With Clackmannanshire Third Sector Interface (CTSI), we are collaborating with the University of Edinburgh on a PhD research project into youth employability in Clackmannanshire. The researcher is Charlotte Zealley.

The PhD is funded by CTSI and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), and supervised by Dr Jay Wiggan and Dr Elke Heins.
For further information please contact: Charlotte Zealley, c.zealley@sms.ed.ac.uk

The Problem

There are a range of employability initiatives intended to facilitate young people’s transition from school to employment. It is not clear however whether Scotland’s multi-layered, multi-sectoral employability offer provides complementary supports, addressing the different aspects of employability, or manifests as unnecessary and/or ineffective duplication. Nor is it clear how young people navigate options and services or how these feature in the decisions they make around preparing for work. There is a need for a better understanding of the variety and interactions of informal/formal provision, of the conceptualisation of employability than underpin services and how the mosaic of provision is experienced by young people themselves.

The Research Programme

Through a case study of Clackmannanshire, this project will cast light on these issues by examining how third sector organisations in particular contribute to employability support for young people aged 16 to 25. The first stage of the research comprises of interviews with third sector and non-third sector stakeholders involved in the provision of support for young people considered NEET in Clackmannanshire. The second stage of research will involve in-depth research with a selection of third sector employability support initiatives (2-3) in Clackmannanshire, including observations and interviews with young participants. The findings will feed into a knowledge exchange workshop with stakeholders, orientated to collaborative reflection of future employability provision in Clackmannanshire and Scotland.