Level of education

47.5 % of people between 30 and 34 have a higher education diploma

Work & training
Tertiary educational attainment

The goal of the EU2020 strategy that 47 % of people aged between 30 and 34 have a higher education diploma is in Belgium in 2018 achieved. This is now the case for 47.5 % of them. This percentage was still 45.9 % in 2017.

Belgium is well above the European average, which stood at 39.9 % in 2017.

Women perform much better than men in this area. In Belgium, 54.4 % of women aged between 30 and 34 have a higher education diploma, compared to 40.6 % of men of the same age group.

Among the total population aged 15 and over, 32.7 % have a higher education diploma.

Level of education
Higher education
Content

Share of people aged 30-34 having completed higher education

Belgium 2000 2005 2010 2015 2016 2017 (a) 2018
Total 35,2% 39,2% 44,4% 42,7% 45,6% 45,9% 47,5%
Men 33,3% 35,1% 39,0% 36,7% 40,4% 40,8% 40,6%
Women 37,2% 43,5% 50,0% 48,7% 50,7% 50,9% 54,4%
Brussels-Capital Region 2000 2005 2010 2015 2016 2017 (a) 2018
Total 43,9% 49,8% 48,7% 48,4% 51,9% 54,4% 56,2%
Men 41,2% 49,1% 48,0% 47,1% 49,8% 55,9% 54,6%
Women 46,8% 50,6% 49,4% 49,7% 54,0% 52,9% 57,7%
Flemish Region 2000 2005 2010 2015 2016 2017 (a) 2018
Total 36,4% 40,0% 45,0% 43,2% 47,3% 46,4% 48,2%
Men 34,9% 35,5% 38,6% 36,0% 40,6% 39,7% 39,4%
Women 38,0% 44,6% 51,4% 50,4% 54,0% 53,2% 56,9%
Walloon Region 2000 2005 2010 2015 2016 2017 (a) 2018
Total 30,0% 33,9% 41,5% 39,1% 39,6% 40,9% 42,5%
Men 27,6% 28,9% 35,6% 33,2% 35,9% 36,2% 36,4%
Women 32,5% 38,9% 47,5% 45,0% 43,2% 45,7% 48,6%
(a) Break in the results following a considerable reform of the Labour Force Survey.

Definitions regarding employment and unemployment

The Labour Force Survey is a sample survey among private households, held throughout the year. It is based on the replies of almost 123,000 persons (respondents) of working age (15 and older).

The survey is harmonised at European level. The definitions regarding employment and unemployment that are mentioned are those of the International Labour Office (ILO) to allow international comparison.

  • The employed comprise all persons who during the reference period performed some work for wage or salary, in cash or in kind, or who were temporarily not at work during the reference period and had a formal attachment to their job. This also includes family workers.
  • The unemployed comprise all persons who:

(a) during the reference period were without work, i.e. were not in paid employment or self-employment;

(b) were available for work, i.e. were available for paid employment or self-employment within two weeks after the reference period;

(c) were seeking work, i.e. had taken specific steps during the last four weeks including the reference week to seek paid employment or self-employment, or who had found a job to start later, i.e. within a period of at most three months from the end of the reference week.

Please note: The ILO unemployment figures are unrelated to any possible registration with the VDAB, Actiris, FOREM or the ADG, or to the receipt of unemployment benefits from ONEM (National Employment Office). As a result, they cannot be compared with administrative unemployment figures.

  • The labour force is made up of the employed and the unemployed.
  • The economically inactive population comprises all persons who were not considered employed or unemployed.
  • The employment rate represents employed persons as a percentage of the same age population. 
  • The employment rate as part of the Europe 2020 Strategy represents the share of persons employed in the population aged 20 to 64. 
  • The unemployment rate represents the share of unemployed people in the labour force (employed + unemployed) within a given age group.
  • The economic activity rate represents the share of the labour force (employed + unemployed) in the total population within a given age group.

The above indicators (employment rate, unemployment rate and economic activity rate) are the most important indicators for international comparisons of the labour market evolution.

Forms

Methodology

LFS : Methodological improvements of the Labour Force Survey (LFS) 2017 (PDF, 97 Kb)