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Exploring the transition from informal to formal jobs and its consequent impacts on the livelihood of migrant youths in Lagos metropolis

Oluyemi T. Adeosun, Kayode E. Owolabi, Idongesit C. Eshiet, Temitope J. Owolabi

Abstract: Purpose: The upsurge in global youth migration remains a major concern for policymakers, politicians and academia at large. Given the emerging interests in youth migration and informal jobs in cities around the world, this study aims to establish the barriers limiting the transition of migrant youths, in informal settings, into formal jobs and the consequent impact on their livelihood. Design/methodology/approach: Leveraging the push-pull approach of the functionalist migration school, this study uses a primary research design. A structured questionnaire was administered among 150 migrant youths who were selected across informal settings in Lagos, using a convenient sampling technique. Then, a structured face-to-face interview was later conducted among 40 selected migrant youths. Findings: There is a skill mismatch between the competence of the youths and the requirements of firms in the formal sector, and the migrant youths are largely disenfranchised from opportunities that flow within certain networks. Another critical constraint includes language barrier, ethnicity and religious biases by certain employers. Most migrant youths are economically better off compared to where they came from, even though they are yet to exit the poverty trap. Originality/value: This study critically examined the challenges faced by the migrant youth population in Lagos, Nigeria, in their bid to transition from informal employment to formal employment.
Keywords: Formal jobs / Informal jobs / Informal settings / Livelihood / Youth migrants

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