Research Library

Research Library image of kids

"Lost Decade" for Young People and Young Families with Children

Release Date: September 29, 2011
File Format: pdf

These briefs by Northeastern University economics professor Andy Sum highlight the toll unemployment and poverty have taken on young people and young families with children in the past decade, and the long-term effects this economic crisis will have on America's future workforce and its economic prosperity. Young families with children have been hit the hardest in what has been called "The Lost Decade" with close to two out of three families living in poverty. Deteriorating earnings for young adults since 1979 have affected their ability to form independent households, reduced marriage rates and increased the share of college graduates living at home. Nearly two million jobs have disappeared from the economy and rampant unemployment, hidden unemployment and mal-employment have affected the earnings of all young workers. This emerging national crisis has long-term social and economic consequences for the nation.

View the policy briefs below:

Read other reports by Andrew Sum:

About the Author

Andrew Sum, Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University in Boston

Andrew M. Sum is a professor of economics and the director of the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University in Boston. He has produced research on the labor market and workforce development on the local, state and national level for the past 40 years focusing on the experiences of teens, young adults, blue collar workers and older workers. His most recent research has focused on what he calls "The Lost Decade," and how the last ten years, including "The Great Recession," has seriously harmed young workers and young families with children.