Youth unemployment and inactivity

A comparison of school-to-work transitions and labour market outcomes in four Nordic countries

image of Youth unemployment and inactivity

Young people follow highly different trajectories from age 16 up to age 20, a time period which is often argued to be the most critical in terms of their future labour market outcomes. The focus of this report is on investigating the look of these early pathways, as well as on exploring their link to labour market outcomes in adulthood. Results are reported and compared for four Nordic countries: Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden.



Non-completers' school-to-work trajectories: stylized cluster results

In the previous chapter, country-specific information on individual school-to-work trajectories was pooled into one big data. Based on all this information for the four Nordic countries under study, ten common Nordic clusters were formed for all young people and separately for the non-completers. The results obtained for the common Nordic clusters presented in Chapter 4 provided further support for the broad picture painted already by the country-specific cluster results reported in Chapter 3. Basically two distinct features emerged. First, large shares of young people in the Nordic countries follow study tracks straight after completing compulsory school, occasionally only after a break year before entering post-compulsory education. The rest of the identified clusters of typical school-to-work trajectories play a more marginal role as alternatives to standard study tracks in the sense that they cover much smaller, but by no means negligible, shares of young people. Second, while standard study tracks are often followed also by non-completers, these alternative types of tracks play a much more important role among young people facing problems in completing an upper secondary degree, let alone starting an upper secondary education.


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