project . 2019 - 2022 . Closed


UK Research and Innovation
Funder: UK Research and InnovationProject code: ES/T003790/1
Funded under: ESRC Funder Contribution: 614,503 GBP
Status: Closed
31 Aug 2019 (Started) 31 Dec 2022 (Ended)

The policies, strategies and programs introduced to address youth unemployment in Africa (e.g., entrepreneurial skills development, funding young farmers, counseling, investing in accelerators and incubators to support the launch of new businesses) are not working. In sub-Saharan Africa, 64.4 million youth lived in extreme or moderate poverty (less than $3.10 per day) in 2016. Nigeria's youth unemployment rate grew from 11.7% in 2014 to 36.5% in 2018 and youth unemployment rates in Egypt, Kenya and South Africa reached all-time highs in 2017. To design and implement programs that can effectively reduce youth unemployment in Africa, we need to increase the multi-disciplinary research capacity of African university professors, learn from countries that have successfully reduced youth unemployment, engage African youth in the process of identifying the core of the unemployment problem and approaches to solve it, and maintain databases that store and manage large amounts of digital information that is accurate and reliable. The goal of this project is to build significant research capacity across African universities to help reduce youth unemployment in African countries, starting with: Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Egypt, Senegal and South Africa.The expected outcomes at the end of three years after project start are: i) One high-performing hub that has the capacity to raise external funds, form partnerships, explore entrepreneurial activities, attract excellent mentors worldwide, and anchor a research network across African universities; ii) 12 doctoral students and post-doctoral fellows and 13 faculty members distributed across African universities who can carry out research in how to reduce youth unemployment in Africa; and iii) Models, local best practices and reliable digital data that can be applied to reduce youth unemployment in Africa. To achieve its objectives, the project will carry out five major initiatives: i) Baseline assessment- establishes existing gaps that necessitate research investment; ii) Networking Events - hosts conferences, workshops and seminars; iii) international placement events to develop the capacity to reduce youth unemployed of all the individuals and organizations that are part of the hub-and-spokes network; iv) Research Labs - trains and mentors young academics from the six African countries to define problems, set objectives and priorities, conduct sound research, and identify solutions to high youth unemployment in Africa as well as work collaboratively; v) Infrastructure and Dissemination- documents and updates models, local best practices and digital databases that can be applied to design and implement policies, strategies and programs to reduce youth unemployment in Africa; and shares the reports produced and the digital data that is used and created by the project with all stakeholders. The project comprised of a team of experts drawn from universities in Five African countries (University of Lagos Nigeria, University of Ghana, University of Cape Town, South Africa, University of Nairobi Kenya, and The America University in Cairo, Egypt), three universities in the United Kingdom (Lancaster University, University of Strathclyde , Coventry University and University of Derby) and 2 in North America (Carleton University, Canada and University of Iowa, USA) The investment required is 600 thousand pounds. The funds will be invested in capacity building and networking (70%), scoping studies (20%) and administrative support (10%). This project responds to the urgent need for a multi-country strategic approach to address high youth unemployment rates in African countries. The project greatly benefits young career academics in different African countries because it provides a platform for them to build their research capacities in one or more of the nine focus areas of the ARUA, USD-CoE and the resources that can be leveraged to form partnerships and explore entrepreneurial opportunities

Data Management Plans