Disconnectedness among young adults can have several dimensions. From a socio-economic viewpoint, failure in school, unemployment and the lack of a partner are among the most important ones. In our sample of respondents to the SOEP Youth Questionnaire, approximately 13% of young people had been socio-economically disconnected at least once between the ages of 17 and 19. The percentage of disconnected young adults also rose from 2001 to 2008. We found evidence that an adverse family background is the most important variable affecting disconnection in young adulthood. Macroeconomic factors also contribute to socio-economic disconnection. Recessions are followed by increases in the share of disconnected young adults.
Pfeiffer, Friedhelm and Ruben Seiberlich (2011), Disconnected Young Adults in Germany: Initial Evidence, Schmollers Jahrbuch - Journal of Applied Social Science Studies 131 (2), 253-262.