Tackling early school leavers and trying to reduce the one million NEETs in England will be the focus of new Europe wide research which will be coordinated in the UK by Middlesex University researchers.
Led by Antwerp University, the research group has been awarded a £5.4 million European Union funded grant to take on a five year project, of which Middlesex University will receive £855,260.
It will look at early school leavers and their association with youth unemployment. The research will provide insights into the reasons why people leave school early and the potential for early school leavers to enrol in alternative learning paths such as training schemes. The project team also hopes to identify the groups of youngsters most susceptible to becoming NEETs (not in education, employment or training).
Professor Louise Ryan and Alessio D’Angelo at Middlesex University’s Social Policy Research Centre are taking on the project in the UK as part of the European Union funded EU Framework 7 Programme which investigates the wide impacts on society of youth unemployment.
Professor Louise Ryan said: “There are more than one million young people not in education, employment or training in England and this is a critical issue. We will identify and analyse the measures that will help the UK and other EU countries share knowledge and keep young people in education and training.
“It’s vital that we influence EU and national policy makers, senior school staff, academics and civil society.”
The study is the latest high profile project awarded to the University’s Social Policy Research Centre, which has carried out previous successful research including focusing on Inequalities and Multiple Discrimination in Access to Health and vulnerable young people and schooling.
Dean of Middlesex University’s School of Law Professor Joshua Castellino said: “This is an important achievement for the Social Policy Research Centre and demonstrates its reputation as a site of research excellence.”
The team will focus on nine partner countries including the UK, Belgium, Spain and Poland. Professor Louise Ryan and Alessio D’Angelo will lead the UK team in coordinating an EU wide survey of over 28,000 participants.