Youth not in Employment, Education or Training (NEET): Current Policies and Improvements in Türkiye

    Prof. Dr. Mahmut Özer & Dr. H. Eren Suna

    Human capital has become the most valuable resource for countries to increase their competitiveness on a global scale. The future of countries is closely related to the quality of the human resources they train and their ability to adapt to rapidly changing conditions. In this context, youth and young adults are seen as the future of societies, and their qualifications have a significant impact on the future of countries. The economic and social integration of this group is crucial for sustainable national development.

    The young population still represents a significant part of societies in the European Union (EU) and neighboring countries, including Türkiye. Türkiye has an abundant youth population opportunity, and its policies on youth employment and education will be very decisive in terms of national development. However, young people’s integration into the labor market has been a challenge, and traditional indicators such as “youth unemployment” and “labor force participation” are limited in representing the holistic integration of the group. Therefore, more inclusive indicators, such as the NEET indicator, are needed to assess the integration of this group.

    The NEET indicator refers to young people who are not in education, employment, or training. The increase in NEET rates is influenced by changes in the labor market, and the COVID-19 pandemic has further exacerbated this issue. The sustained implementation of global policies is needed to alleviate NEET rates. In Türkiye, the Ministry of National Education has taken steps to alleviate NEET rates by implementing vocational education and training programs and providing opportunities for work experience.

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