This is one of a series of reports examining shifts in the aspirations of youth for livelihoods, education and qualifications following the policies of economic liberalisation introduced from 1978. It examines shifts over time through comparisons of youth aspirations with the recollected aspirations of the youth’s parents. The study of aspirations is based exclusively on interviews with household members from different class groups. This report focuses on households in Neluwa, a Sinhala Buddhist village in the Southern Province.In Neluwa, most of the livelihood activities are based on small-scale tea holdings, while some households run small businesses. Some individuals have government jobs. Key findings from the surveys include:
- 33% of females and 22% of males are unemployed
- around two-thirds of young people (41% of females and 15% of males) aspire to university education and believe that they have the means to attain that goal
- three-quarters of young people had vocational aspirations, and almost all believed they had the means to achieve their aspirations
- young men were more likely to aspire to computer-related vocations, while young women were more likely to desire dressmaking related qualifications
- though more young people aspire to foreign/private sector employment than did their parents, a significant number still hope for work in the government sector.
Institute of Education, University of London, UK. Report Number 8, 81 pp.