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  3. From clicktivism to activism - Connecting stakeholders. Looking at trends of new participation. Developing practices.

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From clicktivism to activism - Connecting stakeholders. Looking at trends of new participation. Developing practices.


28 September - 4 October 2015 | Nicosia, Cyprus

This seminar will enhance participants’ understanding of new trends of political participation and civic engagement of young people and discuss their recognition and support by the institutions.
Context of the seminar We have been witnessing a growing interest from policy-makers, researchers and various youth work practitioners in the participation of young people in democratic life. This interest is prompted by a justified concern about low voter turnout, declining levels of civic engagement, low confidence in the institutions of representative democracy and other signs of skepticism, apathy and lack of trust in policy-makers. Young people have become increasingly disengaged from the traditional forms of political and civic participation, a phenomenon that might make us think that young people are simply not interested in democratic life. Nonetheless recent studies, such as one on the democratic participation of young people in Europe, carried out by the London School of Economics on behalf of the European Commission, informs us that there is no crisis of democratic participation and that young people cannot be considered to be disengaged or apathetic; they still participate in their own ways, according to their new interests and lifestyles. They are diverse and critical stakeholders in democracy. Young people seem to have understood that voting is not the only way of making their voices heard and institutions still need to understand and accept that voter turnout is not the only indicator of citizen participation. Young people choose unconventional, spontaneous and sometimes unexpected ways of participation, going beyond traditional institutions. A wider understanding of the notion of participation in democratic life of young people needs to be embraced by institutional actors in order to encompass the multiple existing forms, degrees and arenas of participation. A definition provided by the Council of Europe’s 2003 “Revised European Charter on the Participation of Young People in Local and Regional Life” helps us understand what participation, in its broad sense, is: “participation in the democratic life of any community is about more than voting or standing for election, although these are important elements. Participation and active citizenship is about having the right, the means, the space and the opportunity and where necessary the support to participate in and influence decisions and engaging in actions and activities so as to contribute to building a better society.” What this seminar is about What do we understand by “participation in democratic life”? What is the difference between traditional and alternative forms of participation? Are the alternative forms of participation enough or just preparation for institutional participation? What links exist between the alternative and traditional forms of participation? What type of participation is more valuable? What motivates young people to participate differently? Are all these forms of participation recognized and accepted by institutional actors? Can “Erasmus+: Youth in action” foster these forms of participation? How can youth work support young people in their preferred ways of participation? What are the skills that young people need to participate? What do institutional actors need to do to motivate young people to respond positively to their offers? All these questions will be the starting point of this seminar. Based on research and practice, this seminar will enhance participants’ understanding of new trends of political participation and civic engagement of young people and analyze their connection to traditional channels of participation, as well as discuss their recognition and support by the institutions and society at large. Objectives of the seminar o Expanding the understanding of participation by throwing the spotlight on innovative practices at local, national and European levels; o Raising awareness of the learning process and competencies required by institutions and young people in order to integrate new trends of participation; o Reflecting on the role of youth work and the “Erasmus+: Youth in action” programme in supporting young people’s diverse ways of participation; o Stimulating and reinforcing the co-operation and exchange of practices among participants having different professional backgrounds and experiences of participation. Working methods The seminar will be based on non-formal learning approaches encouraging the active involvement of participants, giving them space to take an active role, express themselves and share good examples of practice. The discussions will be informed by evidence-based research findings and policy documents. Field visits will be also included in the programme.

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Training overview


This activity has already happened!

This Seminar is

for 30 participants

from Austria, Belgium - FR, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Norway, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom

and recommended for

Youth workers, Trainers, Youth leaders, Youth project managers, Youth policy makers, Researchers, Activists, Public Institutions Representatives

Working language(s):



Cypriot Erasmus+ National Agency (National Agency)


  • SALTO-YOUTH Participation (SALTO Resource Centre)
  • Greek, UK, Italian, Swedish, Maltese and Hungarian “Erasmus+” National Agencies (National Agency)
  • Partnership between the European Commission and the Council of Europe in the field of youth (Youth NGO)

Contact for questions:

Raluca Diroescu


Phone: 0032(0) 2 227 52 82

Before applying please contact the NA of your residence country to check if it is involved in this concrete project and committed to cover travel costs. NB! Learn about possible participation fee and other relevant rules.


This project is financed by the Erasmus+: Youth in Action Programme. Being selected for this course, all costs (accommodation, travel, visa, etc.) relevant to participation in the course will be covered by the NAs involved in this project - except a participation fee which varies from call to call and country to country. Please contact your Erasmus+: Youth in Action NA to learn more about the financial details, and how to arrange the booking of your travel tickets and the reimbursement of your travel expenses.

Participants are entitled to receive a Youthpass certificate from the organiser, for recognition of their competence development during the activity. Read more about Youthpass:

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