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Public finance conference 2020: better spending for public service delivery

ODI - 26. Februar 2020 - 0:00
This conference will invite ministers, civil servants and leading academics to reflect on how public financial management can deliver for public services.
Kategorien: english

Public finance conference 2020: better spending for public service delivery

ODI - 26. Februar 2020 - 0:00
This conference will invite ministers, civil servants and leading academics to reflect on how public financial management can deliver for public services.
Kategorien: english

Social protection papers of 2019

INCLUDE Platform - 27. Januar 2020 - 12:22

It has been a very exciting year for social protection! In 2019, my weekly social protection links newsletter reviewed 1042 materials in 43 editions. So here is a personal selection of papers articulated around 10 major themes. Enjoy!

1. Economic and other long-term effects

Daidone et al have a great article summarizing and explaining the economic effects of cash transfers in 7 African countries. Egger et al add another precious data point on the multiplier effects of cash transfers (I counted 12 such points for the moment): in Kenya, every $ injected generates $2.6 in the local economy.

Blattman et al show that after 5 years, a one-off cash grants in Ethiopia has fading effects. Similarly, in Malawi Baird et al estimate that the impact on reduced fertility of an unconditional cash transfers on adolescent girls rapidly vanished.

In Mexico, after 20 years of operations cash transfers ex-beneficiaries showed higher ownership of durable assets (Aguilar et al); 49.2% of them experienced upward mobility (Yaschine et al); they grew 2.8-4.1cm taller and have 5.3-5.7 more years of schooling than their parents (Gutierrez et al), with enrollment in secondary school increasing by 5-10 percentage points over grades 7-12 (Behrman et al). A 10-country review by Millan et al found that the evidence is strong on school completion, more mixed on learning, and limited on employment. Another paper by Millan et al estimate that 13 years after its inception, transfers in Honduras increased secondary education completion by 50%, but also rose the chance of migration by 3-7 percentage points.

2. Health, nutrition and education

Klein et al show that cash transfer participants in Buenos Aires showed higher success rates against tuberculosis (TB); yet Rudgard et al estimate that making transfers “TB-sensitive” would require an additional budget between $165M and $298M per country. Choko et al showed that in Malawi cash plus HIV self-test kits increased HIV anti-retroviral therapy compared to other solutions. Palermo et al find that in Ghana, combining cash and health measures increased enrolment in health insurance in the treatment group from an average of 37.4% to 46.6%.

In Ecuador, Moncayo et al show that a 1% increase in the coverage of cash transfers decreases mortality from malnutrition by about 3%. In Nigeria, Okeke and Abubakar estimate that cash reduced mortality of children in utero by at least 20%. Celhay et al found that cash increased the survival rates of birth cohorts exposed to the program by up to 14.7%. and Dow et al find that in the US, a 10% increase in the Earned Income Tax Credit or in the minimum wage reduces suicides between 3.6 and 5.5%.

In Ghana, Gelli et al found that the national school meals program improved stunting among children of 5-8 years (effect size: 0.12 standard deviations). Neufeld et al on the history of nutrition evidence on cash transfers in Mexico. And a paper by Evans and Yuan shows that girl-targeted versus general interventions in education seem to deliver similar gains, including featuring cash transfers both at the top and bottom among the most effective interventions.

3. Gender

Peterman et al summarize the impacts of safety nets on gender in Africa: safety nets perform well in reducing physical violence as well as improving psychological well-being, dietary diversity and savings. But changes in labor force participation are minimal. In terms of toolkits, FAO produced great guidelines on gender-sensitive cash transfers and public works.

A review of evidence on social assistance and intimate partner violence (IPV) by Hidrobo and Roy shows reductions in physical violence between 25-41% in Bangladesh, Ecuador, and Mali. Another brief by Heise summarizes results from 22 studies across 13 countries.

4. Crime

Tuttle shows that banning convicted drug felons from SNAP food stamps in the United States makes them more likely to return to jail. Sviatschi estimates that in Peru, cash transfers reduced drug production. And in Brazil, Machado et al find that Bolsa reduced homicide rate and hospitalizations due to violence by 8-25%.

5. Crises

Barca and Beazley estimate that it takes between 2 weeks to 14 months to scale up social protection in response to natural disasters. Bruck et al show that a new generation of 7 high-quality evaluations sheds light on social protection in fragile and displacement settings. Cherrier et al produced an excellent compendium on humanitarian-social protection linkages, while Seyfert et examine the trade-offs of integrating refugees into national safety nets.

6. Universality and targeting

A new book by Gentilini et al offers a framework to navigate the analytics, evidence and practices on universal basic income (UBI), while Banerjee et al discuss how UBI may address barriers like lack of credit, insurance or psychological factors among low-income people. Jolliffe et al show that SNAP, the American “floor for the poorest”, has been sinking over the past 30 years.

ILO and UNICEF have an overview note on “universal” child grants present in 21 countries, while Kidd and Athias offer a critique of proxy means testing. In Indonesia, Tohari et al estimates that the poverty-based unified database of beneficiaries improved the chance of participating in 3 core programs by 117%, while Bah et al estimate that if all households were included in such database undercoverage would be reduced by one-third. Bonus: Ndiaye et al trace the evolution of the national social registry in Senegal.

7. Insurance and labor markets

Packard et al examines how social protection could be adapted to the changing nature of work, while Jorgensen and Siegel unveil social risk management 2.0. Guven shows that in Africa only 10.6% of Africa’s working-age population contributes to pension schemes. The ILO has a fascinating “living document” laying out a number of options disaggregated by occupation.

review of minimum wages in high-income countries by Dube finds “… muted effect of minimum wages on employment, while significantly increasing the earnings of low paid workers”. However, a new compilation of evidence on minimum wage in low and middle-income countries by Neumark and Corella finds that “… when minimum wages are binding and enforced, and when they apply to vulnerable workers, the disemployment effects are most apparent”.

8. Tech and financial inclusion

Gelb and Mukherjee take stock of lessons from India’s biometric ID (Aadhaar) in providing inclusive services; Masino and Nino-Zarazua show that transitioning to electronic cash payments in Mexico increased households’ access to formal financial services. In South Africa, however, Torkelson documents abuses in using cash transfers as loan collateral by a financial company delivering cash itself.

9. Political economy

Hickey et al have an amazing open-access book on the political economy of cash transfers in Africa. Mosec and Mo found that in Pakistan those receiving BISP cash transfers increased support for their political leaders and institutions, while in typhoon-hit Fiji Rios et al show that people receiving cash transfers are up to 20% more likely to be very satisfied with the government than non-recipients. In Brazil and Turkey, Zucco et al show that conditional transfers are only marginally more popular than similar unconditional transfers. Ciminelli et al find that reforms generating large short-term adverse distributional effects are associated with electoral costs for politicians. In Mexico, Cantu documents that cash-vouchers to be used in local supermarkets were provided in exchange for electoral support.

10. Cash plus and cash versus….

In Bihar, Khemani et al asked whether people prefer cash or other services: only 13% chose cash instead of spending on public health and nutrition; in contrast, if cash came in lieu of improving roads, preference for cash rose to 35% (see counter views). In Mozambique, De Walque and Valente compare the effects of a conditional cash transfer program with the sole provision of information to parents on school attendance: information provision is as large as 75% of the effect of the CCT.

Two papers – one on Ghana by Banerjee et al and another on Uganda by Sedlmayr et al – points to the power of combining cash transfers with assets and complementary measures (as opposed to individual components). Also, Carneiro et al evaluate an integrated cash program for 3,600 mothers in Northern Nigeria: after 2-4 years, the program reduced stunting by 8%. Bonus: Bedoya et al show that a package of transfers and assets in Afghanistan increased consumption by 30% and poverty fell from 82 to 62%.

This blog was originally published on the ‘Let’s Talk Development’ blog by the World Bank. Please find the original post through this link.

Het bericht Social protection papers of 2019 verscheen eerst op INCLUDE Platform.

Kategorien: english

Afrikas ungenutzte Wirtschaftspotenziale

GDI Briefing - 27. Januar 2020 - 9:00

In Subsahara- Afrika fehlen produktive Arbeitsplätze. 84 Prozent der Erwerbsbevölkerung dort sind nur informell beschäftigt, ohne festen Vertrag, kalkulierbares Einkommen und Arbeitsschutz. Insgesamt fehlt 360 Millionen Erwerbstätigen „gute Arbeit“. Durch die wachsende Bevölkerung kommen jedes Jahr 13 Millionen Menschen neu auf den Arbeitsmarkt, Tendenz steigend. Um den riesigen Sockel an informeller Arbeit über eine Generation abbauen zu können und die, die neue Arbeit suchen, zu beschäftigen, müssten jedes Jahr um die 25 Millionen neue Jobs geschaffen werden, die ein menschenwürdiges Auskommen ermöglichen. Gelingt dies nicht, drohen in der Region interne Konflikte, Flucht und Migration von bislang nicht gekanntem Ausmaß. Aber woher soll all diese Arbeit kommen?

Zunächst die gute Nachricht: Viele Länder in Ost-Asien standen noch vor wenigen Jahrzehnten vor den gleichen Herausforderungen. Länder wie Südkorea, Taiwan, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam und China haben diese Schwierigkeiten gemeistert. Die Basis ihres Erfolgs legten vor allem arbeitsintensive Exportindustrien, wie Elektronik und Bekleidung. Diese schafften schnell sehr viele Arbeitsplätze, die zwar einfach waren, aber produktiver und besser bezahlt als die vorhandenen Jobs in der Landwirtschaft und im Kleinstgewerbe. Die Erwerbstätigen konnten Ersparnisse bilden und diese in andere Wirtschaftsbereiche investieren. Zugleich entstand Kaufkraft für neue Produkte. Schritt für Schritt diversifizierte sich die Wirtschaft, neue Industrien entstanden, die wiederum nach hochwertigen Dienstleistungen verlangten. Produktivität und Einkommen stiegen auf breiter Basis, auch im ländlichen Raum. Nun die schlechte Nachricht: Ein solcher Strukturwandel findet in Afrika bislang nicht statt. Ein dynamischer Wirtschaftszweig, der massenhaft Arbeitskräfte absorbieren könnte, ist nirgendwo in Sicht.

Nun finden in der Weltwirtschaft gerade tiefgreifende Umbrüche statt: Digitale Technologien revolutionieren Industrie, Handel und Kommunikation. Der Klimawandel zwingt zur Dekarbonisierung. Die Kaufkraft wachsender globaler Mittelschichten und die Bioökonomie treiben den Wert von Agrarflächen in die Höhe. China wird zum Hochlohnland und überlässt die arbeitsintensiven Leichtindustrien ärmeren Ländern. Industrieländer werden protektionistischer, während innerhalb Afrikas eine neue Freihandelszone verabschiedet und grenzübergreifende Infrastruktur ausgebaut wird. Afrikas Bevölkerung zieht vom Land in die Städte. Viele Karten werden also neu gemischt. Aber bieten sich damit neue Chancen für einen massiven Aufschwung „à la Ostasien“?

Analysen des DIE zeigen: Ja, es eröffnen sich neue Chancen für Exporte aus der Region – aber keine hat das Potenzial, millionenfach gute neue Arbeitsplätze zu schaffen. Afrika könnte sich auf Nahrungsmittel für die Welt spezialisieren, indem es Agrarflächen besser nutzt. Dies erfordert jedoch vielfältige Modernisierungsmaßnahmen und muss behutsam gestaltet werden, um sozial inklusiv zu sein. Afrika könnte zudem Energie für die dekarboniserte Weltwirtschaft liefern, basierend auf unschlagbar guten Solar- und Windbedingungen. Ökostrom würde in chemische Energieträger zur Stromspeicherung, in Kraftstoffe zur Mobilität oder Rohstoffe für die Chemieindustrie umgewandelt werden. Verarbeiter könnten an die Stromstandorte gelockt werden. Das Potenzial dieses sogenannten „Power-to-X“ ist riesig, allerdings sind die Industrien nicht arbeitsintensiv. Afrika könnte auch von Chinas steigenden Löhnen profitieren und exportierende Bekleidungsindustrie anlocken. Mit Ausnahme Äthiopiens kann allerdings derzeit noch kein Land mit Asien konkurrieren. Außerdem könnte Afrika Online-Dienstleistungen exportieren – wie es Unternehmen in Nairobi vormachen – oder nachhaltigen Tourismus und Kulturdienstleistungen ausbauen. Aber all dies sind bislang eher Nischenpotenziale.

Weitaus größere Chancen liegen in der Binnennachfrage. Verstädterung, das zeigt die Geschichte, senkt die Pro-Kopf-Ausgaben für staatliche Basisdienstleistungen und macht dadurch die Arbeit produktiver. Innovationen verbreiten sich schneller. Einkommen und Kaufkraft steigen, Lebensstile diversifizieren sich – und damit auch die Wirtschaft. Die ländliche Elektrifizierung, heute dezentral durch erneuerbare Energien kostengünstiger, wirkt in ähnlicher Weise dynamisierend. Wenn die Panafrikanische Freihandelszone AfCFTA wie geplant umgesetzt wird, schafft sie attraktive Marktgrößen für afrikanische Unternehmen. Digitale Technologien erleichtern Transaktionen.

Die Länder der Region benötigen Zukunftsprogramme für einen inklusiven Strukturwandel. Einerseits, um die Potenziale der Binnennachfrage strategisch für lokale Arbeitsmärkte zu nutzen – die boomende Bauwirtschaft, die Konsumgüternachfrage der Mittelschichten, die ländliche Elektrifizierung – anstatt das Gros der Vorleistungen zu importieren. Andererseits, um neue Exportchancen frühzeitig zu identifizieren und zu Wachstumsmotoren auszubauen: Agrarprodukte für Asiens Mittelschichten, Power-to-X für Europa, online-Dienstleistungen, den Tourismus, die Bekleidungsindustrie. Diese Potenziale sind von Land zu Land sehr unterschiedlich. Kluge Strukturpolitik besteht darin, Märkte der Zukunft zu antizipieren und für die eigenen Arbeitsmärkte zu nutzen.

Kategorien: english

Exchange Rate Undervaluation and Growth in China

DEVELOPMENT - 27. Januar 2020 - 0:00

The widely held belief that China’s undervalued exchange rate has been crucial to its rapid industrialization and economic growth over the last four decades is critically qualified and nuanced. In any case, renminbi (RMB) appreciation, rising wages with exhaustion of its labour surplus, growing domestic demand and slowing international trade and growth following the 2008 global financial crisis have reduced China’s economic growth.

The Soldier, The Terrorist, and The Woman: A Gendered Analysis of Enforced Displacement in Northwestern Pakistan Post 2014

DEVELOPMENT - 27. Januar 2020 - 0:00

After the enforced displacement of around 1.7 million civilians from Federally Administered Tribal Areas in 2014, as a result of Pakistan’s military operation ‘Zarb-e-Azb’ against terrorist insurgencies located in the said area, the military were celebrated, while issues of enforced displacement were relegated to the backseat, with rudimentary charitable actions executed to eulogize the sacrifice of the Pashtuns, already existing on the periphery. This article focuses on Pashtun women who can be described as the marginalized of the marginalized, existing outside the realm of authority and politics, wholly ignored by the state and the military with respect to their absence in repatriation policies and unthought of by the metropolitan nationals and self-proclaimed intellectuals.

Call For Session Proposals for the C20 Face-to-Face Meetings

#C20 18 - 26. Januar 2020 - 9:04
Consistent with previous C20 procedures and the C20 2020 Action Plan, the C20 Secretariat is pleased to launch a Call for Session Proposals for the C20 2020 Face to Face Meetings that will take place from Sunday, March 22 to Tuesday, March 24. The call for proposals is open to Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and CSO [...]
Kategorien: english, Ticker

Tackling drug-resistant TB in South Africa

Devex - 25. Januar 2020 - 17:16
Kategorien: english

Davos 2020: wrap-up

Devex - 24. Januar 2020 - 20:05
Kategorien: english

Christina Chang, Vital Strategies

Devex - 24. Januar 2020 - 18:53
Kategorien: english

The drive for quality education worldwide, faces ‘mammoth challenges’

UN #SDG News - 24. Januar 2020 - 18:02
Aligning inclusive, quality education with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) was centre-stage on Friday, as the President of the UN General Assembly held a high-level interactive meeting for the International Day of Education.       
Kategorien: english

Rwanda’s Initiative YouthConnekt, Rwanda

futurepolicy - 24. Januar 2020 - 12:33

Rwanda’s YouthConnekt Initiative (2012) is a multifaceted and innovative programme that empowers youth, connects them to the private sector, government employment and entrepreneurship opportunities, and strengthens their civic engagement and leadership. Around 600,000 young people have participated in national YouthConnekt Month every year since 2012 through hands-on activities in their communities and thousands of jobs have been created. Already, 12 African countries have subscribed to the YouthConnekt model. As of 2017, the YouthConnekt Africa Summits aim to transform the continent with potent young actors by creating 10 million jobs for youth in sustainable job environments reducing gender inequalities.

© Photo Credit: Ministry of Youth and Information Technology, Rwanda


YouthConnekt is a unique, homegrown and innovative initiative that connects youth to private sector and government employment and entrepreneurship opportunities and off-farm jobs. It provides a set of policies for youth empowerment, but also looks beyond to provide a virtual platform that connects youth, the private sector and the government through social media and events. The initiative is part of the Government’s goal to engage young people in building up the country and enhance their economic empowerment. In terms of civic engagement, YouthConnekt fosters youth participation through the National Youth Council and contributes to raising intergeneration awareness about the genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda in 1994. The programme was initiated in 2012 by UNDP in partnership with the Government of Rwanda and One UN Rwanda. Since its implementation in May 2013, it has evolved to become a flagship programme for the Government of Rwanda and across Africa. The comprehensive approach addresses environmental, IT, health, social, cultural and economic key issue areas. The programme has reached thousands of young Rwandans (aged 16-34) and contributed more than 4,000 off-farm jobs.[1] YouthConnekt was endorsed by the African Union as a major implementing modality of their African Youth Charter. An important spinoff of the YouthConnekt has been its popularization and scaling up, leading to the creation of YouthConnekt Africa (2017). The programme is aligned with Rwanda’s ambitious national goals to transform into a green economy and a fair One Rwanda, as well as supporting Agenda 2030 and numerous SDGs, particularly 1, 3, 5, 8, 9 and 16. Due to the above, its innovative, participatory and holistic approach, and its full respect for the Future Justice Principles (7/7), YouthConnekt is a very good candidate for the Future Policy Award 2019.

Context in which enacted

In Rwanda, young people represent 28% of the total population with 70% of these young people living in semi-urban or rural areas.[1] The Government of Rwanda has set a yearly target of achieving an average economic growth rate target of 11.5% so as to attain a middle-income economy by 2020. In this regard, youth play a significant role in the country’s overall social, political and economic development. Nonetheless, young people are facing significant cross-cutting issues, such as limited access to education and finances, health problems, scarce employment opportunities, low wages and exclusion from local decision-making. In Rwanda, unemployment is overwhelmingly an urban phenomenon, as most youth in rural areas are employed in the agriculture sector (with low productivity) that accounts for 90% of the labour force.[2]

In 2015, the revised National Youth Policy[3] of 2006 was published, taking into account the Post-2015 global agenda and the SDGs.[4] The policy underpins the shift from social to socio-economic empowerment with clear alignment to Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS2),[5] especially its two pillars: economic transformation and productivity and youth employment. The main vision of this new policy is to achieve a Health, Aptitude/Attitude, Patriotism, Productivity, and Innovation – HAPPi Generation. The policy sets out a holistic set of strategies for actions to achieve the Government’s focus on youth economic empowerment by addressing issues related to unemployment and underemployment.[6] A gender inclusive and rights-based approach is applied to the development of all youth programmes, and a multi-sectorial strategy involving partnerships between governments, development partners, private sector, civil society organizations, and communities is the foundation of the policy. Furthermore, the policy establishes comprehensive and targeted youth programming through economic empowerment with a strong emphasis on mainstreaming job-based budgeting in all sectors, youth involvement in private sector activities, improving skills acquisition through TVET training and more. The policy envisages the decentralization of youth structures and a strong mobilization mechanism at the village level. ICT is regarded as a key driver for economic development and, as such, the policy defines a clear mechanism to foster synergies between youth and ICT, and sets out measures to ensure that the formal education curriculum is tailored to the needs of the job market.

Rwanda has opted for a green economy approach to economic transformation with green growth and green technology fostering the creation of more opportunities for youth. The policy aims to enhance skilled human resources, to increase awareness about environment protection, natural resources conservation and climate change among youth, and for them to be both actors and beneficiaries.

“Boosting YouthConnekt” is one the key policy Actions/Flagships mentioned in the policy of the new established Ministry of Youth in 2017,[7] and receiving their strong support to ensure youth’s representation in policy making and decision making.

[1] Rwanda Youth’s statistic:

[2] The vast majority are on farm and informal sector workers and engaged in activities of extremely low productivity, low earnings along with precarious conditions which can be considered as vulnerable employment and thus qualifying them to be underemployed. According to Statistical report EICV 3 THEMATIC REPORT 2011, 60% of the young population aged 14-35 are employed, 4.1% unemployed and 37% are inactive. Further analysis indicates that 61% of the employed youth are self-employed and 67% of them are primarily in agriculture. In general unemployment rate is highest among young women as compared to young men but much higher in urban areas

[3] The policy has been inspired by the principles and guidelines recommended by the Baku Commitment to youth policies as set out in the declaration marking the end of the 1st Global Forum on youth policies held in Baku (Azerbaijan) from 28-30 October 2014.

[4] National Youth Policy, Towards a HAPPi Generation, 2015. The policy also revised the definition of youth in terms of aged 16-30 years.

[5] Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy

[6] The policy also aims to address limited skills, low rate of access to finance and markets, mismatch of current education curriculum vis a vis skills required on both local and global labour market, high population growth in relation to economic growth, poor monitoring of the vast sector, among others.

[7] The former Ministry of Youth and ICT has been split into two dockets

Stakeholders and beneficiaries

Responsible: Government of Rwanda through the Ministry of Youth jointly with UNDP Rwanda, One UN Rwanda and the National Youth Council.

Stakeholders: Ministry of Youth and ICT (MINIYOUTH), National Youth Council, Youth Connekt Africa, UNDP, One UN Rwanda, UNFPA, Koika, Imbuto Foundation, Digital Opportunity Trust Rwanda, Smart Africa, Girl Effect Rwanda, Inkomoko, World Vision and DMM.HeHe Ltd. Also, this includes policymakers, researchers, farmers, consumers, businesses, investors, and the funding and donor communities.

Beneficiaries: All young women and men living in Rwanda (and across Africa) – with a strong focus on gender and marginalized groups such as youth with disabilities, teen mothers and young people in refugee communities.

Purpose and Objectives

YouthConnekt was initiated by UNDP[1] in 2012 in collaboration with MYICT[2] and UN Rwanda with the aim to provide a virtual platform that advocates for youth, facilitates employment, job creation and entrepreneurship skills, and connects youth to socio-economic transformation through social media and events. It widens the pool of economic, social and civic leadership opportunities through national and regional initiatives such as connecting youth to their peers, role models, resources, skills and economic opportunities and also offers an avenue for entrepreneurial adventure into new areas like ICT and artisanship. In addition, YouthConnekt is strongly linked to civic engagement and economic empowerment. One of the core purposes of YouthConnekt is to nurture a positive attitude among Rwanda’s youth that encourages them to be more upfront and ready to “learn and unlearn” realities in order to forge a brighter future. With the history of the Genocide against Tutsis in 1994, the initiative also targets a patriotic and inclusive approach. The initiative builds on the Government’s visions for the country and scaling up the (youth) workforce to a (green) transition to become a middle-income country and is backed-up by the revised National Youth Policy 2015. Youth are considered powerful actors for building up the country and key to the successful implementation of the National Youth Policy.


A range of steps has been taken towards the decentralization of youth structures and to ensure the mobilization of youth up to village level, with special consideration towards youth with disabilities. The Ministry of Youth is the main coordinator of the YouthConnekt programme and works through the National Youth Council (NYC), a body that is by law responsible for coordinating, advocating, designing and implementing youth friendly programmes with its own budget.  NYC represents youth and their elected leaders (3,000 youth from various parts of the county – rural and urban) to report on the outcomes of the programme and obtain further inputs, as well as to ensure and evaluate fairness in the distribution of services.

By connecting young people with leaders from the public, private sector and the civil society, YouthConnekt also aims to create a space for youth to meaningfully participate in Rwanda’s socio-economic transformation, realize the economic dividend, and be potent actors and driving vectors in the implementation of Agenda 2030 and of “the Future We Want in Africa”. It is against that background that UNDP and the Government of Rwanda organized the first Regional YouthConnekt Africa Summit in July 2017 in Kigali[3].

[1] Youthconnekt is part of UNDP’s “Joint Youth and Women Employment Program” and “The Joint Youth Program”

[2] The former Ministry of Youth and ICT

[3] The summit was chaired by the President of the Republic of Rwanda Paul Kagame. It gathered more than 3,000 participants including political leaders, members of the private sector, civil society, donors, academia and successful young entrepreneurs, artists and youth opinion leaders from across the continent. The Summit provided a platform for all partners and stakeholders involved in youth development in Africa to synergize around policies, programmes and partnerships

Methods and modalities

The programme combines the development of entrepreneurship skills with access to jobs and finance, raising awareness on issues related to youth development in terms of civic engagement and economic empowerment, and the promotion of youth citizenship.

Within the feature “Learn”, the National Leadership Dialogue provides a platform for youth to learn from past mistakes (especially the Genocide against Tutsi) and includes a session in which the youth can meet and pose questions to national leaders including, among others, President Kagame and The First Lady. The “Meet The President” annual event is included alongside those objectives. Within the feature “Unlearn”, youth are equipped with a wide variety of knowledge, skills development and entrepreneurship, as well as access to jobs, finance, and civic education, and opportunities for engagement in policy making, increasing their access to health services, raising awareness on issues related to youth development, promoting youth citizenship through community work, and inclusion in local and national policy dialogue[1].

[1] According to informant FPA 2019

The programme YouthConnekt consists of seven components:

  YouthConnekt Convention
  • Annual event that gathers youth from all districts of Rwanda and abroad. The aim is to inspire young people with new ideas in order to promote sustainable development, economic growth and social progress and to bring regional level youth representatives to speak up to the government.
  • Provide a platform for young people to address the issue of restoration of their identity and enhance unity and reconciliation
  • Annual competition that brings together top 90 young innovators country wide, three per each district. The 30 best innovations are awarded and the three finalists win best prizes. Aim: young people will be able to showcase their technology developments and acquire skills and knowledge about running a business.
  • Awards in partnership with IMBUTO Foundation. Aim is to recognize significant efforts that have been made by public sector, private sector, civil society and NGOs in steering their activities, focus, resources and determination towards youth.
  • A portal of interactions of youth with their peers, leaders, and role models for inspiration and sharing opportunities through video chats and live streaming on established Google+, Youtube, TV and radio channels (main medium to disseminate)[1].[1] It connects young people to mentorship, to information, to resources and is a way to reach more young people with role models and started leveraging through a platform called “Google Hangouts”. They hold panel sessions and stream them live into universities or secondary schools. Topics such as product certification, 25 years post genocide etc. are covered using readily available technology and Internet infrastructure.
  • A platform to reinforce the capability of YouthConnekt Awardees, and other promising innovators, with regular knowledge skills and practical business advice (failures and successes) in order to promote business growth and foster job creation. This is also a linkage mechanism for business expansion opportunities
  • A commitment of youth to contribute to national development through hands on activities. This is also a tool for raising awareness among communities about youth’s contribution to nation-building and developing future-just solutions to challenges they encounter in their communities.

The programme is financed by several stakeholders who contribute financially or in-kind[1].

[1] When initiated by UNDP a dedicated funding mechanism was launched by UNDP to encourage development solutions through the most up-to-date concepts and means. A substantive funding close to 2 million USD from the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) was secured that has now been signed for another a four-year funding to support the scaling-up of the YouthConnekt initiative. The National Youth Council receives a budget from the government.

Impact and influence

Since its launch in 2012, Youthconnekt is said to have reached thousands of young Rwandans (age 16-34) and contributed more than 4,000 off-farm jobs, according to its website[1]. The programme has created a strong network of young entrepreneurs, policy influencers as well as a platform to share opportunities, advance skills, construct collaborations, promote promising entrepreneurs and showcase achievements.

  • Thousands of young Rwandans have been involved in civic engagement activities such the construction of thousands of houses for vulnerable people in their respective communities, and the rehabilitation of roads, bridges, classrooms and other facilities.
  • Youth actively participate in relevant policy discussions and have recommended different programmes and policy formulations, such as having youth representation in all levels of decision making in the country’s administration.
  • Recently created start-ups were granted the two-year’s tax exemption by the Revenue Authority. “The Made in Rwanda policy” has put in place measures to facilitate entrepreneurs who are in the manufacturing sectors. Youth entrepreneurs have gained more visibility and support, which increases their likelihood to succeed.
  • YouthConnekt Rwanda has spurred the creation of 4,000 off-farm jobs for youth.
  • Thousands of young men and women have been engaged in positive values programmes through physical and digital platforms, and have been directly involved in both decision-making and economic empowerment.
  • More than 18,000 youth have been directly engaged in national policy dialogues.
  • More than 20 YouthConnekt debates known as ‘Hangouts’ have been organized, raising awareness among more than 13,000 youth on issues such as employment, entrepreneurship, and ICT.
  • 46 TV shows were produced and broadcast on both Rwanda national television and radio, raising awareness among more than 1 million young men and women on the importance of technical and vocational training, ICT skills and attitudes to boost youth entrepreneurship and job creation.
  • Four YouthConnekt boot camps were organized to coach 360 young innovators selected from the 30 districts of the country, awarding a total of 120 innovators. Within only three years, the YouthConnekt boot camps have resulted in the creation of about 1,000 permanent jobs and 2,700 temporary jobs.
  • Four YouthConnekt conventions have been organized gathering 12,000 youth around the national dialogue platform discussing youth related issues and providing opportunities to contribute to national policies.
  • Five ICT competitions were organized, aimed at boosting the ICT and mobile application environment in Rwanda including the MsGeek competition, which encourages young women to showcase their skills in ICT, and a mobile app competition to improve public service delivery provided by the Government of Rwanda. These competitions resulted in the training of 100 youth and the creation of 25 startups.
  • Thousands of youth have participated in three YouthConnekt months organized to engage them to actively participate in the country’s development.

The 2017 Summit marked the official roll out of YouthConnekt and the creation of YouthConnekt Africa[2] aimed at empowering African Youth to take a more proactive role in shaping the bright future of the continent, and established several new components: a) YouthConnekt Africa Summit; b) YouthConnekt Africa Hub; c) YouthConnekt Africa empowerment fund; and d) YouthConnekt Innovation.


[2] Objectives of YouthConnekt Africa: Create 10 million jobs for youth by 2020 in sustainable job environments in emerging industries; Create 25 million opportunities through training & enrolment in workplaces to empower youth; Identify, nurture and grow 1 million leaders that provide solutions, participate in advocacy & become role models in their communities; Connect 100 million young Africans to develop sustainable initiatives & policies that reduce gender inequality in education, jobs, technology & leadership; Form a ‘hub of hubs’ to connect incubation hubs across the continent and provide access to markets, innovation-friendly capital from partners, and partnership opportunities with peers across the continent; Nurture 5,000 digital ambassadors in each country to help connect & digitally empower 100,000,000 Africans, allowing skills to be transferred to their local communities; Close the gender disparity: he for she, MsGeek (digital & tech field) etc..  UNDP started the Africa YouthConnekt Hub and Youth Empowerment Fund to which Chinese billionaire Jack Ma bestowed $10 million and announced ground-breaking projects.


YouthConnekt is recognized as a model that can be replicated and scaled across Africa. YouthConnekt is also recognized as a Continental Initiative -“Connekting youth for continental transformation”[1]. As such, ten countries[2] have already subscribed to the youth connect model and several more are expressing an interest in engaging in the process of subscribing to the model. The YouthConnekt programmes in these countries are not necessarily similar to what Rwanda is implementing but the principles are similar, to ensure that YouthConnekt is a “consortium of partners” coming together in order to combine resources, learn together and co-invest. Such concerted efforts ensure that youth have access to opportunities, to mentorship, to markets, and to “civic engagement in terms of bringing young people to the highest level of decision-making as much as addressing the issue of economic empowerment”.

[1] The African Union Executive Council (2019) cited YouthConnekt as a programme that can fast-track the African Union 2063 agenda and the (Pan-Africa) youths charter.

[2]The Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Congo Brazzaville, Sierra Leone, Uganda, Zambia, the Gambia, Cameroon, Ghana, Zimbabwe, plus the Spanish island of Cabrera.

Complementary laws and policies

Rwanda’s National Youth Policy, 2015; National Youth Councils, 2017; and Made in Rwanda policy, 2017. This youth policy is in alignment with the Rwanda Vision 2020, the Employment Policy (2006), the National Employment Programme (NEP), the National Information and Communications Infrastructure (NICI) Plan and the Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS2), the National and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Policy (2008), the Education Sector Policy (2003), the National Policy for Family Promotion (2005), the National Gender Policy (2010), the Rwanda Sports Development Policy (2012), the National Culture Heritage Policy (2014), and Rwanda’s National Forest Policy (2014).

Qualitative Future Justice Law and Policy Standard evaluation results

Principle Evidence & Informant Comment

Sustainable use


●       YouthConnekt is aligned with various SDGs, mainly 1, 3, 8, 9, 16.

●       Impressive number of innovative approaches. The initiative has been able to bring and align resources with partners effectively & efficiently.

●       The initiative is cost efficient und works in partnerships

●       “EcoBrigate” Program: reinforce the participation of youth in strengthening the resilience of communities and ecosystems.

Equity, social justice, ending poverty


●       Focus on vulnerable groups (e.g. teen mothers, young refugees, with disabilities)

●       Follows the principle of “leaving no one behind”. Ensures that the systems are supporting a fair process under a multi-stakeholder perspective.

●       Promote civic engagement and economic empowerment of youth and gender equality.

Precautionary approach


●       Youth centres are at all levels and offer spaces for sports, discreet sexual reproductive health, information about risky behaviours (e.g. substance abuse), etc.

●       Conducted tracer survey that looks at the impact of our entrepreneurship programmes.



●       Developed digital platforms that can convene larger number of youth and continuous feedback process to improve.

●       National Youth Council – the body that represents youth and encourages their elected leaders to speak up for youth.

●       Offers formats to interact with policymakers, employers and other stakeholders.



●       Strong leadership from all involved stakeholders.

●       Cooperates with multi-stakeholders including civil society, private, public.

●       Recognizes youth are the future leaders.

Integration and interrelationship


●       Brings together various government agencies, civil society, private sector.

●       Is a flagship of the National Youth Policy.




●       Promotes youth empowerment and gender equality and creates inclusiveness for all.

●       Focuses on the ‘learn and unlearn’ concept to nurture a positive attitude of youth.

●       Highly inclusive: no cost for vulnerable groups and youth.

The post Rwanda’s Initiative YouthConnekt, Rwanda appeared first on

Kategorien: english

Two pager series: The future of work, skills and industrialisation in Africa

INCLUDE Platform - 24. Januar 2020 - 12:21

On 16 January, Marleen Dekker from INCLUDE joined the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs seminar ‘Globalization, digitalization and the future of work and skills’. During the panel discussion, following a roundtable with Minister Sigrid Kaag on the future of work that highlighted the opportunities and challenges that the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) poses to employment and skills needs, Marleen emphasized the need for realistic thinking on how the 4IR impacts Africa and what can be done to make sure that new opportunities do not increase existing inequalities.

To support this discussion, INCLUDE produced four articles which address complementary aspects of the debate on the employment, skills and industrialisation in Africa:

  • In search of structural transformation: ‘Made in Africa’ and industries without smokestacksby Obadia Miroro tackles the issue of weak job creation in productive economic sectors. It discusses various strategies to revive growth, such as boosting domestic manufacturing, attracting foreign investment and developing high-productivity services and agribusiness, and stresses the need to protect against the exploitation of labour and raw materials.
  • Advancing Africa’s Capabilitiesby Hannah Itcovitz makes a distinction between those already left behind due to inequalities in basic capabilities, and those at risk of falling behind again as global shifts demand higher skills, knowledge and connectivity. Given the African context, with both a unique demand for skills and unique challenges in providing them, this two pager calls for strengthening educational quality and minimising inequality to avoid unintended losers from digital developments.
  • Small is beautifulby Caspar Swinkels shows the continued importance of formal and informal small economic units (SEUs) in providing jobs and skills to African people and shaping economic transitions. It shows the additional constraints faced by SEUs as they attempt to grow and highlights the need to include SEUs (including informal operators) more actively and centrally in skills, labour and structural transformation policies.
  • A fourth article by Agnieszka Kazimierczuk (forthcoming) presents how the future of work in most African countries will likely differ from that of more advanced economies, and how the region’s employment challenges stem mostly from high population growth, low levels of industrialisation and poor connectivity as opposed to widespread automation.
Download each of the articles by clicking on the relevant title link and find them in the relevant items listing below.


Het bericht Two pager series: The future of work, skills and industrialisation in Africa verscheen eerst op INCLUDE Platform.

Kategorien: english

Theses for the European Re-Formation

Simon Maxwell - 24. Januar 2020 - 10:25

Theses for the European Re-Formation





In a lifetime roaming the world, Europe has been a binding thread.

  • It is 1954. I am six. My parents have moved to Belgium and I am learning French so that I can enrol in the Antwerp Lycee.
  • It is 1958 or so. I am on a school trip, visiting the trenches of the First World War and the Menin Gate at Ypres, staring up at the list of names. Or I am squashed with my brother into the back of my parents’ Morris Minor, travelling along the Rhine, through Cologne and Koblenz, or along the Rhone Valley and into the Alps. Or, still in the back of the car, I am stuck with the family at the frontier between Holland and Belgium, waiting while the woman in front tries to blag her way through the border with an illegal quantity of butter.
  • It is 1964. We are back in the UK. I sit at the back of the class in ‘A’ level French, excused the grammar and allowed instead to lose myself in the school library of French literature.
  • It is 1967. I am in Jerusalem on a gap year. I stand silent in Yad Vashem, the memorial to the Holocaust.
  • Now we are into the 1970s. I am with the UN, in Kenya and India, my closest colleagues from those countries, and also from Finland and Sweden, Italy, France, Germany and Greece.
  • We have arrived in the 1980s and 90s, I am researching poverty, food security and aid, learning inter alia about the idiosyncracies of the European Commission and its aid programmes, not least in Sudan and Ethiopia.
  • Into the 2000s, building partnerships with European think-tanks – in France and Germany, in Italy and Spain, in the Netherlands, in Eastern Europe and in Scandinavia. Events in Nicosia and Valetta, Sofia and Budapest, Stockholm and Warsaw. And always Brussels.
  • It is June 2016. We are on holiday, in the Pindus Mountains of northern Greece. I have been listening to the radio all night. I wake Cathy at dawn. Our country has voted to leave the EU. Over breakfast, sitting in the sun, we watch tearfully as David Cameron resigns.
  • 2017-19. Article 50 has been triggered. I march. I speak at events. I write. I give evidence to parliamentary enquiries. I liaise with fellow think-tanks. I vote. To no effect.
  • Now, January 2020. Finally, we are leaving.

An opportunity to reflect and reconnect.

First, we should not be leaving the EU, of course. It can be ponderous and inefficient, over-ambitious in its reach, misguided in its spending, and often better at policy proposals than actual change, but there are layers of culture and calculus underpinning our engagement with the institutions of the EU.

Second, it is hard not to be angry about Brexit. Angry with those who called the referendum. Angry with all those who failed to make the case to remain and reform. Angry with those who gave Brexit its prospectus and impetus. And angry with the EU itself, for the failings of the euro, the migration crisis, and the lack of democratic fizz. When we left the Pindus mountains, I read J’Accuse: it is time for a modern Emile Zola.

Third, we are still ‘European’ in geography and values. Article 2 of the Lisbon Treaty still acts as a signpost: ‘respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, . . .  in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail.’ Don’t mention the backsliders.

Fourth, the problems we face cannot be solved without international cooperation: climate change and environmental degradation, shared prosperity in a globalised world, conflict, crime.

Fifth, that means we must find new ways to collaborate with the EU – in trade, finance, security, climate, the movement of people, research. In the words of the Political Declaration that accompanies the Withdrawal Agreement, that means an ‘ambitious, broad, deep and flexible partnership’.

Sixth, who knows, one day we may rejoin.

In the meantime, though, what principles should guide us? What should equivalent be of Martin Luther’s 95 Theses of 1517 (which I now learn, disappointingly, were probably not nailed to the door of All Saint’s Church in Wittenberg)? I can’t manage 95, but here are 27 ‘Theses for the European Re-Formation’.

On ethics and objectives

1. Article 2 of the Lisbon Treaty provides a guide: ‘respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, . . .  in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail.’

2. The Sustainable Development Goals provide concrete expression of these ideals.

3. But the SDGs are a destination, not a road-map. Best to take them seriously, as has been said, but not literally.

On the development challenge

4. The development challenge is about more than plugging away at the SDGs.

5. Uneven globalisation, automation and climate change threaten major dislocations, in some cases existential.

6. That means rethinking development paradigms, as has been done in the past, for example (Structural) Adjustment with a Human Face.

7. The challenge for development leaders is to tread a path between neo-liberalism and populism of right and left.

On the scope of development policy

8. Development cooperation is about hitting a moving target, and achieving the SDGs within countries and for all people, in poor and rich countries.

9. But that requires action also across national boundaries, to deliver regional and global public goods.

10. That is why multilateralism is essential to successful development action.

11. Aid is a vital instrument of development cooperation, but far from the only one. Finance, trade, migration, security, and climate action are all part of the development mix.

On the assets and advantages of the EU

12. Multilateralism is at the heart of development cooperation, and the EU is at core a multilateral organisation.

13. However, the EU is only one of many multilateral options open to development actors, so must always analyse its strengths, weaknesses, and comparative advantage. 

14. The EU is unique in the multilateral development space in its combination of political, economic and security assets. The UN, for example, cannot match the EU in financial terms. The World Bank cannot match it in the political and security spheres.

15. The EU has global reach and global expertise.

16. But do not forget, the EU needs constantly to reform and renew.

On culture and calculus

17. An attachment to shared European values and enterprise play a big part in the commitment to the European Union. This is ‘culture’.

18. But self-interest also plays a role. This is ‘calculus’.

19. The European Union is most successful when it acknowledges both culture and calculus.

On UK-EU collaboration after Brexit

20. The UK is a world leader in development thinking and action, with a similar range of instruments to the EU and a similar geographical reach.

21. If multilateral cooperation is key to development success, then the EU needs Global Britain and Global Britain needs the EU.

22. Partnership cannot mean one party subordinating its role or procedures or accountabilities to the other.

23. That means joint action on shared objectives – for example on climate change, fragile states, or growth in Africa.

24. Which might but probably does not mean merging programmes.

25. And does not mean that there will not be some competition, for example on investment opportunities in Africa. Instead the model is one of cooperative competition.

26. Underpinning future cooperation must be preserving the friendships and mutual understanding built up over many years.

27. So that one day, maybe, the route back will be unencumbered.


This is just a first list. I would like to crowd-source the next draft. Add your comments below. Or download a Word version of the Theses (here) and amend. Or just print what we have already in the form of a scroll (available here as an A3 pdf) and stick it in an undamaging and environmentally sustainable way to the nearest church or other public building. You can Tweet a photo of your work or post other comments. Use the Hashtag #Europeanre_formation.

You can also download the emoji picture used above as a document (here) or A5 pdf (here).

Kategorien: english

Job creation, health care and public involvement in decision-making

GIZ Germany - 24. Januar 2020 - 1:20
: Tue, 21 Jan 2020 HH:mm:ss
Delivering rapid and tangible improvements in Libya while paving the way for long-term stabilisation.
Kategorien: english

International Green Week 2020: Climate-friendly solutions for sustainable development

GIZ Germany - 24. Januar 2020 - 1:20
: Fri, 17 Jan 2020 HH:mm:ss
Under the motto ‘Sustainability connects us all worldwide’, GIZ will be showcasing projects for sustainable growth in Berlin that are good for people and kind to the environment.
Kategorien: english

Helping the climate: joining forces for sustainable rice

GIZ Germany - 24. Januar 2020 - 1:20
: Mon, 23 Sep 2019 HH:mm:ss
Joining forces can stem climate change in agriculture. An alliance for sustainable rice shows how this can work – and farmers benefit too.
Kategorien: english

Creating arable land behind weirs in Ethiopia

GIZ Germany - 24. Januar 2020 - 1:20
: Mon, 16 Sep 2019 HH:mm:ss
Climate change, droughts and floods make arable farming virtually impossible in the Ethiopian lowlands. Weirs are used to collect the precious water and store it in the soil.
Kategorien: english

Securing climate finance through national development banks

ODI - 24. Januar 2020 - 0:00
This report examines the role of national development banks in the transition to low-carbon, climate-resilient global growth.
Kategorien: english


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