On June 20, 2013 the Brookings Center for Universal Education co-hosted an event with the Alliance for International Youth Development and Restless Development on how to ensure that youth feature prominently in the post-2015 development agenda. The recent release of the United Nations High-Level Panel (HLP) on the Post-2015 Agenda’s report, “A New Global Partnership: Eradicate Poverty and Transform Economies through Sustainable Development,” has prompted a conversation within the youth development community about how youth issues such as health, education, employment and political participation have the opportunity to be included in the post-2015 development agenda in an unprecedented way.
Speakers included Xanthe Ackerman, associate director at the Center for Universal Education at Brookings; Jamira Burley, executive director of the City of Philadelphia Youth Commission and member of the U.N. Secretary General’s Global Education First Initiative Youth Advocacy Group; Steven Feldstein, director of USAID’s Bureau of Policy, Planning, and Learning; and Victoria Forsgate, Global Advocacy manager at Restless Development. The event was moderated by Sarah Sladen of the Alliance for International Youth Development. The panelists discussed various challenges in ensuring that youth remain on the post-2015 agenda and the cross-cutting nature of youth issues overall. Panelists agreed that while youth have been included in the 12 goals suggested in the High-Level Panel report, having a specific thematic goal devoted to youth issues would provide more direction and accountability for the global community to make youth a priority.
Outcomes of the event included a discussion about specific actors at the global policy level to influence, such as high-level political targets like the Open Working Group, HLP members, U.N. agencies, donor governments, corporations, foundations and youth champions such as Queen Rania and President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. The participants also agreed to convene a conversation with different actors within the youth community to work collectively.