The new Global Youth Development Index report reveals the improved state of youth

The Commonwealth Secretariat and the Institute for Economics and Peace today released the 2023 Global Youth Development Index report.

Spanning 183 countries, the report, launched to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the modern Commonwealth, reveals progress and critical priorities for improving the well-being and empowerment of young people around the world.

The report's findings highlight significant developments across Commonwealth countries Singapore It maintains its leading position as the world's number one nation and is closely followed Malta, Cyprus, New ZealandAnd Brunei.

While delivering the statement, Commonwealth Secretary General Rt Hon Patricia Scotland KC said:

„YDI empowers stakeholders to address complex, multidimensional issues affecting young people. We must use this opportunity to pause and take stock; listen to what the numbers are telling us and consider the right course. We must be confident in our ability to make progress.”

„The best way to uplift our youth is to empower them, to let their passion and creativity guide our work with new ideas, inspiration and inspiration.”

Monitoring the progress of youth development in the Commonwealth is critical, especially as more than 60% of its population, totaling more than 2.5 billion people, is under the age of 30.

Key highlights of the report highlight impressive developments across Commonwealth countries:

Youth Civic and Political Participation: Commonwealth countries exhibit high scores on youth civic and political engagement compared to the global average.

Continuous Improvement: 94% of the 50 Commonwealth countries have shown improvement in their YDI scores over the past 12 years, indicating positive trends in youth development outcomes.

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Employment and Opportunity Advancement: The employment and opportunity domain showed the most significant improvement, driven by a 52% increase in youth financial inclusion metrics.

Global Ranking: Singapore topped the top 10 YDI scores globally, followed by Denmark, Portugal, Iceland, Slovenia, Norway, Ireland, Spain, Malta and Switzerland.

Over the past fifty years, the Secretariat has invested in youth policy development through initiatives such as the Commonwealth Youth Program (CYP).

Regional rankings for Commonwealth countries (by order)

Top 5 places in Commonwealth Africa

  • Mauritius
  • Seychelles
  • Ghana
  • Gabon
  • The Gambia

Top 5 places in Commonwealth Asia

  • Singapore (World's Greatest Country)
  • Brunei
  • Malaysia
  • Sri Lanka
  • Maldives

Top 5 in the Commonwealth Caribbean and the United States

  • Canada
  • Barbados
  • Grenada
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Jamaica

Top 3 places in Commonwealth Europe

  • Malta
  • Cyprus
  • United Kingdom

50 years of youth development

Marking the 75th anniversary of the modern Commonwealth and the 50th anniversary of the Commonwealth Youth Program (CYP), the YDI serves as a benchmark for member states to monitor progress towards meeting the recent Marlborough House Commitment to Youth Development and the SDGs.

Commonwealth Secretary General, Rt Hon Patricia Scotland KC, with Commonwealth Youth Leaders at the launch of the 2023 Global Youth Development Index Report.

Over the past 12 years (2010-2022), the global YDI score has increased by 2.8%. Notably, Sub-Saharan Africa experienced the most significant improvement with a rise of 3.81%. South America, South Asia, Asia-Pacific, Russia and Eurasia show significant improvement.

The employment and opportunity sector has seen significant growth globally, increasing by 6.1% from 2010 to 2022. The peace and security domain showed the smallest improvement, with a global score increase of just 0.22%.

Amid complex global challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change and regional conflicts, YDI serves as an important tool for policymakers, researchers, youth workers and advocates. It enables monitoring of progress, supports advocacy for change and encourages evidence-based policy making. Beyond assessment, YDI helps monitor the impacts of current crises, emphasizing the need for adaptive mechanisms to build meaningful progress and inclusive societies.

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For more insights on the 2023 Global Youth Development Index report and its implications for youth empowerment and policy advocacy, view the full report.

2023 Global Youth Development Index Report


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  • Igeoma oneator Communications Officer, Communications Division, Commonwealth Secretariat

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