The EMPOWER-YOUTH project analyses societal and citizen participation of disadvantaged young people and young adults in the Brussels Region. The main objective is to identify, from the perspective of young people (14-30 years old), the factors that stimulate or, on the contrary, hinder the use of structures that aim to develop their capacity for societal and civic participation. The project also seeks to identify and test existing devices that are effective in creating opportunities for citizen participation of disadvantaged youth, not only to explain the reasons for their success, but also to design possibilities for generalization.
Empower Youth is a 4 years research program (Nov. 2017- Oct. 2021) conducted By Géraldine André (IES-VUB) and Alejandra Alarcon (GERME-ULB) and funded by Innoviris on societal and civic participation of young disadvantaged Brusselers. Through a mixed method design (qualitative and quantitative), Empower Youth investigates:
1) Why and when do youngsters not take up on, or turn away from, structures that aim at developing their participation;
2) When and how does the institutional complexity of Brussels influence the relationships of young people from Brussels with those structures;
3) How does discrimination and assignment to disadvantaged social categories such as gender or alleged race (as well as their interactions) shape the relationships of youngsters with different institutions in Brussels;
4) In which ways do the existing instruments and programmes aiming at the encouragement of civic participation of young people from Brussels meet their expectations (or not);
5) What are the links between different forms of societal and civic participation?