Throughout the 1990s, young people, as new labour market entrants, appear to have been carrying most of the de-regulation and 'activation' of European labour markets and welfare systems. This book provides an integrated analysis of two institutions that have become increasingly important in the early stages of young people's working life: activation programmes and temporary jobs. An introductory chapter sets the scene by providing a common theoretical framework for analyzing processes of labour market integration, marginalization and exclusion. It further reviews developments in European youth labour markets. It describes country and regime type differences in the conditions meeting young new labour market entrants. Four subsequent essays study the integrative potential of activation programmes and temporary jobs. The studies make use of two comparative survey data sources: The Youth Unemployment and Social Exclusion data and the European Social Survey data.