Young people not thriving in rural areas

Despite relatively high standards of living, several indicators show that large groups of young people in the Nordic countries are not thriving. In addition, regional variations in the situation of young people across the Nordic countries are striking.

Some attempts have been made to map the unhappiness among young people in the Nordic region. But so far, none have focused on regional variations within national boundaries or have taken the comparative Nordic perspective you will find in this policy brief.

In the project, Rural perspectives on spatial disparities of education and employment outcomes, we focus on youth in rural areas of the Nordic region who are marginalised in terms of labour market participation, training and education. The findings suggest that the living conditions that mainly influence displacement among young people are poor physical health, poor mental health, lack of income opportunities, unemployment and limited social contact.

The final report will be published in the middle of 2019.

Research Assistant Alex Cuadrado talks about the factors that make young people from Nordic rural areas fall behind in terms of participation in school and employment rates, and also discusses ways to address this issue and re-engage youth in society: