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Research Article

Imagining the future through skills: TVET, gender and transitions towards decent employability for young women in Cameroon and Sierra Leone

Ross WignallRoss Wignall

Ross Wignall, Oxford Brookes University, is a Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology and Principal Investigator on the British Academy funded project Gen-Up. He has experience working in Sierra Leone and Gambia and specialises in issues around gender, youth and employment. rwignall@brookes.ac.uk

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Brigitte Piquardemail-imageBrigitte Piquard

Brigitte Piquard, Oxford Brookes University, is a Reader in Humanitarianism and Conflict and Co-Investigator on the British Academy funded project Gen-Up. She has extensive experience of working with young people in conflict zones and has worked in Colombia, Pakistan, Lebanon and Central African Republic.

email-image bpiquard@brookes.ac.uk

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Emily Joel§email-imageEmily Joel§§

Emily Joel, Oxford Brookes University, is studying for her Master’s in Social Anthropology and worked as a Research Assistant on the project.

email-image ejoel@brookes.ac.uk

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Marie-Thérèse Mengueemail-imageMarie-Thérèse Mengue

Marie-Thérèse Mengue, Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC), is Professor of Social Anthropology and has an extensive record of work in Cameroon on gender issues such as gender-based violence, HIV treatment and maternal health issues.

email-image mengue_mt@yaohoo.fr

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Yusuf Ibrahim**email-imageYusuf Ibrahim****

Yusuf Ibrahim, Njala University, is an experienced researcher who has worked at the World Bank and for the Sierra Leone government.

email-image yimohb@gmail.com

,
Robert Sam-Kpakra††email-imageRobert Sam-Kpakra††††

Robert Sam-Kpakra, World Bank, is an experienced researcher who has worked at the World Bank and for the Sierra Leone government.

email-image rskpakra@gmail.com

,
Ivan Hyannick Obah‡‡email-imageIvan Hyannick Obah‡‡‡‡

Ivan Hyannick Obah, Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC), is studying for her PhD in Social Anthropology and worked as a Research Assistant on the project.

email-image obahyvan@gmail.com

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Ernestine Ngono Ayissi§§email-imageErnestine Ngono Ayissi§§§§

Ernestine Ngono Ayissi, Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC), is studying for her PhD in Social Anthropology and worked as a Research Assistant on the project.

email-image nernestyna@yahoo.fr

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Nadine Negou¶¶email-imageNadine Negou¶¶¶¶

Nadine Negou is a Development Officer at our partner Don Bosco and worked as a Research Assistant on the project.

email-image ensembleate.nn@gmail.com

Abstract

This article presents findings from the Upskilling for Future Generations Project (Gen-Up), a participatory, collaborative project designed with and for young women in Cameroon and Sierra Leone to understand the links between technical and vocational education and training (TVET) and sustainable employment. The aim of the project is to provide a model of gender mentoring that can help communities to challenge gender stereotypes and to empower young women to build careers in male-dominated labour sectors. The article calls for a deeper, gender-just understanding of ‘skills’ necessary to fulfil the United Nations’ ‘decent work’ goals in the context of deepening urban inequality and gender discrimination. The article situates gender at the centre of future TVET policy, arguing that without a gender-just and gender-sensitive approach, skills programming will continue to have limited success in rebalancing patriarchal and discriminatory labour markets.

Keywords

TVETdecent workskillsgender disparitiesaspirationstransition to employmentCameroonSierra Leone
View the PDF for the full text of this article
Published on: 2 November 2023
Volume: 11
Issue: Supplementary issue 3
Article ID: 121
Pages:121 - 151
Copyright statement
© The author(s) 2023.
Cite this article
Wignall with Piquard, Joel, Mengue, Ibrahim, Sam-Kpakra, Hyannick Obah, Ayissi, Negou (2023), ' Imagining the future through skills: TVET, gender and transitions towards decent employability for young women in Cameroon and Sierra Leone ', Journal of the British Academy, 11(Supplementary issue 3): 121 https://doi.org/10.5871/jba/011s3.121

Thematic article

Normal View Dyslexic View

Imagining the future through skills: TVET, gender and transitions towards decent employability for young women in Cameroon and Sierra Leone

Ross WignallRoss Wignall

Ross Wignall, Oxford Brookes University, is a Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology and Principal Investigator on the British Academy funded project Gen-Up. He has experience working in Sierra Leone and Gambia and specialises in issues around gender, youth and employment. rwignall@brookes.ac.uk

,
Brigitte Piquardemail-imageBrigitte Piquard

Brigitte Piquard, Oxford Brookes University, is a Reader in Humanitarianism and Conflict and Co-Investigator on the British Academy funded project Gen-Up. She has extensive experience of working with young people in conflict zones and has worked in Colombia, Pakistan, Lebanon and Central African Republic.

email-image bpiquard@brookes.ac.uk

,
Emily Joel§email-imageEmily Joel§§

Emily Joel, Oxford Brookes University, is studying for her Master’s in Social Anthropology and worked as a Research Assistant on the project.

email-image ejoel@brookes.ac.uk

,
Marie-Thérèse Mengueemail-imageMarie-Thérèse Mengue

Marie-Thérèse Mengue, Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC), is Professor of Social Anthropology and has an extensive record of work in Cameroon on gender issues such as gender-based violence, HIV treatment and maternal health issues.

email-image mengue_mt@yaohoo.fr

,
Yusuf Ibrahim**email-imageYusuf Ibrahim****

Yusuf Ibrahim, Njala University, is an experienced researcher who has worked at the World Bank and for the Sierra Leone government.

email-image yimohb@gmail.com

,
Robert Sam-Kpakra††email-imageRobert Sam-Kpakra††††

Robert Sam-Kpakra, World Bank, is an experienced researcher who has worked at the World Bank and for the Sierra Leone government.

email-image rskpakra@gmail.com

,
Ivan Hyannick Obah‡‡email-imageIvan Hyannick Obah‡‡‡‡

Ivan Hyannick Obah, Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC), is studying for her PhD in Social Anthropology and worked as a Research Assistant on the project.

email-image obahyvan@gmail.com

,
Ernestine Ngono Ayissi§§email-imageErnestine Ngono Ayissi§§§§

Ernestine Ngono Ayissi, Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC), is studying for her PhD in Social Anthropology and worked as a Research Assistant on the project.

email-image nernestyna@yahoo.fr

,
Nadine Negou¶¶email-imageNadine Negou¶¶¶¶

Nadine Negou is a Development Officer at our partner Don Bosco and worked as a Research Assistant on the project.

email-image ensembleate.nn@gmail.com