EKIF - Cyprus Gender Research Centre
The gender of youth unemployment in Cyprus - views and attitudes of the unemployed youth and the employers
- Holding organisation: EKIF (Cyprus Gender Research Centre)
- Status: NGO , non-profit organisation
- Financing: partial funding by National Machinery for Women's rights, Ministry of Justice and Public Order
- People involved in the project: unemployed young men and women
- Public Partners:
- Private partners: Employers Associations and Trade Unions
- Creation Date: May 2013
- Contact Persons: Despina Charalambidou-Solomi
- Main project links: EKIF (EN) - http://www.ekif.org/english/index.html
This project aims at mapping -how unemployment affects young men and women -the needs of the young unemployed -measures and policies that would help unemployed to be re/employed or re/activated -the skills that the unemployed would need to acquire through training and life long education - the role of the employers and of the trade unions in helping to manage youth unemployment
The local context
As a direct result of the country's economic and financial problems, Cyprus has very high unemployment (xxxx). The needs of the young women and young men are likely to differ as well as the skills needed to re-enter the employment market. The voice of the young should be heard. For this reason this project by using qualitative and quantitative methods will offer to the young unemployed and the employers and trade unions - the three main partners - the opportunity to express their views on the causes of youth unemployement, the skills needed for re-entering the employment sector, the policies and measures needed to be taken by the Authorities.
The starting point
EKIF is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation carrying out research from the gender perspective aiming at highlighting gender inequalities and helping to create a more democratic society by abolishing social stereotypes based on gender, religion and ethnic discrimination. EKIF is governed by a 7-member Governing Board. We have managed so far to get only €4,000 from the National Machinery of Women's Rights to begin with but we have to look for other sources of funding as the cost of this project is estimated at €26,000 euro (14,000 for the research phase and 12,000 at the dissemination phase (public conference, publication of research results in Greek and in English).
How does it work today?
The practical steps are as follows: a) to design a questionnaire addressed to young unemployed (men and women); b) design structured interviews with representatives of employers associations; c) design structured interviews with representatives from Trade Unions. Through the public conference, the publication of results, and the uploading of the Report of results on the EKIF Website will ensure that the results of the project become available to all partners involved in employment/ unemployment, policy-making, training and life-long learning.
Participation and Governance
The target will be to get the views of 3,000 young unemployed (men and women). Cyprus has a population of approximately 800,000. The views of the employers by interviewing representatives of KEVE and ΠOΒEK through structured interviews and representatives of the trade unions (SEK, PEO and DEOK). We need to find more funds despite the cuts in the budgets of all government departments in Cyprus.
Added value of the project and making resources available
High unemployment is a new phenomenon in Cyprus and its impact on men and women is unpredictable. The consequences are unforeseeable both for young men and women. For this reason the views and opinions of the young unemployed are very important and should be taken into consideration by the Authorities and government when designing measures and policies dealing with unemployment. The added value would be the gender perspective incorporated at all stages of the research and at the dissemination stage (public conference to present the results, Written Report of the results, hosting the results on the EKIF website. It is estimated that this project will cost €26,000 (14,000 for the research and 12,000 for the dissemination stage).
The main difficulty we have faced so far is financial, mainly because the budget of the government departments is very limited due to the economic and financial crisis.
We are at the very beginning of this project designing the questionnaires and the interviews. We would like the sample to cover the whole of the island in order to represent the country and cities. We would have liked organisations/ universities and NGOs from other EU countries to have got involved in the same project so that a larger group of young people, employers and trade union represenatives voice their views.
Proposals for change
I should be able to answer this question at a later stage of the project.
Other valuable projects
Interesting projects would be how Cyprus tackles unemployment and in particular youth unemployment. Other projects are social markets (κοινωνικά παντοπωλεία) organised by the church, municipalities, run by volunteers and supported by donations or exchange of skills (municipality of Strovolos) and volunteer doctors and pharmacies helping poor people.
Sources and links
Cyprus Gender Research Centre (EKIF): http://www.ekif.org/english/index.html