Youth Employment: STYLE Handbook

Edited by Jacqueline O’Reilly, Clémentine Moyart, Tiziana Nazio and Mark Smith

This book sets out to examine the effects of the Great Recession on youth employment. Despite considerable variation across Europe, even in better-performing countries significant pockets of youth struggled to make successful and sustainable transitions into employment.

The contributions to this volume summarise the findings of a large-scale EU funded project on Strategic Transitions for Youth Labour in Europe (STYLE). The project provides a comprehensive analysis of the causes of youth unemployment and assesses the effectiveness of labour market policies. Authors here discuss the distinctive characteristics of the current phase of youth employment including labour market flexibility, skills mismatch, migration, family legacies and the increasing role for EU policy learning and transfer.

The book includes over 90 authors and more than 60 individual contributions intended to provide an accessible summary covering the breadth of research conducted, giving a platform for young people’s own perceptions and providing an analysis of what needs to be done.

“The inter-European discourse on policies that work, or do not work, regarding youth unemployment is not yet well developed. Most of the analytical work is one-dimensional in terms of disciplines or approaches. The European policy discourse, if any, is dominated by mainstream economics, which sees the youth unemployment problem only either in macroeconomic failures (EU-fiscal crisis) or in wage distortions unfavourable to youth (e.g. minimum wage, insider-outsider cleavages). This book is quite different and therefore a must read: It will stimulate mutual learning both in terms of policy exchanges as well as interdisciplinary fertilization.”

Prof Günther Schmid, Professor Emeritus Free University Berlin, and Director Emeritus of the Research Unit “Labor Market Policy and Employment”, Berlin Social Science Center (WZB)

“Presented in a rigorous yet easily accessible form, written for busy people, this book is essential reading for policy makers and researchers. Statistical analyses of large datasets are skilfully interwoven with detailed analyses of European institutions and descriptions of individuals’ lives – sometimes harrowing, sometimes uplifting. It is the clearest guide yet as to how the last 10 years have affected young peoples’ transitions into adult life and work.”

Dr Brendan Burchell, Department of Sociology and Magdalene College, University of Cambridge

“This book is difficult to summarise easily. It represents the outcome of several years of research by many partners on the EU Style project. But it is not just another book. Results are presented in easy to read and short formats with summaries that direct the reader to the main findings. There are many different sub-projects about migration, young mums, changing school to work transitions, experiences of disablement, so-called NEETS (not in Education, Employment or Training) and so on. Readers will find plenty of material here, whatever their interests. The book brings together academic research with adventures and experiences of young people within the project and beyond. It includes stories, music, biographies and other imaginative ways of telling about young people’s worlds in contemporary Europe. There is a special section on policy directions and how they can be developed from these diverse sources for those who might be interested. In fact everyone can find something of interest in this many-faceted book and, if they are want to follow up on something, can turn to more detailed reports, links or recommended readings. So it is much more than a book. It is an anthology of contemporary youth experiences.”

Prof Claire Wallace, University of Aberdeen and former President of the European Sociological Association

“This volume offers great discoveries for a very broad audience as it summarizes conceptually rich and methodologically rigorous analysis of causes of youth unemployment in an accessible format. It represents collaborative research at its very best. The insights generated by the STYLE project suggest lessons that should enhance the opportunities for our youth to gain economic and social independence.”

Prof Marge Unt, Coordinator of EXCEPT (, Head of Institute of International Social Studies, Tallinn University

“Extremely wide-ranging in scope and yet detailed in analysis and evaluation this book offers plenty of lessons for policy makers and anyone else interested in improving employment opportunities for young people in Europe today.”

Prof Jochen Clasen, Professor of Comparative Social Policy, University of Edinburgh

Download PDF of printed version

Available in paperback from Policy Press

Copyright © 2017 STYLE.

All rights reserved.

Youth Employment: STYLE Handbook is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial 4.0 International License.

To view a copy of this license, visit or send a letter to Creative Commons, 444 Castro Street, Suite 900, Mountain View, California, 94041, USA.

Published by CROME

STYLE is an EU FP7 funded large scale integrated research project coordinated by CROME. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no. 613256.

The overarching aim of the STYLE project has been to conduct high quality research to develop theory and knowledge, inform policy-making and public debate, and engage users of research within the field of youth employment.

ISBN 978-1-910172-17-9 (paperback)
ISBN 978-1-910172-18-6 (ebook)

Cover design: JacksonBone
Design and typesetting: JacksonBone
Printed and bound by One Digital