Education and window of opportunity

Anne Goujon, Vienna Institute of Demography

The level of education of the work force in a country could be an indicator if it can or will be able to utilize the demographic window of opportunity. Education, like population has a large momentum and is therefore easier to predict than other indicators that could be influential in the realization of the window of opportunity such as level of unemployment. Through the example of three countries (Guinea, Zambia, and Nicaragua), we will show that although the projected decline in dependency ratio will make it easier for the countries to expand their educational enrolment ratios, the heritage of the past decades level of investment or lack of investment will strongly influence the ‘quality’ of the human capital in the countries, whatever is done from now on, at least for the next two to three decades.

Presented in Session 138: Window of opportunity: the demographic dividend