UN World Youth Report


How does globalization have positive and/or negative effects on your – and your friends’ – efforts to secure a job?

Globalization describes the processes by which economies, societies and cultures have become integrated through communication, transportation and technology. The participants on the e-discussion platform focused on the movement of young people across borders and increased access to new resources – including communication technology.

On the upside…

Mobility and removing barriers:Globalization processes have opened up opportunities for young people looking for jobs. For Karolina, 27, from Sweden (studying in South Africa), globalization – through the removal of economic barriers and the opening up of borders – has enabled her to move (unforced) from her country of origin to other countries (such as the United Kingdom and Norway) in search of work. Regional agreements which govern travel and conditions of employment have created opportunities at both the national and international levels.

The same sentiments on the benefits of mobility from globalization are echoed by Ayshah, 26, from Kenya, who observes that the advent of globalization has spurred intra- and inter-country movement (which is not forced). She is originally from a central region of Kenya, but due to a lack of opportunities there, she has now settled in another Kenyan coastal region which generates wealth from foreign tourists, and where it was easier for her to secure employment.

In Jordan, Enass, 25, tells us that globalization has resulted in new information technology (IT) and software companies being set up. “Many international companies are investing in and opening new companies in this country – they look to outsource here because we have qualified people in this industry with lower labour costs than in Europe.” Furthermore, there has been a transfer of technology from one country to another, which can lead to innovative job creation.

Eva, 21, from Spain (who works for a hotel chain) told us that: “the ability to speak a diversity of languages can be both an opportunity and a challenge (as a result of globalization) for young people.”

On the down side…

Muhamad, 20, from Indonesia perceives globalization as having the potential to increase competition for already scarce jobs. He argues that globalization means that young people, who in most cases have little or no work experience, are made to compete for jobs with people with vast work experience. In this regard, it is the youth “who suffer in the end” as a result of globalization (particularly if they are exploited due to inexperience).

In addition, Big, 24, from Zimbabwe believes that globalization is benefiting developed economies. He views this in light of “brain drain,” whereby improved transport and communication networks between countries have made it easier for developed economies to attract professionals from developing economies, thereby “leaving behind people who do not have the necessary innovative and entrepreneurial skills” to take developing countries forward.

According to Jack, globalization has contributed to unemployment because of what he referred to as “labour fragmentations.” In other words, globalization brings about the interconnectedness of economies, which has contributed to the current global economic crisis. Even the current crisis in the euro zone affects most other countries. In a sense, “globalization spreads instability.”

Final insights…

Joseph from Latvia told us:

“The situation in Latvia is not good. We still have the third highest unemployment rate among [European Union] EU members. While Leo from Spain shared his opinion about emigration as the only solution, about 15 per cent of Latvian citizens have moved to another country, like Germany, Scandinavian countries, Ireland and the [United Kingdom] UK… I love my country, but I'm concerned about staying here… As a result of this huge emigration wave from Latvia, those who are left here in the near future will have to pay huge taxes to support the social insurance system, and that will cause another problem – a shadow economy.”


Read 202390 times Last modified on Monday, 06 February 2012 09:55
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The UN Focal Point on Youth aims to build awareness of the global situation of young people, as well as promote their rights and aspirations, working toward greater participation of young people in decision-making as a means for achieving peace and development.

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