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School-to-work transitions after two decades of post-communist transition: what’s new?

Roberts, Ken and Pollock, Gary and Manasyan, Heghine and Tholen, Jochen (2008) School-to-work transitions after two decades of post-communist transition: what’s new? Eurasian journal of business and economics, 1 (2). pp. 103-129. ISSN 1694-5948


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This paper uses evidence from a series of studies of young people in a total of 12 excommunist countries, but mainly from surveys in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia in 2007, and discusses changes and continuities since the early-1990s in typical labour market experiences. It is argued that the continuities outweigh the changes. In the early years of transition new career groups were created during the undermining of old types of employment and the emergence of new market-led employment opportunities. There have always been differences between countries, and between regions within countries, in the proportions of young people following different career routes. Similarly, there have been changes over time in some places in the proportions following the different career paths. Yet the evidence indicates that the career paths themselves have remained remarkably constant over time, and across different territories. The main career groups are: i. A small group who obtain jobs paying salaries that will support a western-type lifestyle. ii. Continuous regular private or public sector employment. iii. Business. iv. Under-employment. v. Unemployment. The paper discusses the processes that have created and which are maintaining the divisions between these groups

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