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PROMoting youth Involvement and Social Engagement (PROMISE)


The objective of PROMISE is to explore young people’s role in

shaping society; past, present and future. Young people are often at the

forefront of social, cultural and political change, often driven by

their energy and creativity, but also by their frustration at the

challenges they face. PROMISE aims to investigate young people’s

responses to these challenges, and seeks ways to transform this into

positive social achievement. Through an understanding of the

experiences, values and attitudes of European youth PROMISE will get to

the heart of barriers and opportunities for social engagement.

PROMISE focuses specifically on young people ‘in conflict’ with

authority, and usually, therefore, in conflict with social norms. We

contend that these ‘conflicted youth’ are seen to be the most

problematic in terms of positive social engagement, often triggering

negative and punitive responses from authority, in turn furthering

marginalisation and stigmatisation. The negative effects of stigma and

marginalisation reduce opportunities for young people to engage

positively in social action, and as a result, much of the creativity,

innovation and energy within these groups is directed away from positive

social change. PROMISE believes that conflicted youth present

significant opportunities for change and should therefore be the prime

focus of policy makers and practitioners.

Using a mixed methods approach, this project gathers quantitative

data to explore differences in youth attitudes and behaviour across

Europe, as well as employing ethnographic and participatory research

methods to look more closely at youth engagement and innovation. As

such, PROMISE aims to engage young people across Europe providing a

space for them to set the agenda, document their situations and

articulate their needs.


2016-05-01 – 2019-04-30