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Youth agrifood system employment in developing countries: a gender-differentiated spatial approach

Despite a burgeoning literature on youth employment, little is known about the economic activities of rural youth, including whether rural transformation, seen through the lens of the agrifood system will create new opportunities for youth.

Using data on hours worked of working-age individuals in four age cohorts and a rural-urban gradient based on population density in Africa, Asia, and Latin America households, this study provides empirical evidence on this gap in literature.

Youth appear to access off-farm AFS opportunities more easily than non-AFS ones, especially wage employment in urban and peri-urban zones. These findings dispute the narrative that youth do not enter farming and cannot get wage jobs, as youth work substantial hours in both sectors with distinct spatial patterns.

Launched in March 2016, the IFAD Research Series brings together cutting-edge thinking and research on smallholder agriculture, rural development and related themes. The Series includes rigorous reviews and studies on a broad and diverse range of themes related to IFAD’s work in smallholder agriculture and rural development. The research papers are authored by researchers and technical experts from IFAD and partner institutions and are based on research, statistics, technical work or field-based work.

All papers can be found on the IFAD website

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