FULL LIST OF WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

Workforce development initiatives build the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that youth need to obtain and participate in productive work. Activities in this area strive to bring the private and public sector together to ensure that education improves both the workforce readiness and technical skills necessary for youth to participate in the world of work effectively.

Where are we now?

Workforce development as a field is hard to generalize due to its many different providers, approaches, and target populations, which range from universities educating highly-skilled medical personnel to community organizations providing basic literacy skills to out-of-school youth.  However, increasing global unemployment and events, such as the Arab Spring, have highlighted a common problem of these providers - their services have not kept pace with changes in the private sector, leading to widespread mismatches between skills available and those demanded. Practitioners are responding through a renewed emphasis on collaboration with the private sector to ensure that educational institutions and community organizations are providing demand-driven skills to students, while employers invest in improved on-the-job training to build the skills of new employees quickly and cost-effectively.

Trends and Best Practices

  • Private sector buy-in is critical in developing the programs that link young people to formal employment opportunities. When the private sector is an invested party with donors and social organizations, there is greater possibility for young people to access employment opportunities as they continuously develop their skills and knowledge.
  • Young people and their families are looking for programs that offer practical and hands on opportunities, such as apprenticeships with trade based companies or internships with companies or NGO's. Some programs offer voucher systems that cover the cost of the internships, which have been particularly successful for young women seeking employment in more conservative countries. Participation in workforce development programs often increases when these practical opportunities for relevant skills application are included.
  • Many vocational institutions are not best placed to develop the technical skills of young people given the high rate of change in technology and the challenges for these institutions to keep pace. The private sector, on the other hand, has to keep pace with the market to remain competitive and therefore offers an alternative housing of skills development offerings.
  • Historically, workforce development focused primarily on building technical skills required for a given trade. However, most programs now recognize the importance of incorporating work-readiness skills, including basic literacy, numeracy, and job conduct. If these skills are lacking, it will make their ability to function in the workplace and learn more specialized vocational skills very weak.
  • Creating employment opportunities is just as important as skills building and should encompass all types of employment – formal, informal, and self-employment. The latter two are particularly important for vulnerable populations, such as women and youth, who may be excluded from formal employment.

BLOG: Cities as Drivers of Economic Opportunity for Youth

Making Cents International

According to the recently released United Nations report (“World Urbanization Prospects”), more than half of humanity now lives in cities. Today, 54% of the world’s population, 3.9 billion people, resides in urban areas, compared to only 30% back in 1950. The report predicts that cities will add an additional 2.5 billion people by 2050, with nearly 90% of this increase happening in Asia and Africa.

BLOG: Workforce Development: A shift into high gear

RTI

This year’s Workforce Development Track of the Making Cents conference saw more than a tenfold increase in proposal submissions and will feature a record number of panelists across nine distinct workforce themed panels. The lineup of proposals and participants provides terrific insight into the range and diversity of workforce issues that the development community and countries at large are grappling with, including public private partnerships, work-based learning interventions, soft-skills measurement, technology applications, career development practices and mentorship programs.     

Youth Engagement Community of Practice Meeting

ORGANIZER: 
YouthPower Learning
DATE: 
Jan 25, 2017 (09:30am to 11:00am)
Please join YouthPower Learning's Youth Engagement Community of Practice in person at the National Democratic Institute (NDI) for the first meeting of the new year.
 
Date:
January 25, 2017, 9:30 - 11:00 am EST
 
Location:
National Democratic Institute (NDI)
455 Massachusetts Avenue NW, 8th Floor, 
Washington, D.C., 20001
 

CURRICULUM: Introducing LinkedIn to Workforce Training Participants: A Curriculum

Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator and RTI International

This curriculum presents an approach for introducing young people to LinkedIn and other digital professional networks, to help them understand the multiple functions of the sites (signaling, networking, labor market information) and develop the habit of using such tools throughout their careers. This curriculum was developed by RTI International and Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator in South Africa and is calibrated for a short training course, such as Harambee’s 8-week training programs, though it could be easily adapted for short or longer training experiences.

Resource Type: 
Toolkit

BLOG: New Qualifications Help Young Ghanaians Access Jobs in Construction

The MasterCard Foundation

Twenty-seven percent* of out-of-school youth in Ghana are unemployed. Yet the World Bank estimates that Ghana’s construction sector needs 60,000 more artisans and tradespeople – and that’s set to rise to 250,000 by 2020. So what’s stopping young people from making the most of job opportunities in construction?

BLOG: Four Work Experience Programs That Lead To Paying Jobs

Forbes

Young people today face an excruciating paradox when entering the workforce. After spending years obtaining the necessary training and accreditation for potential careers, they’re shut out from entry-level jobs because they lack “work experience”. It’s a ridiculous blocker because what person really has any relevant “work experience” straight out of school? I’ve seen the frustration in many young people who have worked hard to achieve good grades and have racked up countless hours volunteering, interning, or donating their skills to hopefully one day bridge their efforts toward paid work. Time and time again those young workers are told that the experience accrued is still not enough.

REPORT: Exploring the Linkages Between Youth Financial Inclusion and Job Creation, Dec 2016

The MasterCard Foundation & International Labor Organization

With youth demographic bulges, existing high levels of youth underutilization and limited job creation occurring in many developing countries, governments and development actors are actively exploring new approaches to enabling youth to obtain sustainable livelihoods. There is a growing consensus that increasing the ability of youth to access financial services and strengthening their ability to use these services for their future life needs can play a direct role in supporting the transition to employment and better livelihoods. This report seeks to determine the extent to which this consensus is borne out in practice.

Resource Type: 
Report

FORUM: Turkey Europe Future Forum 2017 in Turkey, July 2017

Marketing & Promotions Concept International (MPC)

Applications are open for Turkey Europe Future Forum 2017, organized by Mercator Program Center for International Affairs (MPC) in cooperation with TÜSİAD and funded by Stiftung Mercator. The objective of the eight-day Forum is to strengthen the ties between young leaders from Turkey and Europe with a view to leveraging European discourse and creating a network based on mutual trust. The 3rd Turkey Europe Future Forum will take place from July 2nd to 9th, 2017 in Izmir and Istanbul.

FELLOWSHIP: Yale Fox International Fellowship, Dec 2016

Yale Fox International

The goal of the Fox International Fellowship is to enhance mutual understanding between the peoples of the United States and other countries by promoting international scholarly exchanges and collaborations among the next generation of leaders. To accomplish this goal, the program seeks to identify and nurture those students who are interested in harnessing scholarly knowledge to respond to the world’s most pressing challenges. For these reasons, we especially welcome students enrolled in the social sciences and kindred disciplines in the professional schools. 

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