The Impact of the Economic Crisis on Youth Labour Markets in Europe
Looking at age-specific unemployment rates reveals that the recent economic crisis has particularly hit young people. Therefore, concerns of creating a “lost generation” have been raised as the exclusion from the labour market can have far-reaching negative consequences for young people. Against this background this research project will investigate if the economic crisis has deteriorated the already disadvantaged position of young people in the labour market. Based on European comparative micro data the labour market positions of young people will be investigated in a multidimensional perspective by analyzing both risks of labour market exclusion in terms of various types of non-employment and risks of different types of precarious employment. In order to assess both the permanence as well as direct consequences of the aforementioned precarious labour market positions we adopt a longitudinal perspective on the individual labour market careers. In doing so we aim at testing if young people are permanently disadvantaged or if – even in times of an economic crisis – these positions can be used as stepping stones to standard employment. One central objective of this project constitutes the explanation of the variation in incidence and dynamics of labour market exclusion and precarious labour market positions by comparing all Western and Eastern European countries. To this end we focus on the interaction of economic shocks, institutional contexts and policy measures. Taking a country-comparative perspective we want to obtain new insights about which institutional arrangements and policy measures can protect youth from the impact of an economic crisis.
This research project just started in September 2013. In the first stage of the project European comparative micro-data from the European Labour Force Survey (EULFS) have been prepared to conduct analyses of the labour market positions of young people during the economic crisis in a multidimensional perspective. Specifically, we have analysed both risks of labour market exclusion in terms of various types of non-employment and risks of different types of precarious employment. First results were presented at international conferences. A first publication is currently in preparation.