New Report: What Drives Youth Unemployment in SA?

SALDRU’s Ariane de Lannoy and Murray Leibbrandt have collaborated with the University of Johannesburg’s Lauren Graham and Leila Patel to produce a new report on youth unemployment in South Africa. The work was supported by the Government Technical Advisory Committee, the National Treasury Jobs Fund, and the REDI 3X3 programme.

The report titled, “What Drives Youth Unemployment and What Interventions Help? A Systematic Overview of The Evidence and a Theory of Change”, assessed existing national evidence about the drivers of youth unemployment as well as the policies and interventions that have sought to address the crisis.

The study, which examines both micro and macro level drivers as well as policy and programmatic interventions, finds that economic growth on its own is insufficient to address the youth unemployment problem. It identified critical barriers to youth labour market participation, including the fact that there are insufficient mechanisms to efficiently ‘match’ young work seekers and employers, as well as a continued lack of understanding of employers’ hiring behaviour and preferences on the part of youth.

The report proposes four theories of change, each focussing on one aspect of the youth unemployment challenge (the supply side; the demand side; the intermediary; and the policy context).

To read the executive summary of the report, click here.

To read the complete youth unemployment report, click here.