Funding call

This programme aims to examine the contributions of young people to the UN’s 2030 Agenda, bringing a youth lens to the global sustainable development challenges.

Funded by the UK’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (through the Global Challenges Research Fund).

Around half of all young people in the world are unemployed or underemployed, and this situation is likely to get worse. The World Bank estimates that 1 billion young people will enter the labour market in the next 10 years, with only 400 million of them likely to find jobs in the formal economy. The potential demographic dividend of boosted economic growth from the growing youth population remains high, yet the way to achieve it is unclear, because of contextual specificities, young people’s own desires and policy deficits. Nine tenths of today’s 1.8 billion young people live in developing countries, experiencing precarious forms of livelihood associated with low pay and few worker rights, especially among women and those with low educational attainment. This reality of getting by through various ways of working, involving self-initiative and paid work, requires better understanding in order to formulate policy directions beyond the traditional binaries of supply and demand, formal and informal, self-employment, employment and unemployment, and paid and unpaid work.

This programme aims to support research which demonstrates an interdisciplinary approach yielding new conceptual understanding, developing ground-breaking research and energising innovative collaborations in the humanities and social sciences.