million are unemployed. Unemployment is one of biggest challenges facing young people. Throughout the day, many speakers and panelists shared their views on how to create jobs and build an environment where entrepreneurs can prosper.
Sri Mulyani Indrawati, managing director and chief operating officer of the World Bank, said youth are both the stakeholders and drivers of solving the challenge of youth employment. Ahmad Alhendawi, the secretary-general’s envoy on youth at the United Nations, echoed her voice by saying that youth should not just seek jobs but also invent them.
You can view the archive of the live blog from the Summit or check out Tweets by using #wbgyouthsummit
Of course, a daylong conversation is not enough to find solutions to complex challenges. In the comments, tell us what can be done to create jobs and opportunities for young people.