Tag Archives: education

Education Mismatch in North Africa: determinants and impact (report FEM44-13)

Using the SAHWA survey, this paper examines the determiannts and impact of the education-job mismatch in three North African countries . The results show that men and low educated workers are more likely to be in an unmatched situation. The presence of unem- ployed in the household has ambiguous effects (positive in Algeria and negative in Tunisia). Youth living in urban areas are less likely to be in the ”Unmatched situation” compared to young people living in rural areas. The analysis of the distribution of wages by types of job ”Matched” vs ”Unmatched” shows a difference between the countries, with a large positive gap in Morocco, a lower gap in Algeria and no difference between Matched and Unmatched jobs in Tunisia. The estimation of the determinants of wages shows that youth who are in the Unmatched situation earn on average less than youth who are in the ”Matched Situation” at least in the case of Algeria and Morocco. The results show also that men in an Unmatched Situation earn more compared to women in the same situation.

FEMISE MedBRIEF 26: ” Unequal Opportunities in Early Childhood in the Mediterranean”

Moundir LASSASSI, Valérie BERENGER & Touhami ABDELKHALEK

The FEMISE Policy Brief series MED BRIEF aspires to provide Forward Thinking for the EuroMediterranean region.The briefs contain succinct, policy-oriented analysis of relevant EuroMed issues, presenting the views of FEMISE researchers and collaborators to policy-makers.

 

 

 

The MED BRIEF “Unequal Opportunities in Early Childhood in 6 Southern and Eastern Mediterranean Countries”, is available here (in french).

 

Summary

Early childhood is the most important period for human development. However, countries tend to under-invest in this phase of development, particularly in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Children face unequal opportunities to develop because of the circumstances of their birth. This research analyzes inequalities of opportunity in early childhood development in three southern Mediterranean countries (Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia) as well as in three non-European Eastern European countries (EU) (Bosnia , Serbia and Ukraine). The results show that there is a substantial inequality of opportunity from the beginning of life. Various circumstances influence early inequalities, including household standard of living, mother’s education, and geographical differences.

The list of FEMISE MED BRIEFS is available here.

The policy brief has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union within the context of the FEMISE program. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of the authors and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union

Med Change Makers e06 : Alexandra FLAYOLS, Education & Integration of the Marrakech youth

 

FEMISE recently launched its series of interviews called « Med Change Makers ».

« Med Change Makers » are text and video-based interviews that allow dynamic researchers of the FEMISE network to illustrate how their research addresses a policy-relevant question and how it contributes to the policy-making process in the Euro-Mediterranean region.

 

The key role of education in the professional integration of young people in the Marrakech region 

Interview with Alexandra Flayols, Université de Toulon, FEMISE

FEMISE recently published the Policy Brief « The key role of education in the professional integration of young people in the Marrakech region »

Author of the MED BRIEF, Dr. Alexandra Flayols highlights the important role of secondary education in gaining access to paid employment. However, many young people drop out of school early. The analysis of reasons for stopping studies is essential so that public authorities can put in place effective measures. Interview :

1. In this policy brief, early-stage obstacles to the professional integration of young people are explored, notably regarding access to education. However, aren’t there other key factors hindering this insertion? So why is it more optimal to invest in education?

Education is obviously not the only factor influencing the professional integration of young Moroccans. Several studies have highlighted the existence of other factors that can constrain the professional integration of young people. These factors may include previous work experience, the young person’s financial situation, mobility, the socio-professional category of the parents, active labor market policies, etc.

Regarding the factors that can more specifically be attached to the Moroccan case, the place of residence may for example hinder the professional integration of the youth. The region of Marrakech-Tensift-Al Haouz (MTH), which is the subject of this study, is mainly rural (198 rural communes against 18 urban). Although the OCEMO survey (2008) used in this work does not allow to distinguish the place of residence due to lack of data, our results show a differentiated impact of the level of education in urban and rural areas. In addition, the lack of job creation in the private sector, despite the lower dynamic demand for workers in the public sector, which until the 1990s was the largest employer of skilled workers, generates additional insertion obstacles.

We have chosen to focus on education because besides the fact that it is a determining factor of professional integration, it is a central issue in Morocco where education is experiencing considerable difficulties. Moreover, the fact that having a degree does not constitute a protection against unemployment in Morocco, contrary to the case of developed countries, pushes us to pay particular attention to this problem. Investment in education has become a standard in developed countries, however, while it is important for economies to move up the international value chain, it is not a sufficient condition in the access to employment. The match between trainings, formations and the job market is thus particularly important. The quality of education is also paramount and is highly criticized in Morocco.

2. What are the main reasons you have identified to explain why young people quit their studies in Morocco?

The first reason that pushes young Moroccans to abandon their studies is financial (23%). It is followed by lassitude (21%) and poor school results (15%).

The reasons for dropping out of school are indicative of the difficulties encountered in the education system and may also allow public authorities to target their interventions. Thus, by grouping the different reasons for dropping out according to whether they are voluntary or involuntary, we have seen that 60% of young people are quitting schooling; this rate even reaches 67% in rural areas. We observed other disparities by place of residence, but also by gender. Young girls in rural areas are thus more likely to be refused by their parents the right to peruse their studies (12% versus 6% in urban areas). The distance from school is also an important reason for stopping studies since it concerns 19% of young people in rural areas compared with just 4% in urban areas.

3. You mentioned that reaching the secondary education level is an important pre-requisite for young people, both to improve their probability of continuing their studies and their chances of being better inserted professionally. So what do you think is the best way to make secondary education more attractive to young people?

One of the first ways that could be implemented concerns the quality of education which, as we saw in the previous question, could be a means of encouraging young people to continue their studies. In recent years, private schools have experienced a significant growth in Morocco yet, their quality remains questionable and their high tuition fees reinforce the inequalities in access to education between students of wealthy families and those from a more modest social background.

The quality of education concerns its content as well as the supervision and creation of new schools. The language of learning, for example, causes significant difficulties for some young Moroccans. French, which was considered a foreign language, is now used as the language of instruction in higher education for science and economics. Thus, the orientation of young people who do not have the expected level in French is then constrained.

It is also essential to pay particular attention to the opportunities of the sectors proposed, whether for general education or vocational training. This could be an additional motivation for young people to continue in these streams. Finally, the establishment of bridges in the education system could also reduce the number of drop-outs as young people may be able to reorient themselves more easily.

4. As you pointed out, some schooling drop outs are involuntary. What recommendations would you give the public authorities to limit these cases or at least to facilitate the transition of these young people to the workplace?

Among the involuntary reasons for stopping studies, the financial reason is the most important. These results indicate that there is considerable room for maneuver to improve the retention rate of youth in the MTH region. Although the reforms of the late 1990s have improved access to education, it is still limited in rural areas, especially for young women. It is not necessarily about increasing spending on the education sector, but about better targeted measures such as the Tayssir program. The latter aims to reduce absenteeism by granting scholarships to hard-working students from the poorest households. The pilot phase in some rural communes shows positive results, particularly in the highest levels of education. Our results have shown that a woman with a level of education at least equal to secondary school is 1.7 times more likely to have access to a paid job yet, women’s access to education is particularly constrained in rural areas since they are 1.4 times less likely to have access to secondary education than women in urban areas. Measures targeting this subpopulation would therefore be beneficial.

In addition, the hypothesis of a lack of supervision or teachers or inappropriate content of lessons could explain the lassitude felt by young people as well as their academic failure. The quality of teacher training should therefore also be at the heart of the Moroccan government’s concerns. The congestion rate of sophomore class rooms is also high; therefore, less overcrowded classes would, with no doubt, favor better learning conditions.

Lastly, to facilitate the transition to the workplace, partnerships with companies could be envisaged, particularly with regard to vocational trainings. This would make it possible to better target the needs of the labor market like the SIVP in Tunisia. These partnerships could be accompanied by measures to encourage the hiring of these young people whom the company would have contributed to the training.

5. Are there not different trends in the length of studies and different mechanisms behind the professional integration of young women and men? Would that imply separate recommendations by gender?

Although access to education has improved for women, there are still disparities. We do not have precise data on the duration of studies by gender. However, estimates by Barro and Lee (2010) find a gap of 1.67 years in average length of schooling. In addition, parents’ refusal to continue studying is an important reason for young women’s drop outs, especially in rural areas. The pursuit of education for young women therefore seems more constrained than that of men.

Moreover, dropping out could also correspond to the desire to create a family which is a motive mentioned only by young Moroccan women and never mentioned by men. This choice necessarily has an impact on the professional integration of women either because of a too low level of education if they dropped out of school too early or because of the hard reconciliation between their family responsibilities and their professional life.

Mechanisms targeting professional integration should be differentiated by gender. For example, studies show differences both in the implementation of employability strategies and in the exclusion of certain professional spheres. If the authorities wish to improve young women’s access to the labor market, particular attention should be paid to them.

 

[1] Stage d’Initiation à la Vie Professionnelle.

The MED BRIEF is available for download by clicking here.

Interview by Constantin Tsakas

This activity received financial support from the European Union through the FEMISE project on “Support to Economic Research, studies and dialogues of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership”. Any views expressed are the sole responsibility of the speakers.

FEMISE MED BRIEF no13 : “The success pillars of a national innovation system in Maghreb”

Sonia BEN SLIMANE (ESCP Europe) & Maarouf RAMADAN (KEDGE, FEMISE))

The FEMISE Policy Brief series MED BRIEF aspires to provide Forward Thinking for the EuroMediterranean region. The briefs contain succinct, policy-oriented analysis of relevant EuroMed issues, presenting the views of FEMISE researchers and collaborators to policy-makers.

The latest MED BRIEF on “The success pillars of a national innovation system in Maghreb” is available here.

It is also available in arabic here.

AbstractThe perspective of economic growth supported by innovation activity has now proved ineffective for Maghreb countries (Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia). Our analysis under the angle of the national innovation system emphasizes the main causes such as structural weaknesses and lack of time-consuming coordination among the actors of innovation. Our recommendations are based on proposing an appropriate systemic model of innovation that takes into account the specificities of these three countries. The pillars of success of this model are first “Structural”: Setting up an effective “support structures” for innovation and entrepreneurship, offering appropriate tools and complementary services; Second, “Coordination”: Coordinated coherent interactions between public and private actors of innovation in the development of new production methods and the dissemination of knowledge; And third, “Governance”: The rehabilitation of the role of the Government in education, in ensuring and overall coherence of the actor’s actions (regulation protecting innovation, financing of innovation, supporting scientific research activities and an education system favoring the development of a new generation of innovative entrepreneurs).

The list of FEMISE MED BRIEFS is available here.

The policy brief has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union within the context of the FEMISE program. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of the authors and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.

FEMISE MED BRIEF no12 : « The key role of education in the professional integration of young people in the Marrakech region »

 

The FEMISE Policy Brief series MED BRIEF aspires to provide Forward Thinking for the EuroMediterranean region. The briefs contain succinct, policy-oriented analysis of relevant EuroMed issues, presenting the views of FEMISE researchers and collaborators to policy-makers.

 

The latest issue of MED BRIEF “The key role of education in the professional integration of young people in the Marrakech region” is available (in FR) by clicking here.

 

Alexandra Flayols (Université de Toulon)

Summary: The difficulties of young Moroccans, both in terms of their professional integration and in the education system have led us to question the constraints that can weigh on these young people in the pursuit of their studies and their access to paid employment. Our results highlight the important role of secondary education in gaining paid employment. However, many young people drop out of school early. The analysis of reasons for stopping studies is essential so that public authorities can put in place effective measures.

 

The list of FEMISE MED BRIEFS is available here.

The policy brief has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union within the context of the FEMISE program. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of the authors and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.

The need to promote vocational training in Egypt

University education is considered as the royal road in Egypt. It has contributed to the education of far too many students in recent years compared to the needs of the labor market. Vocational education suffers from a lack of image and does not attract young people. However, according to the latest report of Femise, it deserves to be valued given its relevance in the labor market.

In industry, the shortage of technicians hinders the development of companies

Out of 90 million inhabitants, Egypt currently has 2.5 million students. On the benches of the university, enrollment jumped 20% in four years. The budget devoted to higher education has increased from 18 billion pounds in 2013/2014 to 21 billion in 2015/2016 (ie one billion euros). Admittedly, higher education plays a key role in developing countries. But is it necessary to bet on the university when it is skilled workers that lack Egypt? Is vocational training not also a factor in reducing inequalities?

Femise asks these questions in its latest report (FEM 42-10) published in March 2018 entitled ” Inequality and inclusive growth : Are education and innovation favoring firm performance and well-being?” in three parts. The first, coordinated by the economist Inmaculada Martinez-Zarzoso (Jaume I Universities in Spain) in collaboration with Javier Ordonez from the same University and Dr. Mona Said from the American University in Cairo (AUC), analyzes vocational and technical secondary education in Egypt in 1998, 2006 and 2012.

Femise starts from an observation: “The vocational-general education divide results from a phenomenon of class struggle. The elite relegates the members of the “lower class” to technical schools”. In industry, the shortage of technicians hinders the development of companies.

 

Match vocational training to the needs of the enterprises

Despite the government’s effort to encourage technical education, the number of students dropped by 3% in 2012. According to the study, this phenomenon can be explained by the relatively low level of returns to technical education, which continues to decline, compared to returns to university education (especially for men in the public sector). For women, the returns to education are even lower in the public and private sectors, regardless of their education. Note, however, a smaller gender gap exist in the private sector.

Redesigning technical education could help promote social mobility and equity. “The quality and relevance of vocational education are the keys to effective reform. The labor market lacks skilled workers. The technical pathways suffer from social stigmatization” underlines the report. It is high time to revalue the image of vocational education, believes Femise. Apprentices are generally poorly paid. The Skills Development Project, with the support of the World Bank, directly benefits Egyptian enterprises of vocational training schemes.

Femise suggests strengthening partnerships between training institutions and companies with financial support from the European Union. But, “encouraging private companies to invest in vocational education will be of no use if trainees still face social stigma,” warns Femise.

Access the FEMISE FEM42-10 report by clicking here

Article by in partnership with Econostrum 

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Impact of Remittances on poverty and inequality: Lessons from two new surveys conducted in Morocco and Algeria

Migration is a demographic phenomenon of great magnitude. Indeed, migrants accounts for about  215.8 million*, equally divided between men and women. Migration affects all countries, although the so-called developing countries have the highest rates of emigration, it is not only a movement from these countries to the North. Indeed, in 2009, 74 million* people have migrated from a southern country to another southern countries, often sharing borders. The causes of this South-South migration are multiple wars, famines, weather conditions and economic motivations. Migration from the South to the North represents some 97.51 million people whose main motivation is often economic or family reunification. Finally, in 2009, 37.7 million people* migrated from one developed country to another developed country, while 6.5 million* went south.

In most cases of migration from poorer to richer countries, individuals seeking to improve their living conditions. When they do not migrate permanently, they are more likely to send part of the money earned in the host country to their families in the home country. These remittances represent huge sums: in 2010, remittances to developing countries amounted to 325 billion*. Their level has increased sixfold since 1995. This explosive growth is in part due to the increased number of international migrants, but also improving the means available to migrants for effecting such transfers. In addition, the interest in this phenomenon in the literature and government has led to a better statistical coverage of these flows.

The amount of transfers far exceeds development aid in Asia, Latin America, North Africa and the Middle East, and are the main source of external financing in the latter part of the world (to direct investment abroad). The main recipient countries are India (55 billion), China ($ 51 billion *), Mexico (22.6 billion) and the Philippines (21.3 billion) the amount records are due to their very high rate of emigration. For some countries, these remittances constitute substantial financial resources they represent a very significant share of gross domestic product: in 2009, remittances accounted for 35% of GDP Tadjikistan, 28% and 25% Tonga and Lesotho, making these truly dependent countries of migration. In addition to representing substantial amounts, transfers are the only outside income donated directly to households. They have a very significant impact on the welfare recipients in countries where poverty is very present. In addition, these funds are very stable, and counter-cyclical nature allowing beneficiaries to deal more effectively with crises they face.

The importance of money involved has recently relaunched the literature on the broad topic of the impact of remittances to the country of origin. The themes are many, but still a topic particularly analyzed and discussed regarding the impact of remittances on poverty and income distribution in the country. The literature has gripped this for several years and looks into whether this money donated directly to households, allows people in developing countries out of poverty and to make society more equal.

Our study answers the question of the effect of migration on poverty and inequality from the realization of two original household surveys conducted in Morocco and Algeria. We use two original surveys we conducted in Algeria and Morocco with a sample of households with and without migrants and receiving or not receiving of remittances? We compare the levels of poverty and inequality prevalent today than estimated for a situation no migration or transfer to which migrants would be reinstated in local life. The first part presents the work on two Algerian regions of high emigration rates Kabylia and Tlemcen region.