Sri Lanka’s NEETs: An Analysis of Youth not in Education, Employment or Training

Research team

Ashani Abayasekara
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Neluka Gunasekara


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Published Year

March 2019


US$ 15 (for hardcopy)

The concept of NEET—referring to young people Not in Education, Employment, or Training—focuses not only on those who are jobless, but also on those who lack access to learning opportunities or those who are inactive in the labour market. In other words, it devotes attention to young individuals who have given up looking for work or those who are unwilling to join the labour market.  The consequences of being NEET are grave, and extend beyond the individual to the economy and society as well. As pointed out by the ILO (2013), because they are neither improving their future employability through investment in skills nor gaining experience through employment, the risk of both labour market and social exclusion is particularly high for NEETs. In view of such adverse consequences, it is important to identify root causes and determinants of falling into NEET status, so that appropriate policies can be devised to ensure the productive engagement of young persons in the economy.