Europe in the eyes of youth and young voters

Europe struggles to gain a place among the various issues that interest young people, yet many of our national policies are influenced by it in terms of orientation, economic consequences and benefits.

A group of young people spoke about it on 8 January during the debate “Youth in the Eyes of Youth and Young Voters” promoted by the Fondazione Toscana Sostenibile as part of the EU4YOUTH2ACT project and hosted by the Department of Education, Languages, Interculture, Literature and Psychology of the University of Florence, associate partner of the project. As emphasized by prof. Fernando Cioni and the director Prof. Vanna Boffo, the Department of Florence is a crossroads of culture, which, welcoming thousands of young people from Italy and abroad, lends itself well to the promotion of this debate on Europe and its founding values.

A collected but participatory debate which sowed grains of awareness with an eye to the next European Parliament elections and the preservation of democracy in the long term.

However, according to the interventions that emerged during the debate, Europe would not be a topic of interest, or at least not as much as national politics which in any case involves a good portion of the youth population and in particular university students. If on the one hand the word “Europe” is associated with the convenience of free movement of citizens and the use of a single currency, on the other hand this seems far from arousing clear feelings of belonging or a call to civic and political involvement. It is not perceived as a tangible, life-changing concept. Even among young working adults, the priorities are different, such as satisfying basic needs with a job and a salary adequate for the cost of living.
Themes that young people feel are more relevant and in which they would welcome European aid are the areas of youth employment, welfare and health.

The many issues raised and observations noted during the debate will now be analyzed and will flow into the needs analysis envisaged by the project, the aim of which is precisely to develop tools capable of stimulating young generations to actively engage in European issues: the processing of the material produced during this debate and in other similar initiatives taking place in the other partner countries of the project will form a first nucleus of resources intended for dissemination, such as those you can find below:


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Europe in the eyes of youth and young voters