Concept & Objectives
SummaryMYPLACE is a 7.9 Million Euro EC funded project, which explores how young people's social participation is shaped by the shadows (past, present and future) of totalitarianism and populism in Europe
Conceptually, it goes beyond the comparison of discrete national 'political cultures' or reified classifications of political heritage ('postcommunist'/'liberal democratic'); it is premised rather on the pan-European nature of a range of radical and populist political and philosophical traditions and the cyclical rather than novel nature of the popularity they currently enjoy.
Empirically, MYPLACE employs a combination of survey, interview and ethnographic research instruments to provide new, pan-European data that not only measure levels of participation but capture the meanings young people attach to it.
Analytically, through its specific focus on 'youth' and the historical and cultural contextualization of young people's social participation, MYPLACE replaces the routine, and often abstract, iteration of the reasons for young people’s ‘disengagement’ from politics with an empirically rich mapping of young people’s understandings of the civic and political space that they inhabit.
In policy terms, MYPLACE identifies the obstacles to, and facilitators of, young people's reclamation of the uropean political arena as 'my space'.
the specific objectives of MYPLACE are:
- To contextualise young people’s civic engagement in regional, national and European historical contexts
- To map and understand the process of the (re-)production, transmission and (re)interpretation of local, national and pan-European political heritage and experience
- To measure attitudes to, and participation, in political organisations, social movements and civic action programmes among young people in Europe and to understand how these attitudes and engagements are differentiated along lines of gender, ethnicity, class and region
- To measure views on legitimate forms of political representation and action within the context of different democratic heritages
- To map the range of youth activism across Europe and the ways in which young activists are networked inter-regionally and trans-nationally
- To understand the appeal of radical, extreme or populist movements to young people and its relationship to regional, national and European political heritage.
- To inform and assist policy and practitioner agencies to chart and evaluate the political responses to populism in the youth related policies of political parties and within young people's own activism