IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

‘From School to Adulthood’? Young People's Pathways Through Schooling in Urban Ethiopia


  • Laura Camfield

    () (University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK.)


This article presents a case study of a rapidly evolving urban community in Southern Ethiopia drawing on survey and qualitative data from Young Lives, a long-term international study of two cohorts of children growing up in poverty (born 1994–1995 and 2000–2001). It uses this to set visible changes in aspirations and experiences of schooling over time in their political and economic context. The article illustrates the value of mixed-methods approaches within international development research by juxtaposing individual and household level data, both survey and qualitative, with data collected through school- and community-based research. This enables analysis of processes of power and social change taking place in contemporary Ethiopia and reflected in changing attitudes towards education and employment. Finally, the chapter highlights the challenges for the Ethiopian education system in meeting children's aspirations, in the context of rapidly declining economic opportunities after leaving school.Cet article présente une étude de cas d’une communauté urbaine en Éthiopie du sud caractérisée par un changement rapide et constant. Cette étude s’appuie sur des données qualitatives et d’enquête tirées de ‘Young Lives’, une étude internationale de long terme menées auprès de deux cohortes d’enfants grandissant dans des conditions de pauvreté (et nés en 1994–95 et en 2000–01). Sur la base de ces données, ce travail situe dans leur contexte économique et politique l’évolution des aspirations et des vécus scolaires des enquêtés. L’article illustre ainsi la valeur des méthodes mixtes pour la recherche sur le développement, juxtaposant des données de ménages et d’individus à la fois qualitatives et d’enquête avec des données tirées de recherches sur les communautés et le systéme scolaire. Ceci permet une analyse des processus de changements sociaux et de pouvoir se produisant dans l’Éthiopie contemporaine, et qui se reflètent en particulier dans l’évolution de comportements vis-à-vis de l'éducation et de l’emploi. Enfin, ce travail met en évidence les défis auxquels le système éducatif éthiopien est confronté pour satisfaire aux aspirations des enfants, et ceci dans un contexte plus large d’une diminution rapide des opportunités économiques pour les jeunes quittant l’école.

Suggested Citation

  • Laura Camfield, 2011. "‘From School to Adulthood’? Young People's Pathways Through Schooling in Urban Ethiopia," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan;European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI), vol. 23(5), pages 679-694, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:eurjdr:v:23:y:2011:i:5:p:679-694

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: Link to full text PDF
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    File URL:
    File Function: Link to full text HTML
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Gabriela Guerrero & Juan Leon & Kirrily Pells & Martin Woodhead, 2014. "Changing Children’s Lives Risks and Opportunities (Cambiando la vida de los niños)," Documentos de Trabajo (Niños del Milenio-GRADE) ninosmcambiandolavida, Niños del Milenio (Young Lives).
    2. repec:pal:eurjdr:v:29:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1057_ejdr.2016.7 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pal:eurjdr:v:23:y:2011:i:5:p:679-694. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.