Squatting in Zagreb - One Example of Squatters Urban Struggle

Dino Vukušić (Institut društvenih istraživanja Ivo Pilar)

The objective of this presentation is to illustrate the squat within Medika, situated in Zagreb, capital of Croatia. Medika, a former pharmaceuticals factory, is nowadays a space of completely different purpose and sort. The “production” within these walls still goes on, but in no way is it factorial. This place provides location for manifestation of alternative – culture scene in Zagreb, and also has it´s “squatting” element. Our goal is to conclude what type of squatting we are dealing with in this case, based on the example of a typology of squatting. In one part of the presentation we shall lay out some of the theories related to the phenomenon of squatting. In the second part, on the other hand, we shall ethnographically describe the squatting in Medika by combining observation with the interviews that include squatters. The objective of this research was to observe both the internal and external aspects of the phenomenon by combining semi-structured interviews with the participants, and observation (with and without intervention). The total of six interviews was conducted with the participants we came across using snowball sampling or relying on earlier acquaintances with people from the scene. Presentation will also include collected visual material. This presentation is a product of wider research of Medika,, that took place in spring of 2016 and resulted with a master thesis.


Young People's Experiences About Their Access to Mental Health Support

Pia Nyman-Kurkiala & Sofia Smått-Nyman & Lillemor Östman & Margita Sundstedt & Susanna Hemming (Åbo Akademi University)

In Finland the mental health of young people has declined and mental health problems such as depression and anxiety are on the increase.  As a result of economic cuts vacant posts remain unfilled and one school psychologist serves an average of about 1,000 students in four different schools. The purpose of this study was to describe young people’s access to mental support, including teachers, school psychologists, ministers, therapists, friends and parents. Sixteen young people from 13 to 28 years were interviewed and the material was analyzed with a qualitative content analysis. The results show that mental support comes from different people such as friends and family; however, young people felt that seeking professional support and help was shameful and tabooed.


Youth as Influencers In Healthcare Organizations

Lillemor Östman & Yvonne Näsman & Pia Nyman-Kurkiala & Regina Santamäki-Fischer (Åbo Akademi University)

Aim: The aim of this study is to highlight how young people on an organizational level may influence the development of healthcare.

Background: Healthcare is often person-centered in that individuals are seen in relation to their surroundings. Participation and making people’s voices heard on different levels in organizations that produce service for citizens is therefore important. In committees citizens’ voices are represented by elected representatives, but young representatives are often missing.

Material and Method: Literature search. Inclusion criteria: articles on children and youths as decision-makers on a management level, peer reviewed and published. Exclusion criteria: non-scientific material, articles on self-determination in illness.

Results: Six studies could be identified that fulfilled the inclusion criteria. The results of the analysis show both risks and possibilities with involving youths.

Risks: Youths can be seen as a threat to prevailing power structures. Responsibility can become burdensome for the youths. The young person may feel like a trophy. The youths’ opinions are not taken into consideration in decisions.

Possibilities: Experienced as positive to hear a young person’s opinion and offers safety and direction in the planning of service for youths. Is empowering for young people – they thrive on participation and it feels meaningful to be consulted.

Discussion: The participation of youths has primarily been promoted by their participation in studies or youth councils, but their possibilities to influence through these are still somewhat limited. Organizations that produce services for young people seldom involve youths on a management level, even when dealing with the production of service for young people. Youths can provide valuable opinions about such issues as care on children’s or adult wards to create a person-centred healthcare service for young people.


Identity and Health Among Finland-Swedish Minority Youth

Jean d’Amour Banyanga & Sofia Smått-Nyman & Lillemor Östman & Jacob Kurkiala & Pia Nyman-Kurkiala (Åbo Akademi University)

Background: In youth many significant physiological and psychological changes take place. These identity developments are especially important for an individual’s well-being. Nowadays youths, especially in the developed nations, live in an individualized and globalized world which may increase their vulnerability. Recent studies reveal that young people’s mental health has declined which is highlighted through an increasing number of diagnoses of anxiety, trauma, and depression. Moreover, caring science research demonstrates that an individual’s health and well-being is influenced by the history and culture of which the human being is a part. Minority studies show that minorities are often more vulnerable and have poor health than the majority population or have “Double Jeopardy Hypothesis”. Yet, research indicates that among the Finland-Swedish minority in Finland the “Double Jeopardy Hypothesis” is reversed as members belonging to this minority generally experience better health than the majority population.

Aim: The aim of the present study is to describe how the health and well-being of minority youths is affected by their belonging to a minority culture. Method: Essays were written by ninth-graders in Finland-Swedish high schools on the topic, “Me, a Finland-Swedish youth”. They were analyzed by using a thematic analysis (Braun and Clarke, 2006). This current study is part of the larger research project, “Young and Finland-Swedish”.

Results: The results show that ninth-graders feel that the Finland-Swedish culture gives them a stable foundation in life that affects their identity, health and well-being in a positive way. The Finland-Swedish culture appears to be important for the youths’ sense of belonging and happiness as well as a sense of stability in a changing world. The results illustrate that a positive ethnic minority identity can be a protective factor when it comes to the well-being of young people.

Keywords: Youth, health, well-being, identity, minority, Finland-Swedish


Exploring the Civic Engagement of Finnish Adolescents

Jacob Kurkiala, Lillemor Östman, Patrik Söderberg, Mikael Nygård, Pia Nyman-Kurkiala (Åbo Akademi University)

A number of studies show that young people take an interest in society and politics but tend to choose other channels to express their opinions and influence society, than older people do. The aim of this study was to investigate the patterns of civic participation among youth as well as its determinants, by using unique survey data from the Youth survey in Ostrobothnia. The survey was conducted electronically. A total of 23 Finnish- and Swedish-speaking senior level schools in 14 municipalities in Ostrobothnia participated in the survey. For the present study, only 9th graders were included (N=1674, mean age = 15.0). The results show a higher level of engagement in relation to non-political activities whereas conventional and non-conventional political activities attract far less attention among youth. The results show a higher level of engagement in relation to non-political activities whereas conventional and non-conventional political activities attract far less attention among youth. The foremost explanations to civic engagement were to be found in gender as well as social and political resources, respectively.


Settling in Belgium. Unaccompanied Refugee Minors and how Experiences Before, During and After the Flight Impact Their Psychological Well-being

Malte Behrendt (Ghent University)

“Unaccompanied refugee minors” are children or youngsters who flee their home country without their parents or any adult legally responsible for them. Considering their young age and the absence of their primary caregiver they are especially vulnerable to adverse experiences at different stages of their migratory journey. Research has mainly focused on pre-departure traumatic experiences and post migration experiences such as daily stressors migrant children must cope with in the host society. However, little is known about the various experiences unaccompanied minors face while being on the move. In order to fill in this gap, the Childmove project aims at finding out about how the flight experiences of unaccompanied refugee minors affect their psychological well-being with regard to experiences in their country of origin, experiences they have during their journey, as well as experiences in the country of settlement. This study focusses on the experiences of minors arriving in Belgium. Using an integrative mixed-methods, cross-country and multi-sited approach, the minors’ experiences are documented. By implementing a longitudinal research design, we aim to investigate the minors’ psychological well-being through various stages of their trajectories. This method further helps us to create knowledge about how evolutions in the minors’ psychological well-being are mediated by different traumatic experiences and daily stressors. More specifically, this study investigates the psychological impact and role of housing, reception and care structures in Belgium. Special attention will be given the concept of daily stressors and how the measurement of these can be operationalized. Besides quantitative methods like self-report questionnaires, qualitative methods like in-depth interviews are applied in order to grasp all aspects of the minors’ complex situation.


Tidsskrift for Ungdomsforskning

Anders Bakken (OsloMet - Oslo Metropolitan University)

Tidsskrift for ungdomsforskning (Journal for Youth Research) was established in 2000 by the Department for Youth Research at Norwegian Social Research (NOVA), now part of Oslo Metropolitan University. NOVA is now in the process of relaunching Tidsskrift for ungdomsforskning as a Nordic, Scandinavian language journal published by an academic publishing house. The aim of the journal will be to support the development of academic discussions on youth and youth related issues across the Nordic countries. The journal will publish peer-reviewed articles reporting on research carried out in or with relevance for the Nordic context. The journal will have a multidisciplinary profile, covering sociology, anthropology, psychology and educational research.


The Domestic Violence Research Program

Lars Roar Frøyland (OsloMet - Oslo Metropolitan University)

The Domestic Violence Research Program is a five-year research program conducted by Norwegian Social Research (NOVA) at OsloMet – Oslo Metropolitan University. It is financed by The Ministry of Justice and Public Security and The Ministry of Education and Research and runs from 2014 to 2019, with a 3.5 million EUR budget. The program is organized in four streams: 1) developmental trends, vulnerability and protection, 2) cultural understandings and underlying causes, 3) measures and systems in public and private sector, and 4) negative social control and forced marriages. Data from two large-scale surveys on the prevalence of violence among children and youth are utilized to explore a range of issues, including risk factors and time trends, poly-victimization, resilience, perpetration, and links between victimization and self-harming behavior. A range of support services for victims have also been studied using qualitative methods, including the Barnahus model, crisis shelters, support centers for victims of sexual abuse, and multi-agency collaborations. The program also explores attrition and victim support in the criminal system in cases of family violence. Other key themes are victims’ interpretation of violence and rape, sexual relations with legal minors, and the boundaries of sexual violence. This research relates violence to cultural understandings of gender, intimacy, sexuality, agency etc. Finally, the project covers research on forced marriages and honor related violence in ethnic minority families, including support services, regulations, and policy frameworks.


Ungdata - Norwegian Youth Surveys

Silje Hartberg (OsloMet - Oslo Metropolitan University)

Ungdata is a cross-national data collection scheme, designed to conduct youth surveys at the municipal level in Norway. Ungdata is regarded as the most comprehensive source of information on adolescent health and well-being at the municipal and national levels. It is among other things used in municipal planning and developmental work related to public health and preventive measures aimed at young people. Ungdata cover various aspects of young people's lives, e.g. relationship with parents and friends, leisure activities, health issues, local environment, well-being, and school issues. The surveys also include questions about tobacco and drug use, and participation in various forms of antisocial behavior such as violence and bullying. NOVA, at OsloMet – Oslo Metropolitan University, is responsible for the national coordination of the project, while the regional Drug and Alcohol Competence Centers are responsible for conducting the municipal surveys. Norwegian Directorate of Health, Ministry of Children, Equality and Social Inclusion, Ministry of Justice and Public Security and Ministry of Education and Research has supported the development of Ungdata financially. From 2015, Ungdata is financed through the national budget. The Ungdata material is collected online during school hours. The questionnaire has a fixed part, which is similar in all surveys. In addition, the form contains a number of elective questions that municipalities can choose based on interest and need. NOVA administers a national database, which contains all conducted surveys.


Participation in Sports Among Norwegian Youth

Marlene Persson (NOVA OsloMet)

Organized sport is an important activity for many young people in Norway. Still, participation varies with age, social background, place of residence etc. The aim of the research project is to gain new knowledge about the social position and status of sport participation among young people in Norway. Based on the national youth survey Ungdata (N=510.000) and qualitative fieldwork studies we will examine factors promoting participation in youth sport. The research project is a collaboration between NOVA, OsloMet and the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences. A grant from the Ministry of Culture to “Ungdatasenteret”, will ensure a long-term commitment to the sport research based on results from Ungdata. The project is led by Anders Bakken at NOVA, OsloMet.


Inequality in Youth – A Qualitative, Longitudinal Research Database

Ingunn Eriksen (NOVA OsloMet)

How does inequality appear and develop during the years of adolescence in terms of education, health, leisure and risk? How do the individual trajectories unfold intertwined with social change, close relations and institutions?

Inequality in youth is a qualitative, longitudinal research database on youths in Norway, intended to work parallel to the quantitative Ungdata surveys. The database will consist of repeated interviews with 80 youths in four different communities in Norway, interviewed every other year from when they are 13 until they are 19 (2018-2024). We also wish to include interviews with their parents. Longitudinal Qualitative Research (LQR) is a powerful method that investigates lives through time. Following youths as they move from early adolescence to young adulthood, the Inequality in youth project intends to understand more about how adolescents experience central areas of their lives as they get older, as well as how biographical meaning reflects societal change. The method offers the possibility to understand how change is created, lived and experienced, as well as understanding youths’ agency. We will do this through a prospective tracking in real time, following the same individuals from a young age over a period of time through repeated interviews.


Negotiate - Overcoming Early Job-insecurity in Europe

Chirster Hyggen (NOVA OsloMet)

The poster presents Key findings and policy recommendations from the H2020 project NEGOTIATE - Overcoming early job-insecurity in Europe. NEGOTIATE is a research project centered on young people in Europe. It examines the long- and short-term consequences of experiencing job insecurity or labour market exclusion in the transition to adulthood. By actively involving national and European stakeholders, including young people themselves, the project will contribute to evidence-based and effective policies preventing the adverse effects of early job insecurity and youth unemployment. The project team has interviewed more than 200 young adults with experiences of unemployment and early job-insecurity. We implemented an employer centered experiment evaluating 20 000 fictive CV's from young applicants. In addition the team analyzed comparative and longitudinal secondary data-sources.   


City Capital - Young Urban Finn's Relations to the City Space

Tarja Tolonen & Sinikka Aapola-Kari & Jenni Lahtinen & Matilda Wrede-Jäntti (University of Helsinki  & Finnish Youth Research Network)

We present a new concept – city capital – to address young people’s different knowledges about various aspects of city life, and their skills related to making use of the possibilities which can be found in the city. We focus on the ways young people in urban areas formulate meanings of different spaces, and the social and material relations connected to them. We look at young people’s mobilities in their home-towns, how they utilize various public and private spaces, and also compare young people from different backgrounds. Our data was produced during participatory map-workshops organized with 74 ninth-graders from three different urban areas in Finland. The workshops were part of the qualitative longitudinal research project “Youth in time”, coordinated by the Finnish Youth Research Network. First a thematic analysis was made of the young people’s conversations in the map-workshops along with a visual analysis of the markings they made on the maps. Thereafter an intersectional analysis was done in order to visualize classed, gender and ethnic differences in young people’s use of the urban spaces. This underlined that young people possess different types of city capital; that is knowledge and skills how to use the city space for their own actions. City capital is a form of cultural capital (see Bourdieu 1997/1986), which is intertwined with young people’s social and economic capital, as well as with the material conditions of their home-towns. According to our findings, some young people have acquired a great amount of  city capital: they make extensive use of urban spaces and move skillfully around their home town to find suitable spaces for social interaction and leisure activities. This is the result of their accumulated social, cultural and material resources. However, certain groups of young people demonstrated significantly more limited mobilities and knowledges, and it seems that they needed support from youth work and/or education in order to be able to accumulate their city capital.  Also, controlling adults, racist and sexist harassment and fear of violence seemed to restrict young people’s mobility in the city.  


Change in the Meanings of the Ethnicity in Everyday Life of Finnish Prisons

Helena Huhta (Finnish Youth Research Network)

This PhD studies everyday life in Finnish prisons from the perspective of ethnicity. The study examines ethnicity in terms of how it manifests, what meanings it is given, and what consequences it has in the social reality of prisons. In less than four decades, the number of foreign-national prisoners has increased from a few individuals to one sixth of all prisoners. Yet, little knowledge exists about social life in the most “total” institute of Finnish society. I collected the data for the study in two closed male prisons during a nine-month period of ethnographic field work. The data comprises 44 prisoner- and 25 officer interviews, and field notes on 105 observation days. The study reveals that meanings of ethnicity in the prison context are in a process of change. Ethnic categories continue to direct social behavior and group formations, but the significance of the categories in prisoner hierarchies is diminishing. I demonstrate this change on three levels: 1) the spatial organization of social order, 2) the micro level of one residential ward, and 3) the evolving relationship between prisoners and officers. In terms of equality, the prisons seem to fall behind other societal institution; and this can only partly be explained by the inmate culture and relations. Despite the general positive direction, much is still to be done in Finnish prisons to ensure equality and respond to the special needs of ethnic minorities.


In Addition There Will be Posters from Different Finnish Youth Research Network's Projects on Display