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Crisis measure action plan youth unemployment 2009-2011 and 2013-2015

Country of implementation
The Netherlands
General short description of the innovation
Nationally supported series of regional programs to combat youth unemployment
Target group
Policy Field
  • education
  • employment
Type of Policy
  • public
  • social partnership
Duration of the policy
2009-2011 and 2013-2015
Scope of innovation
  • Scope: temporary crisis measure
  • Budgets: 250 million for 2009-2011, 25 million for 2013-2015
  • Number of intended beneficiaries: around 130000 youth who are not in school or at work (2008 figures), plus youth at risk of leaving school without sufficient qualification
  • Spatial coverage: national, with partially regional implementation
General description of (intended) objectives and strategies
This innovation is a framework or umbrella programme with large discretion for the implementing labour market regions. The 2009-2011 program consisted of five lines: national program school-ex, to stimulate students with low qualifications to continue studying before entering the labour market; regional action programs adapted to the regional labour market with special attention for vulnerable youth; investments on better matching of youth with employers, with a focus on youth with a migrant background; creation of additional jobs and learning places for youth; additional funds for education and guidance of vulnerable youth with various problems. For 2013-2015 a similar program has started with a strong regional focus, although with much lesser funds available. The objective of the first action plan was to reduce the level of unemployed youth to 115.000, instead of an expected growth of youth unemployment up to 150.000. The second plan does not state quantitative objectives.
Nature of the innovation-short-term perspective
short term intensification of youth unemployment programmes
Type of innovation
  • new form of partnership or cooperation
  • new policy, practice or measure
  • retrenchment or expansion of an existing/earlier policy
New outputs
  • job guidance, coaching and/or counselling
  • learning workplaces
  • training schemes
Clarification of intended mechanisms, outputs and outcomes (optional)
The program had a national and regional dimension. Nationally, programs have been started to avoid students ending their school too early and to make agreements on learning/working places, together with sectoral schooling funds. Regionally, municipalities together with other regional actors received funds to develop programs aimed at matching, guiding or training youth. Each region could determine the contents of the program. This could refer to completely new initiatives, but also to intensification of existing schemes. The program was based on advise from a former minister who was responsible for the successful taskforce youth employment between 2003 and 2007.
Intended target group
Youth 15-27, both at school as well as unemployed. Youth in vulnerable jobs could also participate
Working age population
  • educational level (low/medium/high) (predominantly low educated youth)
  • employment situation (unemployed or employed in vulnerable jobs)
  • main source of income: paid work
  • main source of income: social protection (youth receiving any kind of benefit could be targeted)
Actors involved in policy-making/implementation and/or evaluation
  • agency or national social insurance body
  • central state (financial support)
  • employers (organised or individual) (employers were approached for both jobs as well as learning/working places)
  • municipal government (for activation of youth receiving social assistance as well as regional coordination)
  • private not-for-profit organisations (e.g. Third Sector organisation or NGO) (vocational education schools, national sectoral schooling funds)
  • supra/extra national organisations
Clarification of the role of various actors
The program involved many stake holders at the national as well as the regional and municipal level.
Intended output
  • job guidance, coaching and counselling
  • learning workplaces
  • others (guidance aimed to keep youth at school and to assist them with personal problems)
  • training schemes
  • wages
Clarification of outcomes in terms of impacting resilience and labour market inclusion
The net impact of the programme has not been assessed, this was considered to be impossible, also given other initiatives to place youth. Around 170.000 youth started working during this period and around 12.000 youth have continued their education for one more year. The number of learning work places has increased so that expected shortages did not occur and successful methods were described according to the official evaluation. No data are available on impact on migrant youth. / / According to stakeholders the programme has been a success, both in terms of keeping youth at school as well as in terms of avoiding a rise in unemployment. Moreover, the governance model with large regional discretion, regional cooperation and quick implementation of programmes is considered to be successful. After the first program several organisations however were confronted with heavy budget cuts, which endangered continuation of several schemes. / / Dutch youth unemployment has risen dramatically after 2011, which has been the reason for starting a new action programme in 2013. /
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