While economic progress is being experienced by some, youth are not getting their fair share. Youth are more vulnerable to global challenges including the consequences of climate change, raising inequality and high public debt.
Today’s political leadership tends to be dominated by older citizens which can lead to government being less sensitive to the needs of youth – possibly leading to decreased trust in government and public institutions.
The OECD Youth Stocktaking Report is the first of its kind to take stock of existing public governance arrangements for effective and inclusive youth engagement and empowerment. It draws on OECD evidence on open government, gender equality, public sector innovation, public budgeting, regulatory policy, and other areas.
- Youth policy: Less than half of all OECD countries have an operational national youth strategy in place. Some do not seem to deliver on international standards.
- Institutions and co-ordination: A variety of practices exists to steer and co-ordinate youth affairs across ministries and levels of government. There are gaps in the available evidence on the workforce and budgets allocated for delivering youth policy and services.
- Mainstreaming tools: Only a small number of countries apply tools to mainstream youth concerns in policy making and service delivery, and sound evidence on their impact is missing.
- Youth engagement and representation: Young people are underrepresented in state institutions and participation in public and political life through formal channels appears to be on the decline. Governments and youth have yet to fully harness the potential of alternative avenues for youth to shape policy outcomes.
- Legal frameworks and minimum ages: While a legally binding international framework focused on “youth” does not exist, youth laws/acts have emerged in some countries. However, in some cases, contested minimum ages continue to undermine young persons’ access to public services and autonomy.
How does a “youth-friendly” government and public administration operate? This public consultation process provides a space for young people and youth policy practitioners to answer this question and enrich the report with practical examples. This Public Consultation is open to everyone – from interested citizens to youth workers and activists, governments, representatives of international organisations, NGOs and academics. Based on the feedback received, the OECD Secretariat will prepare a revised version of the report which will be presented to PGC delegates from the OECD’s 35 member countries on 12-14 November 2018 in Paris.
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