In 2018 the unemployment rate in Indonesia reached 7 million people or around 5.34% of the total workforce (BPS, 2018). The current open unemployment rate for young people is 24.27%, of which 11.98% occurs in the age range of 19-24 years (Youth Statistics, 2018). Indonesia needs to create and provide wider opportunities for decent work for its people. Especially for young people whose potential has not been tapped due to limited access to productive and decent jobs.

The agricultural sector actually has the potential to reduce youth unemployment rates in rural areas. However, AKATIGA’s research[1] found that many young people are constrained to become farmers because they face several challenges. Some of them are the length of time waiting to be able to access land owned by parents, the high price of renting/buying land for farming, the price of agricultural products at the farm level which tends to fluctuate and even tends to be low so that farming profits are not as big as other sectors, and a lack of information on innovative agricultural practices.

The rural youth who are not connected to the agricultural sector tend to choose to migrate to urban areas. However, AKATIGA’s research (2017)[2] found that the experience of migrating young people is not only limited to success marked by economic improvement. Not a few have also experienced failure and there are indications of being trapped in an unsafe migration vortex. This experience of failure is due, in part, to limited information about jobs in other areas that young people aim for, such as job descriptions, salaries, etc.

Today’s rural youth are limited by their horizons of views on the range of jobs they can access. As previously explained, it is difficult for them to get involved in the agricultural sector because of various obstacles. On the other hand, working as a migrant worker also carries a high risk. In the midst of such a situation, the opportunity to access decent work is very important for rural youth so that they are not trapped as unemployed.

Young people need to be informed about job opportunities in various sectors, whether in agriculture, trade, manufacturing, finance, services, and others. They also need to have the opportunity to increase their capacity so they can take advantage of available job opportunities.

From the problems above, AKATIGA with support from KSI (Knowledge Sector Initiatives) conducted advocacy research to encourage the improvement of opportunities for young people who are just and inclusive in rural areas, both in the agricultural sector and other employment opportunities (non-agricultural).

[1] AKATIGA Research; Food Independence (2013), Technology and Agricultural Employment Opportunities in Rural Areas (2015), Becoming a Young Farmer (2017-2020), and Let’s be Young Farmers (2018-2020).

[2] AKATIGA’s study in collaboration with Plan International entitled “Migration Patterns of Young Groups in NTT (East Nusa Tenggara) in 2017.


In achieving the three main objectives above, AKATIGA has designed several approaches to be implemented throughout 2019-2021 consisting of:

  1. Conducting studies on employment opportunities in rural areas, both agricultural and non-agricultural.
  2. Advocacy for village treasury land allocation policies in Kebumen District.
  3. Trial of the village land allocation model and provision of information on employment opportunities in rural areas.


This program in the future aims to contribute to improving policies to increase the provision of decent work opportunities for young people who are just and inclusive in rural areas. The output of this program is:

  1. District Head of Kebumen regulation regarding village prosperity land allocation for young people and potential trials in selected locations.
  2. Formulation of a system model for providing information on non-agricultural employment opportunities in rural areas (through the approach of shelters, “hubs”, or other innovations) and the potential for trials in selected locations.
  3. In addition, this program is also expected to increase the change in the mindset of stakeholders in providing decent work opportunities for young people in rural areas so that they are more inclusive and sustainable.



This program is run with support from the Knowlegde Sector Initiative


This project was carried out in collaboration between AKATIGA and FORMASI