The problem of access to employment is a major issue in contemporary Morocco. This suffers from remarkably high unemployment and inactivity rates (9.8% and 53.8% respectively in 2018), which particularly affect certain categories such as women and young people, urban rather than rural people, and more graduates than unqualified people.
The economic dimensions of this phenomenon – in particular the mismatches between supply and demand, linked to demographic growth and the increase in the number of graduates – have given rise to studies that have led to better understand some of these aspects and helped to draw up ways to promote access to employment.
The SOCMAROC project proposes to supplement these studies by exploring the social dimensions of this market. More specifically, it proposes to study the ways in which sociability ties can affect, positively or negatively, access to employment, both formal and informal, beyond the weight of strictly economic variables.
To answer these questions, the project uses social network analysis, which is a tool that has been particularly well assessed in the context of OCDE countries. Its use for this purpose in the Moroccan case, however, calls for adjustments related to certain specificities of the Moroccan labor market – in particular the place of the informal sector – and forms of sociability observable in the population.
Data collection and analysis
The project jointly collects and crosses two large sets of data:
These data are collected from a questionnaire. The latter aims to assess the mutual aid relationships within the Moroccan population, based on an assessment of the morphology of the ego-networks of individuals, as envisaged from their solidarity relationships. In other words, the questionnaire aims to assess the propensity of individuals to access various resources through their interpersonal relationships, and in particular, to a job. The morphology of the ego-network can be linked in the analysis to a set of questions on the social position of the individual, and on their relationship to employment and work.
These two sets of questions have been asked (though differently) in other contexts (notably in France, or in the United States), but never articulated to each other, and have not been asked in the context from a middle-income country.
This questionnaire will make it possible, on a more general level, to better understand the resources and strategies of households – and within households – vis-à-vis remunerated activities.
To build this questionnaire based on hypotheses adapted to the Moroccan field, the project is based on a hundred exploratory interviews.
The survey is conducted in two main areas: the Rahmna region and the city of Rabat. These two spaces provide sufficiently contrasting contexts to shed fruitful light on the dynamics of the labor market in Morocco.