Learning & Development Asia 2024
Malaysia ranks 35th globally for youth development

Malaysia ranks 35th globally for youth development

Of the 183 countries included in the 2023 YDI, 166, or 90.7%, recorded improvements over 2010-2022.

In the Global Youth Development Index (YDI) Report 2023, Malaysia ranked 35th among 183 countries studied, and sixth in the Commonwealth ranking, moving up five spots from its 2020 position and achieving a YDI score of 0.802.

As highlighted in a ⁠Facebook post by TalentCorp Malaysia, citing an infographic by MyHeart, out of the 183 countries, Malaysia excelled in two areas of youth development: 

  • eighth best in the world for employment and opportunity 
  • eighth best in the world for equality and inclusion

Here are some other highlights from the 2023 results:

Global progress

Singapore had the highest level of youth development in the 2023 YDI (0.686), followed by Denmark (0.862), Portugal (0.848), Iceland (0.847), and Slovenia (0.845).

Afghanistan had the lowest score of 0.515, followed by Central African Republic (0.536), Niger (0.543), Chad (0.554), and Somalia (0.582).

Of the 183 countries included in the 2023 YDI, 166, or 90.7%, recorded improvements over 2010-2022. The five countries recording the greatest improvements from 2010 to 2022 were Haiti, Côte d’Ivoire, Myanmar, Indonesia, and Burkina Faso.

⁠On the other hand, Niger, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen, and Angola recorded the largest deteriorations.

⁠On average, the top five most improved countries saw their scores rise by 13%, while the five largest fallers saw an average deterioration of 4.0%.

⁠All six YDI domains saw their global averages improve since 2010. However, the global average scores on political and civic participation are still the lowest in absolute terms, reaching a peak of only 0.321 in 2021 and staying constant in 2022, suggesting that there is a need to invest more in enabling the environment for youth engagement in governance, decision-making, and civic action.

⁠The largest global improvement was recorded in the employment and opportunity domain, which improved by 6.1% between 2010 and 2022. Meanwhile, the peace and security domain recorded the smallest global improvement, with its global score improving by only 0.22%.

⁠All of the nine global regional groupings used in the report recorded improvements in their average YDI scores between 2010 to 2022.

Looking deeper, Sub-Saharan Africa recorded the largest improvement in its average youth development levels, at 3.81%. This region was followed by South America, South Asia, the Asia Pacific region, and the Russia and Eurasia region.

Commonwealth progress

From 2010 to 2022, Commonwealth countries saw an average youth development improvement of 2.6%, slightly below the global average of 2.8%. Since 2020, the improvement has been just 0.24%, indicating slow progress.

In the 2023 YDI, 94% of Commonwealth countries improved their scores with Singapore in the lead, followed by Malta, Cyprus, New Zealand, and Brunei. Mozambique remains the lowest-ranked, followed by Lesotho, Nigeria, Malawi, and Tanzania. 

Over the past 12 years, the Commonwealth has made progress in all six YDI domains, with the most improvement in political and civic participation and employment and opportunity. Thanks to the Commonwealth Youth Programme, these countries are performing better than the global average.

However, political and civic participation scores are still the lowest overall. The highest average score of 0.339 was reached in 2016, declined, and then returned to 0.339 in 2021, staying there through 2022. Despite improvements since 2010, this domain remains weak.

Peace and security showed the smallest improvement, with a 0.75% increase over 12 years, still above the global average. 

However, scores have slightly declined since 2019, indicating a weaker peace and security environment.

Over two-thirds (62%) of Commonwealth countries are in the low and medium categories of youth development. Tracking YDI progress is crucial to develop strategies to improve these countries' performance and understand the impact of COVID-19 and a changing global environment.

About the YDI

The Youth Development Index (YDI) is a resource for researchers, policy-makers and civil society, including young people, to track progress on the Sustainable Development Goals associated with youth development.

Released earlier this year, the 2023 YDI measures progress in 183 countries, including 50 of the 56 Commonwealth countries and covers six domains of youth development: 

  1. Education
  2. Employment and opportunity, 
  3. Equality and inclusion, 
  4. Health and wellbeing, 
  5. Peace and security, and 
  6. Political and civic participation

READ MORE: How Asian cities rank on the Smart City Index 2024

Lead image / MyHeart, shared on Talentcorp Malaysia FB

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