The world is facing a major shift in demographics. In fact, by 2050, Africa will be home to a billion young people. With so many of the world’s youth concentrated in Africa, countries have the advantage of large working-age populations, and could be looking to capitalize on a “demographic dividend.”
But the economic contribution of young people will depend on the skills they possess, placing a premium on education. Unfortunately, many countries in Africa are struggling to educate their current youth, and projections in coming decades predict millions more will be left behind. According to the latest UNESCO Global Education Monitoring Report, based on current trends, sub-Saharan Africa will not achieve universal secondary school completion until after 2080. On top of the issue of schooling completion, millions of young people who do complete school still lack even basic literacy and numeracy skills, and recent estimates from the Education Commission find that more than half the world’s youth in 2030 will not meet even low levels of proficiency.
ORBIS is powered by ESPAS, the European Strategy and Policy Analysis System, a unique inter-institutional project aimed at strengthening the EU's efforts in the crucial area of forward planning. ESPAS brings together the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Secretariat General of the Council of the European Union and the European External Action Service to strengthen the Union's collective administrative capacity to identify and analyse the key trends and challenges, and the resulting policy choices, which are likely to confront Europe and the wider world in the decades ahead.