Date: Aug 12, 2023

With over 600 million Indians between 18 and 35 years of age, India is home to the largest number of millennials and GenZ-ers in the world. This makes the country a formidable reservoir of talent and human capital. By 2030, India will have a working-age population of 1.04 billion, powering the country’s economic growth, and in the decade ahead, young Indians are expected to make up 24 percent of the global workforce. Equipping them to shape the future of work is critical.

2030 is also the year by which nations are expected to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As societies confront global challenges including poverty, unemployment, gender inequality, conflicts, migration and climate change, it is imperative that youth are recognized and engaged as key actors in the development process. Enabling greater youth participation in policymaking processes and the crafting of governance solutions remains pivotal for catalysing transformational growth.

The UN points out that the engagement of youth as critical thinkers, innovators, communicators, change-makers, and leaders will be integral to the realisation of the SDGs. While youth involvement must be mainstreamed across each of the 17 SDGs, there are some where the mobilization of youth may be seen as a particular priority, and where their strategic actions could begin to effect a change in the short to medium term. These include: ‘No Poverty’ (Goal 1), ‘Good Health and Well-Being’ (Goal 3), ‘Quality Education’ (Goal 4), ‘Gender Equality’ (Goal 5), ‘Decent Work and Economic Growth’ (Goal 8), and ‘Climate Action’ (Goal 13), among others.

In this context, Observer Research Foundation (ORF), Kolkata is hosting a youth engagement workshop on the occasion of International Youth Day 2023 (Saturday, 12 August). The workshop will bring together youth1 from premier local colleges and universities, and explore their vision and aspirations for building a more progressive and sustainable India. It will also encourage young Indians to share their ideas about the concrete steps they could take to address certain SDGs, and to work towards drafting a Millennial Manifesto that captures these ideas. A programme for the workshop is given below.


10.30 - 10.35 AM SETTING THE SCENE
  • Pratnashree Basu, Associate Fellow, Observer Research Foundation (ORF), Kolkata
  • Six presentations by students of higher education institutions
  • Ambar Kumar Ghosh, Junior Fellow, ORF
11.30 - 12:00 AM Coffee break
12.00 - 01.25 PM GROUP ACTIVITY: TOWARDS A MILLENNIAL MANIFESTO Participants will be divided into groups and asked to develop concrete ideas about measures Indian youth could take to address key Sustainable Development Goals. Their ideas and recommendations will subsequently be published as a Millennial Manifesto and promoted extensively across ORF’s online platforms.
  • Group breakout sessions (1 hour)
  • Presentation of ideas and recommendations by group leads (25 mins)
  • Anirban Sarma, Senior Fellow, ORF Kolkata
01.30 – 02.30 PM Lunch

Venue Address