Youth’s Participation in Society

Through the project Youth’s Participation in Society, Wexfo aims to increase young people’s participation in democracy through the sharing of knowledge about the challenges and successful measures that can be taken. We want to inspire to start new projects and share best practices, and help to ensure that action is taken.

With Østlandsforskning, we have signed a contract for a report on what is known about young people’s participation in democracy, in Norway and in other countries, and what measures have been implemented or are planned to improve participation.

We are currently doing pilot projects under the auspices of Pegasus and the Norwegian festival of Litterature in the secondary schools in the Lillehammer area, and hope to expand to Oslo in the fall. Our pilots are developed in collaboration with Nansen Center for Peace and Dialouge and the Dembra project. We will also cooperate with Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences and the Nansen School on pilot projects with their students, and there may be more partners during the year. Experience from the pilots run in the spring and the knowledge obtained through the work on the global information report, will be summarized and discussed before the second round of pilot studies in September/October.

In the pilot studies, we will ask young people themselves what they think about the challenges and measures to be taken to ensure that youth will participate in the democratic processes and discussions. We will use the description of the challenges and proposed measures that came in the report from the Youth Free Speech Council last year. Our goals are to learn more about the status quo, and to improve the prerequisites for dialogue in the classrom. The project will cooperate closely with youth organisations and those working on similar projects, there will also be summits with youths involved.

The pre-project report will summarize the global information and the experience from the pilot studies and will make recommendations for one or more projects from 2023, probably for the period 2023-2025. We aim to propose that one of the projects will be to scale this up to a national project. The next step, which is also planned from 2023, is to do this globally too. WEXFO is investigating the possibility of bringing about regional pilots elsewhere in the world.

The ambition is to contribute to increased participation in society among young people by addressing the challenges and describing measures that work. The first presentation of the project will take place at the Congress in May.

Youth’s Participation in Society is funded by Sparebankstiftelsen DNB.