This partnership synthesis paper offers guiding principles for advancing just employment futures for Africa’s youth. In three years, the partners respectively conducted 8 research projects, commissioned and published 12 evidence synthesis papers and organised numerous knowledge dissemination events. All of these knowledge products are now collected in this partnership synthesis paper. The paper calibrates cutting-edge evidence from across Africa, centring knowledge produced from INCLUDE’s, ILO’s and IDRC’s collaborative research project, and draws out best practice for a more just, sustainable and inclusive approach to decent jobs for young people.
Over the next decade in Africa, there will be nearly three times as many young workers as there will be decent jobs. A key barrier to solving the employment challenge is a lack of research to guide policies. To overcome this barrier, INCLUDE Knowledge Platform, the International Development Research Centre, and the International Labour Organisation – under the guidance of the Global Initiative on Decent Jobs for Youth – joined forces in a collaborative research partnership built on a vision of a world where youth have greater access to decent jobs.
Policy, programming, regulation and research must focus on creating sustainable livelihoods for young people. We must build a supportive scaffold for young people to navigate complex and shifting employment trajectories, taking into account the blurred lines between the formal and informal sector.