Factors associated with youth unemployment in Uganda
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The broader objective of this study was to examine the different factors associated with youth unemployment in Uganda. Youth unemployment is one of the major challenges that Uganda as a country faces given that the youths make up the majority of the population and they’re the tomorrow of the nation. Therefore, ignoring them is putting the nation at risk. Several factors are linked and connected to youth unemployment both directly and indirectly and influencing it. However, this research specifically focused on three major factors namely; age, highest level of education and type of place of residence. The study concentrated on the youth aged 18-30 as per definition of who a youth is in Uganda, whereby using the 2016 UDHS dataset, a sample of 7568 youths was analysed. It was found out that the mean age was 23.61 and 74.76% of the youths respondents were currently employed and only 25.24% were unemployed. Findings also showed that majority of those employed were in rural areas as well as majority of those unemployed were also in rural areas compared to their peers in urban areas. This is linked to the fact that 73.03% of the youths respondents were living in rural areas and only 26.97% were in urban areas. This explains why unemployment was prevalent in rural areas. Combining these factors (age, level of education and type of place of residence) showed that they were altogether significantly influencing and predicting one’s likelihood of employment. Further, findings showed that those in rural areas were highly likely to get employed compared to their counterparts in urban areas. With level of education, majority of the respondents had only primary education followed by those with secondary education. Those with higher education followed by those with no education were relatively lower than the above two dominant groups. The researcher concluded by recommending that the government and its partners should invest heavily in the youth in general. First, this will reduce rural-urban migration with its associated risks like slums. Programs like Youth Livelihood Fund, Emyooga, Youth Livelihood Program, Operation Wealth Creation among others should be further strengthened and supported to serve their purpose. This coupled with an adjustment in the education system to fit today’s trend will help the youths become more of job creators than job seekers given that most of the youths released into the job market by tertiary institutions are mostly eyeing the formal jobs and preferably public service.