Underemployment and a lack of employment opportunities are two of the most challenging economic and social problems policymakers in developing countries face. Active labor market and youth employment programs use training, public works and job search assistance to help give people the skills to find jobs and to increase employment opportunities. Nonetheless, best practices have yet to be defined and few of these programs in developing countries have been evaluated.
Questions we hope the evaluations will help answer include:
- Are active labor market programs, including those for youth, effective for improving the employability and productivity of the targeted groups in the population?
- Which interventions are the most cost effective and for whom?
- How can these programs be better designed, or implemented, to effectively reach those who need them the most?
India: The evaluation of India’s National Rural Employment Guarantee (NREG) program sought to measure the effectiveness of a program that guaranteed 100 days employment for more than 72 million people.
Dominican Republic: The evaluation of the Dominican Republic’s Youth Development Program sought to assess the effectiveness of classroom training to improve work skills on employment rates and wages in vulnerable groups with limited work experience. Evaluation report pending.
Uganda: The evaluation of Uganda’s Youth Opportunities Program sought to gauge the effectiveness of providing grants to students to pay for vocational training fees and small business start-up costs on employment and improved social relations and stability.
Malawi: The evaluation of Malawi’s Apprenticeship Training Program and Entrepreneurial Support for Vulnerable Youth sought to measure the rates of HIV infection on vulnerable youth, including orphans and out-of-school females, who were given an opportunity to enhance their employability and earning potential. Evaluation report pending.
Tunisia: The evaluation of Tunisia’s Turning Theses into Enterprises program sought to measure the effectiveness of helping college graduates develop business plans during the final stages of their undergraduate study on unemployment rates among youth. Evaluation report pending.
Turkey: The evaluation of Turkey’s Vocational Training Programs sought to assess the effectiveness of improving vocational training programs in the context of the rapid expansion of these programs in Turkey.
South Africa: The evaluation of South Africa’s Youth Wage Subsidy Experiment sought to measure the effectiveness of providing subsidies to young people to offset training costs of first-time workers and thereby decrease the unemployment rate. Evaluation report pending.
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