Youth Participation. Good Practices in Different Forms of Regional and Local Democracy

Anu Gretschel, Tiina-Maria Levamo, Tomi Kiilakoski, Sofia Laine, Niina Mäntylä, Geoffrey Pleyers & Harri Raisio

The analysis in publication is based on using a five-fold frame for ways of promoting participation. The good practices presented in the paper are categorized within different fields of political action, including representative, direct, participatory, deliberative, and counter-democracy. The general argumentation of the paper states that in creating a participatory culture, the practices in all of these fields should be taken into account. The good practices are based on answers to a questionnaire which was open from 31st January to 18th of February 2013. Respondents from 22 countries answered the questionnaire. In addition to the questionnaire, some good practices are identified using existing research literature and authors ongoing research data on youth participation. The use of social media is presented in an individual chapter, as well as an overview of existing policy documents and the legal framework of youth participation. The paper advocates using a broad scope of democracy in policy planning, and it documents existing practices all over Europe. The good practices are analysed from the adult perspective and the actual impact of these practices on young people is not assessed. The recommendations offered in the beginning of the report are based on the analysis offered in the chapters.