Publication: Investing in Turkey's Next Generation : The School-to-Work Transition and Turkey's Development
This report assesses the prospects for Turkey's youth by examining the 'school-to-work transition'. Turkey needs to invest in its young people to capture the potentially substantial dividend of today's large youth cohort. Because of the sheer number of young people, Turkey's working-age population will expand by over 800,000 every year during the next decade. This so-called 'productive population' will continue to grow until around 2020 when the demographic window starts to close. By that time, Turkey will have the population profile of an aging society. East Asia's economic miracle of the 1970s and 1980s demonstrated that a large youth cohort can propel an economy to very high growth rates. However, the experience in other regions, such as Latin America, has shown that this outcome is by no means guaranteed. Investments made now in today's children and youth will be critical in determining the extent to which Turkey benefits from this 'demographic dividend' While the potential benefits are great, so are the risks if today's large youth cohort does not find its place in tomorrow's labor market and society. The potential downside of this demographic profile is also significant. If Turkey's young people are not well prepared for the world of work and if the labor market does not generate more and better jobs for them, then this large youth cohort will be the source of social and economic pressures and tensions. Indeed, managing the transition into adulthood will be a very important factor in determining how well Turkey achieves the goals of stability, equity, and competitiveness that are at the heart of the Ninth Development Plan. In many respects, Turkey has taken important steps to prepare for this future. Today's young people are more educated and healthier than previous ones, which is a strong base to build on. Educational achievements have been notable, especially in basic education. Enrollments are up at all levels. Some important steps have been taken to modernize the labor market and to establish the foundations for employment institutions and policies suitable for an open, private-sector led economy.
“World Bank. 2008. Investing in Turkey's Next Generation : The School-to-Work Transition and Turkey's Development. © Washington, DC. http://openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/8084 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.”