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International Conference on Putting Youth to Work in Sub-Saharan Africa (YESSA), from January 28 to 30, 2014

DAKAR, Senegal, January 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

What strategies can we adopt to put youth to work?

Answers from researchers, experts and decision-makers

An international conference on Putting youth to work in sub-Saharan Africa will be held from January 28 to 30, 2014, at the Pullman Hotel in Dakar, Senegal. This event, designed as a forum for reflection, exchange, and experience-sharing, is being organized by Canada's International Development Research Centre (IDRC), in collaboration with the Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP).

The conference organizers consider youth unemployment as one of the major issues faced by African countries. A unique opportunity presented itself in Senegal in 2013 following the government decision to recruit 5,000 new civil servants after the 2012 presidential election. The vast number of applications received - 150,000 - attests to the country's shortage of jobs for this age group. In fact, youth aged 15 to 35 comprise approximately 37% of the workforce in Africa. Existing statistics show that youth are three times more likely to be unemployed than adults. Youth comprise 83% of the unemployed in Uganda, 68% in Zimbabwe and 56% in Burkina Faso and Senegal.

This is clearly an opportune time to assess the gaps in knowledge of Africa's labour market dynamics, and to conduct a critical study of current practices and strategies for youth employment.

The conference will bring together national and regional public policy actors, multilateral partners, researchers and other African think tank and research centre experts. The event will give speakers the opportunity to compare the scientific research results with programs and initiatives for youth employment in order to define the possibilities and challenges and identify the best potential policy options and strategies and their perspectives. This meeting will also inform the development of a relevant policy-oriented research agenda that takes into account local realities.

Prelude to the special session of the African Union's Conference of Labour Ministers

The discussions at this conference will feed into the debate that will take place during the special session of the African Union's Conference of Labour Ministers to be held in Windhoek in April 2014. During this meeting, a new declaration and action plan for promoting jobs for youth in Africa will be adopted. In turn, the Ministers' meeting will feed into a special summit of the AU Heads of State to mark the 10th anniversary of the Ouagadougou Declaration in September 2014.

Journalists and the public can also join in the conversation through Twitter (#YESSA2014).

For more information 

About Canada's IDRC

A key part of Canada's aid program, IDRC supports research in developing countries to promote growth and development. The result is innovative, lasting local solutions that aim to bring change to those who need it most. http://www.idrc.ca

About PEP

The Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP) is an international network of researchers and development economics experts (currently comprising over 8,000 members) with the main objective of promoting the local capacity for economic policy research and analysis in developing countries.



Gloria Lihemo

Communications and Public Relations Officer | IDRC's Regional Office for Sub-Saharan Africa

Tel: +254-271-3160/1 | Mobile: +254-727-903-983 | [email protected]


Awa Diop

Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP) | PEP African Office | Consortium pour la recherche économique et sociale
Tel: +221-33-864-7398 | Mobile: +221-77-375-3656 | [email protected]

@PEPNetwork (#YESSA2014)

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