by Beth Dennis
On the 20th of November, the International Youth Think Tank gathered in Barcelona for their 5th International Youth Conference, themed “A Path for Democracy: From engagement to impact.” With 23 participants from 12 different countries, the conference aimed to empower communities, influence policymakers, and foster democratic governance, emphasizing the need for meaningful representation of young voices.
Youth-Driven Proposals: Shaping a More Inclusive Democratic Landscape
Despite half of the world’s population being under 30, the median age of national leaders is currently 62, resulting in a lack of equitable treatment and meaningful representation for the youth. During the four-day event, participants engaged in open dialogues on democracy, collaborated with guest speakers from across Europe, and formulated twelve youth-led proposals addressing foundational aspects of democracy, sustainable youth involvement, technology’s role in shaping public opinions, democratic community participation, and strategies to overcome political barriers.
Bright Ideas for the Future: Unveiling Youth-Proposed Solutions
The concluding day featured a live event titled “Bright Ideas for the Future,” during which four young individuals presented the proposals and fielded questions from experts, including education panelists. These proposals, now integral to the “Handbook for Innovative Democracy,” aim to be a catalyst for positive change, specifically targeting the underrepresentation of young people and minority groups in decision-making processes.
Uniting for Inclusive Democracy: A Call to Action
Integrated into the comprehensive handbook, these proposals aspire to shape a more robust democratic society, encouraging active citizenry, fostering innovative ideas, and facilitating inclusive participation. They represent the initial steps toward building a more inclusive and peaceful democracy, and everyone is invited to join in this transformative endeavor.