Inclusive policy-working with minority ethnic young people for decent work
AffiliationLiverpool John Moores University; University of Chester; Tay Bac University; Phu Xuan University; Hanoi University
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AbstractYoung people are one of the most significant assets in policy making. They contribute insight from the perspective of those affected by a policy or policy change, and as our future community and business leaders. Despite this, the involvement of young people in policy making remains relatively rare in many countries, including Vietnam. Although Vietnam is one of the world’s fastest growing economies, young people experience relatively low wages, job insecurity, job informality and poor working conditions. Policy involvement can raise the awareness and motivation of those involved in policy making, but is challenging because long-standing marginalisation that can make people feel they do not have a voice worthy of consideration by government and other policy makers. Even creative and participatory methods need to be adapted to help young people to feel able to share their voice with those who are older and more powerful in society. This policy briefing outlines how the creative, participatory method of appreciative inquiry can be used to enable policy makers to work successfully with younger people in the context of policies to expand ‘Decent Work’. ‘Decent Work’ is particular category of work which is described by the International Labour Organization as work which is productive and delivers a fair income, security in the workplace and social protection for families, better prospects for personal development and social integration, freedom for people to express their concerns, organize and participate in the decisions that affect their lives and equality of opportunity and treatment for all women and men. Participation of minority ethnic young people in policy making related to Decent Work is critical because of the complex distribution of governmental policy working across the fields of education, work, and culture. Young people offer rich, first-hand insight into the efficacy of policy which in turn should enable all parts of society to contribute economically and socially. Specifically, the briefing pinpoints the preparation needs of younger people, especially those who typically are disadvantaged in economic, educational or other social terms, to engage in such participatory methods, as well as the adaptations needed to enable them to participate and contribute to policy activities. This policy briefing draws from a study examining the empowerment of minority ethnic young people (aged 18-25) to re-vision Decent Work in Vietnam with policy-makers, employers, and university leaders (see overview of study below). This particular brief draws from appreciative inquiry groups which aimed to explore new ways of working and the strategies the project needed to develop to enable the young people to feel they were able to share their voice and contribute (see context of study below). The policy briefing outlines practical ways to facilitate an inclusive approach to engaging minority ethnic young people in dialogue with policy makers and other stakeholders at national or local governmental levels. Whilst the recommendations in this report are directly relevant to national and local governmental policy makers across the policy fields of education and work in Vietnam and similar developing countries, the underlying principles may have a wider resonance and applicability to policy makers across other geographic contexts with similar characteristics. For example, the rising occurrence of informal and unstable work opportunities which do not provide sufficient wage ‘to live’ has been noted for over two decades in the UK and US. Similarly, although the project focuses on policyworking related to Decent Work, the principles have a wider applicability to other policy fields. We invite all national and local government and non-governmental policy makers to consider the practical value of the recommendations and principles within this brief.
CitationWall, T., Hindley, A., Ho, T. H. T., Ngo, N., & Luong, M. P. (2022). Inclusive policy-working with minority ethnic young people for decent work (GCRF Policy Briefing). The British Academy.
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