Young Workers and Employment: The extent, structure and security of employment for young workers in Northern Ireland

This Research InBrief looks in detail at how young workers have been faring in the labour market in Northern Ireland since the 2007-2008 Global Economic Crisis.

Young workers

It presents evidence on the rate of employment and the structure of employment arrangements amongst young workers in Northern Ireland. In particular, we focus on the extent, structure and security of employment for young workers and how this has been changing over time.  Young workers are defined within this Research InBrief as those aged 16-24.

Looking at trends in the rate of employment it is clear that the 2007-2008 economic downturn had a deep negative effect on employment amongst young workers, from which they are still seeking to recover.  Additionally, whilst we might expect the youth unemployment rate to be higher than the working age rate, the gap between the two has widened since the 2007-2008 economic crisis.

Structural changes in the labour market since the economic crisis in 2007-2008 have significantly altered the nature of employment in Northern Ireland for young workers. Employment for young workers is now much more likely to be part-time and insecure in nature.

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