Start-Up Skills Training for the Youth. Evidence from an Experiment in Ghana
The strong performance of Ghana's economy over the last two decades has not resulted in job creation and improvements in employment conditions, especially among youth. Among the factors that influence unemployment in Ghana, inadequate access to education, limited financial capital for youth, and the absence of the entrepreneurial training required for creative thinking, innovation, and collaboration in the curriculum of most schools are of prime concern. These and related factors lead most graduates in Ghana into searching for formal sector jobs, which can only absorb a few graduates, rather than self-employment. Many businesses started by young entrepreneurs do not survive. This pilot project conducts a randomized controlled trial (RCT) of a promising approach that incorporates ideas from behavioral economics targeted at improving self-motivation, future-orientation and proactive mindsets, complemented with support for business registration. The project is focused on recently graduated students from universities across Ghana to test whether these treatments will help promote self-employment and entrepreneurship.