Snapshot of young people who neither work nor study

A new report on young people in need of education and labour insertion offers a demographic analysis identifying those in the city who are neither enrolled on educational courses nor employed. According to the study, some 13.2% of young people in Barcelona aged between 16 and 24 neither study nor work. The conclusions should serve as a starting point for generating new insertion tools.

The most common profile for those in this situation corresponds to young men, with Spanish nationalities, single, who have finished secondary school and whose parents got as far as vocational training. “We’re talking about over 17,000 people in this situation”, noted the Commissioner for Education, Miquel Àngel Essomba, “That means that out of a class of thirty students, four will end up neither studying nor working”, he calculated.

Essomba also summed up the figures from the study: “They’re not positive at all, as they point to an early onset of unemployment which can lead to social exclusion among many young people”. The percentage of young people in Barcelona who neither study nor work is lower than the averages for Catalonia and Spain (15%), but higher than the average for the EU (12%).

According to the report, compiled by the vocational training observatory run by the Fundació BCN, the lower the level of qualifications gained, the greater the number of people neither working nor studying. The Deputy Mayor for Social Rights, Laia Ortiz, explained that the figures show a lack of support on the part of institutions and the public administration in the transition from obligatory education to the world of work.

“We shouldn’t be asking what young people should be doing differently, but what we should be doing differently”, stated Ortiz. “Professional training programmes are clearly not appealing to young people, and that means additional tools need to be designed”, she reflected. The study also shows that in order for institutional support to be effective a single shared database is needed between educational and labour authorities and social services.