You are here

Census 2016 finds youth make up third of population

Thursday, April 6, 2017 - 11:30
  • Ireland’s large youth population unique in Western Europe
  • Drop in 20-34 year old population shows impact of emigration
  • Onus on Government to ensure adequate investment to meet needs of youth population, says Youth Council

The National Youth Council of Ireland (NYCI) – which represents groups working with over 380,000 young people - has today highlighted the results of Census 2016 and confirmation of our large youth population and called on Government to make sure planning and policy takes the needs of a third of the population into account.

New Census figures released today (06.04.17) by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show the number of children and young people under 25 years of age has grown to 1,583,004 which represents 33.2% of the total population. Just last month other CSO data confirmed that Ireland has the largest proportion of young people aged 0-14 in the EU.*

Census 2016 figures also show that the 20-34 year old age group was among just two which recorded a decline, demonstrating the impact of emigration.

Commenting on the figures James Doorley, NYCI deputy director said: “The primary use of census data is to assist Government in developing policy and inform decisions and actions. The fact that a third of our population is under 25 years puts an onus on Government to ensure adequate resources and investment are provided in areas such as education, health, housing, transport, and youth work services to meet the needs of this large youth population.


Growing youth population – unique in Western Europe

“Ireland is unique in Western Europe to have such a large youth population, it’s a wonderful asset for our society and country, but to maximise the social and economic benefits we must support young people and invest in the services they and their families and communities require,” concluded Mr Doorley




CONTACT: Daniel Meister, Communications Manager at NYCI on 087 781 4903,



National Youth Council of Ireland

NYCI is a membership-led umbrella organisation that represents and supports the interests voluntary youth organisations and uses its collective experience to act on issues that impact on young people.