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ILO partners Mastercard to create new, improved youth labour database

Ukpono Ukpong, Abuja

In a bid to create an inclusive set of indicators on the labour market situation for people in the 15-29 age group, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) in partnership with Mastercard Foundation have unveiled a project that will provide a comprehensive national-level data on youth in the sector, including indicators on the transition from school to work.

In a statement made available to The Daily Times, the project which is to last for a one-year period, will serve as a central repository of international youth labour statistics.

According to the statement, during the one-year project, Mastercard Foundation will support the ILO in creating a new, regularly updated database, called YouthSTATS.

The database was first produced by the ILO as part of its partnership with the Mastercard Foundation ‘Work4Youth‘ Project that concluded in 2014.

The ILO houses the world’s largest stock of labour force survey microdatasets, which include individual and household level information that is used to produce official national statistics.

The statement noted that in recent years, the ILO’s Department of Statistics has invested considerable resources to collect more than 9,000 national labour force survey microdatasets from more than 140 countries worldwide.

It also disclosed that ILO experts systematically process these national microdatasets to obtain new, harmonized datasets that are then added to the ILO’s Harmonized Microdata collection.

The ILO’s Data Production and Analysis Unit, Steven Kapsos, in his opinion said the process will ensure that consistent definitions and international statistical standards are applied throughout the collection, thereby enhancing international comparability and facilitating cross-country analysis.

“A key advantage of basing YouthSTATS indicators on the ILO’s microdata collection is that this will facilitate the sustainable production of disaggregated data – by age, sex, economic industry, formal and informal sectors, occupation, level of educational attainment, and other pertinent variables.

The disaggregated data, in turn, will provide insights on challenges faced by specific population groups” said Steven Kapsos.

Similarly, the Director of Strategy and Learning at the Mastercard Foundation, Lindsay Wallace, said “The pioneering School-to-Work Transition surveys showed the importance of understanding, in detail, what this pivotal period looks like for young people around the world.

“We are pleased that the ILO will be able to make this information available on an ongoing basis for global, regional, and national decision-makers.”