Education and the labour market

South Africa is renowned for its stark and persistent unemployment levels, especially among the youth. With over 39% of young South Africans unemployed by the strict definition, the country has one of the highest youth unemployment rates in the world.

Many young people enter the labour force with minimal skills due to low levels of school completion, limited access to post school education and training and even lower qualification completion rates. This reality stands in strong contrast to the demand for high skilled employees, resulting in skills mismatch and exclusion from the labour market.

Previous studies have shown that post school education has the potential to enable the youth to find jobs and earn higher wages, alleviating poverty and joblessness.   Less is known about what responsibilities completing a post school qualification might bring or the long run outcomes of not completing school or remaining out of employment education or training (NEET) for a long period of time. This project area focuses on expanding the base of empirical research in this area using the National Income Dynamics Study.

This project has received funding from the Kresge Foundation, DST‐ NRF Centre of Excellence in Human Development and the National Income Dynamics Study.