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Title: The informal sector and youth unemployment : prospects for labour absorption in Zambia.
Author: Mandela, Mabel.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3617 9354
Awarding Body: University of Sussex
Current Institution: University of Sussex
Date of Award: 1990
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The thesis discusses characteristics of youth unemployment in Zambia and the prospects of absorption of youth labour in the urban informal sector. This is done on the basis of both primary survey and secondary sources. The informal sector given the right support has the potential to generate economic growth. Unemployment is severe among the youth who are newcomers to the labour market. The problem of labour absorption in Zambia is investigated especially since the fall in copper prices and structural adjustment which has not created jobs. A combination of inadequacies of domestic policies and international recession have certainly contributed to the economic decline. The government mismanaged the initial copper boom. The country has relied on a single export commodity, copper. The employment problem has to be crucial in the context of a dual economy. Many variants e.g. population growth, rural urban migration and the paper qualification syndrome explain the supply of labour. The population is skewed in favour of the youth and most migrants are educated in search of an urban job. This helps to explain the high unemployment rate among the youth. The thesis concentrates on formal and informal sectors as evidence of dualism. Formal sector prospects are limited for well known reasons e.g. shortages of resources, fall in copper prices, price distortions, import substitution policies, development patterns and capital intensive technology which restrict employment potential. On the other hand, the informal sector which is labour intensive appear to have employment potential. Lack of minimal skill and capital among the youth, which are prerequisite in the informal sector act entry as barriers. This is in particular substantiated in the thesis on labour demand. The youth's views towards the informal appear to be negative. The mismatch between the youth's education and expectations explain this attitude. The possession of a school certificate raises expectations which make youngsters withhold their labour during their first job search. The youth desire white collar employment. The approach adopted is qualitative rather than quantitative because of nature and limitation of data. For instance, unemployment is not without statistical and definitional problems.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Labour studies