The youth employment challenge is a stubborn reality in all regions and nearly every country. Over 35 per cent of the estimated 201 million unemployed people today are youth (between the ages of 15 and 24). Worldwide, the challenge is not only to create jobs but to ensure quality jobs for young people who are often underemployed, work in the informal economy, or engage in vulnerable employment. Today, two out of every five young people in the labor force are either working but poor or unemployed.
With high levels of self-employment in developing countries (see our recent blog “Self-Employment and Subsistence Entrepreneurs?”), policy makers are weighing various types of interventions to reduce poverty and improve productivity. The options for them fall into two key categories: (1) helping raise the returns for the self-employed in the activities and sectors where they are now; and (2) helping move them from self-employment into higher paying wage jobs. In this blog, we share the perspectives of three experts: David Margolis (Research Director, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, University of Paris), Tim Gindling, (Professor of Economics, University of Maryland), and Gary Fields (Professor of Economics, Cornell University).
More than half of all workers in the developing world are self-employed, mainly in agriculture. But unlike in the developed world, self-employment is typically because of constraints (like a lack of available wage jobs) – not by choice. In other words, it’s a question of survival. In this blog, we share the thoughts of three experts on the challenges these people face: Gary Fields (Professor of Economics, Cornell University), David Margolis (Research Director, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, University of Paris), and Tim Gindling, (Professor of Economics, University of Maryland).
In 2011, the Philippines launched the Specialista Technopreneurship Program to stimulate economic growth and help provide employment to graduates of Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET), especially in the rural areas. We learned more about the program works from Maria Susan Dela Rama, Executive Director for Planning of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA)—the government agency that regulates TVET.
As policy makers in developed and developing countries alike search for ways to boost productivity, create more and better jobs, increase wages, and lower poverty, they are increasingly focusing on stimulating innovation and entrepreneurship. How can this be done? We asked an expert on this topic – John Van Reenen, Director of the Centre for Economic Performance and Professor of Economics, London School of Economics. In Part II of this two-part series, he emphasizes the need for countries to not only find their comparative advantage but ensure that it is in an area where demand is likely to grow.
As policy makers in developed and developing countries alike search for ways to boost productivity, create more and better jobs, increase wages, and lower poverty, they are increasingly focusing on stimulating innovation and entrepreneurship. How can this be done? We asked an expert on this topic – John Van Reenen, Director of the Centre for Economic Performance and Professor of Economics, London School of Economics.
For the Middle East and North Africa, a major challenge is creating meaningful and plentiful job opportunities. How can this be done? We spoke with Neveen El Tahri, Chairwoman and Managing Director of Delta Shield for Investment, an organization she founded to mentor Egyptian entrepreneurs.
Dennis Szeszko's passion for exploration and discovery has yielded not only a venture-backed start-up company in Mexico but also new varieties of orchids for the international commercial flower market – ones that are hybridized to be grown without soil. The JKP spoke with him about he created his business, the skills that are useful for being an entrepreneur, and how policymakers can encourage new firms, especially in agriculture, as farmers try to switch over to higher-value crops.
Developing countries are often counseled to encourage entrepreneurship as a way to boost growth and create jobs. But the way to do that often isn't clear, given that these countries may not have much experience with role models, management expertise, and access to smart capital, to name just a few likely barriers. One innovative effort under way in this regard is Endeavor Global, a nonprofit that tries to help transform emerging countries by establishing High-Impact Entrepreneurship as the leading force for sustainable economic development. We spoke with its President, Fernando Fabre.
Sarathbabu Elumalai is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Food King, a food catering business in Chennai, India, with about 300 employees. He grew up in a slum but went on to get a masters degree from the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad and then started the company in 2006 with only $40 in capital. He was honored for his entrepreneurship and leadership skills at the World Bank’s 2012 Global Youth Conference in March. He spoke with us about the challenges of launching a company and the critical need for information and access to finance.