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Tonight, We Are Young…and Unemployed

Young people around the world will be feeling the effects of the euro crisis for years to come, warns a new report by the International Labour Organization (h/t BBC News):

As the euro area crisis continues in its second year, the impacts are spreading further, slowing down economies from East Asia to Latin America. Other regions such as Sub-Saharan Africa that had expected faster improvements in their youth labour markets will now take longer to revert to levels seen prior to the global financial crisis.

Interestingly, the report points out that the character of youth unemployment is different in developing and developed countries. In developed countries, young people can’t find jobs because they are facing changing economies where their skills do not match the market. Meanwhile, youth in developing countries are losing jobs due to a drop in European demand for their goods. With these trends combined, the ILO predicts that world youth unemployment may reach 12.9 percent in 2017.

Regardless of the cause, this is not a good sign. Youth unemployment has been shown to strongly correlate with political violence, as frustrated young people—especially men—turn their attention and overabundant energy to the source of their discontent. Unless the economy starts providing more jobs for young people, the political temperature in many countries will continue to rise.

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