What is the EU's role?

To promote youth employment and entrepreneurship, the EU and its member countries work together to:

  • Address the concerns of young people in employment strategies
  • Invest in the skills employers look for
  • Develop career guidance and counselling services
  • Promote opportunities to work and train abroad
  • Support quality internships/apprenticeships
  • Improve childcare and shared family responsibilities
  • Encourage entrepreneurship

How is this being done?

Increasing youth employment is central to the EU's employment policy, within the context of the Europe 2020 growth and jobs strategy

Key actions:

  • The Youth Guarantee is a commitment by all Member States to ensure that all young people under the age of 25 years receive a good-quality offer of employment, continued education, an apprenticeship or a traineeship within a period of four months of becoming unemployed or leaving formal education. It is based on a Council Recommendation adopted in April 2013 following a proposal from the Commission.
  • In its December 2016 Communication Investing in Europe's Youth the Commission proposes a renewed effort to support young people: 
    • Better opportunities to access employment
    • Better opportunities through education and training
    • Better opportunities for solidarity, learning mobility and participation
  • A new initiative is the European Solidarity Corps, which is aimed at creating opportunities for young people to volunteer or work in solidarity related-projects that benefit communities and people around Europe.
  • A Quality Framework for Traineeships has been set up with a view to proposing guidelines for traineeships outside formal education to provide high quality learning content and fair working conditions.
  • The European Alliance for Apprenticeships aims at finding ways to reduce obstacles to mobility for young people.

Youth entrepreneurship

Youth entrepreneurship is high on the EU political agenda as a tool to combat youth unemployment and social exclusion as well as stimulating innovation among young people:

Youth work and non-formal learning play an important role in developing the creative and innovative potential of young people including entrepreneurial skills. Youth policy and programmes at EU and national level support this: