Economically Vulnerable Youth in OECD and Russia

Publication type Article
Status Published
Affiliation: National Research University Higher School of Economics
Address: Moscow, Russian Federation
Affiliation: National Research University Higher School of Economics
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow, Russian Federation
Journal nameMirovaia ekonomika i mezhdunarodnye otnosheniia
EditionVolume 62 Issue 11

The article is dedicated to the analysis of economically vulnerable categories of youth in OECD and Russia with particular focus on the comparative analysis of various characteristics of NEETs. Labour force participation of young people in the developed countries decreased during 2000–2015 which was associated not only with the cyclical crisis, but also with an increase in the proportion of young people who continue their education. The new statistical indicator – NEET-reflects the ratio of those young people who are not in employment, education or training. Thus, it should identify economically vulnerable groups of young people who experience difficulties with the transition from school to work. The article states that NEET should not be regarded as the only indicator of economic deprivation of young people. The reasons for the drop out from education and employment can be diverse. The category of NEET unites young people with different experience in employment, personal characteristics and life goals. For some of them economic inactivity is a voluntary choice. That is why one should always consider differences in NEET types. However, the majority of NEET group consists of economically vulnerable young people who definitely need support from the state. In OECD countries about 60% of all NEETs got in this state due to some disfunction of the labor market, and the remaining 40%  – due to some social or medical reasons. Countries of Southern Europe are characterized by the highest proportion of long-term unemployed and desperate NEETs, reflecting the tough character of youth labor market adjustment to the crisis. The risk of falling into the NEET group as a whole is higher among young women and those who have low levels of education. Effective youth policy is impossible without the consideration of all aspects of youth labor market. This is relevant both to developed and transition economies, including Russia. In Russia the share of NEET youth has been declining over the past twenty years and now is at the level of European mean values. At the same time the structure of NEET youth in Russia is dominated not by the unemployed, i.e. those actively seeking work, but by economically inactive young people who are outside the labor market. One of the most disturbing features of the structure of Russian NEET youth is an increase in the proportion of young graduates with higher education. It points to the difficulties of matching between education and labor market which can come as a result of so-called massovization of higher education.

Keywordsyouth, economic activity, unemployment, NEET, labor force, Russia, OECD
Publication date14.12.2018
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