Young people today are better educated than their counterparts in the 1970s, but the average time it takes to secure stable work is much longer. This paper explores the nature of young people's transitions from school to work in the capital, with implications for national policy.

Reducing high youth unemployment depends on returning the economy as a whole to growth and high employment. But in the longer term, supporting smoother transitions from learning to earning will require a combined economic and skills strategy to improve the quality of the jobs available to young people and ensure that vocational courses support mobility and progression in the labour market.

A more strategic approach is required to ensure that local educational provision is joined up and caters to the diverse needs of young people. This paper makes four recommendations:

  1. Devolve commissioning responsibility to ensure a more strategic approach to education
  2. Improve the information available to inform young people's choices
  3. Raise the quality of vocational education
  4. Offer a 'something for something' deal to encourage employers to recruit and train young people