- Coupled with a continual increase in voluntary unemployment, the International Labour Organisation expects unemployment in India to be higher in 2018.
- In India, 65% of the population is below 35 years and unemployment, especially among youth, can limit the nation’s ability to reap the much-hyped demographic dividend
Enhance youth employability
- Recognizing this challenge, a wide range of stakeholders, including the government, companies, civil society organizations, and for-profit enterprises are working either independently or in cohesion to enhance youth employability.
Models for youth employability in the country
- The first model, or the self-employment model, work on the rationale that if youth are trained in a particular skill, they will have the capacity to become micro-entrepreneurs.
- The second model, or the employer-led model, trains youth in specific skills relevant to an enterprise and then absorbs the youth into their own value chain.
- The third, the placement-led model, provides training to youth and also established linkages with potential employers
- Fourth, the market linkage model provides end-to-end support to self-employed youth, assisting them in earning better incomes
Causes of increasing unemployment
- Unemployment is higher among the formally educated in comparison to the illiterate
- There is higher youth unemployment in rural areas, while most interventions focus on urban areas
- There is a mismatch between the skill sets that industries require and the skill sets that youth are equipped with
- These structural challenges result in a demand-supply mismatch which can be summarized as-a mismatch between youth aspirations and the skills training being provided,mismatch in skills training and industry needs,poor industry buy-in for vocational training courses because of lack of standardization and universally accepted certification
Solutions for this problem
- The focus should be put on understanding aspirations, industry requirements and standardization across the skill-development value chain
- Well-designed interventions will be effective only if the candidates are willing, receptive and capable of absorbing the knowledge or skill being imparted by the intervention
- Counseling in skilling programmes is essential to align the aspirations of programme beneficiaries with the expected outcomes of training
- While designing programmes, it is critical to map skills being imparted to the specific needs of potential employers so that the skilling-to-employment loop is closed seamlessly
- When it comes to designing programmes that focus on self-employment or entrepreneurship, it is important to assess demand for the product or service and study policies or schemes that can be leveraged to enhance sales
- There is also scope for increased public-private partnerships
- Public-private partnerships (PPPs) can use existing under-utilized infrastructure available with educational institutions to facilitate vocational training and skill development
The Way forward
- India’s demography provides a great opportunity for the country with regard to economic growth and development milestones
- Concentrated and evidence-backed efforts which can cohesively develop and strengthen youth aspirations, the skill development ecosystem and markets where youth can be employed are necessary for India to realize that opportunity