Random readings on society, politics and change – Jorge Carrillo
Across the world, many emerging economies find themselves at a critical juncture known as the “demographic dividend”.
This report presents evidence on the role of small cities in shaping the migration and labor market opportunities of young workers, especially women and migrants from non-metropolitan backgrounds. It argues that national governments in emerging economies like India and Indonesia ought to consider the ‘where’ of the demographic dividend, and in turn give more policy attention to diverse non-metropolitan places – secondary cities, small towns and “rurban” geographies. Through primary research in case cities, it outlines how small cities are experiencing important economic transitions and related forms of human mobility, offering a range of opportunities for young people seeking education and employment. Small cities already play important roles in helping youth realize their economic potential, but major challenges remain – especially in forging employment pathways for workers and sustainable futures for small city economies. And while they present labor market opportunities to young women and migrants, small cities can still do more to support these groups in navigating the challenges and opportunities that come with living and working in places that are neither rural nor metropolitan.
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