Europe, Asia, and the Pacific

Europe’s new parties are rooted in “youth politics”

This article, written during the recent civil unrest in Greece, is universally relevant and addresses the emergence of new political parties that are not just dependent on youth, but are comprised of youth. It addresses the way in which youth politics, which are typically dismissed, are becoming increasingly powerful. As a growing number of young people become involved in the political systems, they begin to project their dissatisfaction of mainstream political ideas and at being ignored. It will be interesting to observe how powerful these parties will become in Europe as they use and encourage young voters to be the impetus for the new generation.

The Intergenerational Foundation. “Europe’s new parties are rooted in ‘youth politics.’ “ 20 November 2014. Web. 8 October 2015. <http://www.if.org.uk/archives/5789/europes-new-parties-are-rooted-in-youth-politics>.

 

European Youth: Participation in Democratic Life

Published by the European Commission in 2013, this source presents substantive evidence and data reflecting the participation of youth in politics in various European Union countries. In contrast to other articles in this section, this report shows specific evidence on the deteriorating interest of youth in politics and portrays the divided opinions of the importance of their voice in the community. The report details statistics of different opinions and categories such as voter turnout, as well as predictions for upcoming elections.

European Commission. “European Youth: Participation in Democratic Life.” Flash Eurobarometer 375. May 2013. Web. 15 October 2015. <http://ec.europa.eu/youth/library/reports/flash375_en.pdf>.

 

Political parties are neglecting young people – it’s time for unis to step in

Author James Sloam explains that young people, particularly European students, are not apathetic about politics, but feel disenfranchised and neglected by their political systems. If European governments consistently ignore young people, this will lead to lower voter turnout. This in turn creates a government that is not representative, ultimately producing a vicious cycle that leaves youth dissatisfied and feeling powerless. Sloam explains that colleges and universities can play an influential role in increasing the number of young voters and enable them to have their voice heard in the government.

Sloam, James. “Political parties are neglecting young people – it’s time for unis to step in.” The Guardian. 25 February 2015. Web. 8 October 2015. <http://www.theguardian.com/higher-education-network/2015/feb/25/political-parties-are-neglecting-young-people-its-time-for-unis-to-step-in>.

 

Regional Overview: The State of Youth in Asia and the Pacific

The United Nations published this fact sheet as part of its International Year of Youth in 2010-2011, an initiative that encouraged the increased understanding of the importance and benefits of youth participation globally. This report highlights the obstacles of education, employment, health, and participation in government that youth face, and reasserts the need to advance Asian communities as a whole with an emphasis on the younger generations. Focusing on employment and gender divided education, the report stresses the importance of involving youth in policy-making in order to promote progress, diversity, and properly represent the younger generations.

United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and the United Nations Programme on Youth. “Regional Overview: The State of Youth in Asia and the Pacific.” United Nations. 2012. Web. 15 October 2015. <http://social.un.org/youthyear/docs/ESCAPFinal5.pdf>.

 

Youth and Democratic Citizenship in East and South-East Asia, Pgs. 53-72

Youth’s influence on a community is often not realized until statistical data is presented. This report, published by the United Nations Development Program, offers excellent insight into the influence, both actual and perceived, that youth have had in East and South-East Asia. Some distinguishing factors of youth participation include gender, access to education, and frequency of Internet usage. The report allows us to compare their political involvement to the participation of adults throughout Asia and beyond, in order to take a comprehensive look at the state of youth in government as a whole.

United Nations Development Program. “Youth and Democratic Citizenship in East and South-East Asia.” United Nations. August 2014. Pgs. 53-72. Web. 15 October 2015. <http://www.asiapacific.undp.org/content/dam/rbap/docs/Research%20&%20Publications/ democratic_governance/RBAP-DG-2014-Youth-n-Democratic-Citizenship-East-n-SE-Asia.pdf>.

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