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Youth in the MENA Region

How to Bring Them In

image of Youth in the MENA Region

Young men and women in the MENA region are facing the highest youth unemployment levels in the world and express lower levels of trust in government than their parents. Since young people 15-29 years old exceed 30% of the working-age population in most MENA countries, governments urgently need to develop and implement strategies focused on fully engaging youth in the economy and society. This report is the first of its kind to apply a “youth lens” to public governance arrangements. It provides recommendations for adjusting legal frameworks, institutions and policies to give young people a greater voice in shaping better policy outcomes.

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Mainstreaming youth considerations in public governance

This chapter draws attention to the critical role public governance plays for setting the conditions for young men and women to raise their voice and engage in policy making. Noting that the considerations of young men and women in MENA are insufficiently reflected in public policies and strategies, and the delivery of public services, the chapter introduces pathways through which governments can work towards mainstreaming youth considerations. It argues that the integration of youth in public governance – the system of strategic processes and tools, as well as institutions, rules and interactions for effective policy making – is key to readjust them towards youth needs and increase the impact of youth programming. This concept is discussed with a view to the following fields: public sector integrity, public budgeting, public human resource management, regulatory policy, local governance and gender equality.

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