Population and Development Report, Issue No. 5

Youth Exclusion in the ESCWA Region - Demographic, Economic, Educational and Cultural Factors

image of Population and Development Report, Issue No. 5
This publication is one of a series of analytical Reports issued by the Population and Social Development Section of the Social Development Division at the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA). It aims to deepen knowledge of the interrelation between population and development issues. The fifth edition of this Report focuses on the millions of young people in the ESCWA member countries suffering multifaceted exclusion, which impede life progress of young people and reduce their integration in society. Expeditious short and medium term interventions within declared powerful youth policies guided by the World Program of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond and best international practices are needed for national and regional development.



Demographics and youth exclusion

Demography has a multidimensional impact on various aspects of the lives of individuals and groups; the most important is the economic and social impact, especially in relation to growth rate of the segment of population of working, education, training, and marriage age. Demographic shifts have a direct impact on the life cycles of the most susceptible groups, such as youth. Therefore demographic shifts, particularly those related to the youth bulge, pose a number of societal and institutional challenges that require large and successive investments to ensure an optimal use of human capacities. Such challenges entail associating the situation of youth in countries experiencing a youth bulge, such as the Arab and ESCWA member countries, with the various aspects of social and economic exclusion to which the youth are subjected, which in turn, raises the issue of the impact of structural demographic factors related to population composition on the population in general and youth in particular. Without underestimating the importance of the impact of the demographic structure on youth and on life cycles, youth demography provides numerous opportunities that generate various social and economic benefits, as has been shown in many Asian and European countries. This denotes that youth can be a force for development if appropriate institutional conditions are established, rather than an impediment to social and economic integration.


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