Youth Dialogue: European Guidelines on the governance


Among the outcomes achieved by the European Council of the ministers of Education, held on 22-23 May 2019, there are the guidelines for the governance of EU Youth dialogue. These will involve youth organisations, decision makers, experts and researchers, that will contribute to the overall objectives of the EU Youth Strategy through:

  • encouraging the participation of young people in democratic life in Europe;
  • promoting equal participation of young women and men;
  • including diverse voices and ensuring that all young people are able to contribute to policy-shaping.

The goal

The main goal of the guidelines is to provide an orientation for such dialogue. The European Youth Strategy stated a certain flexibility for the member States in order to implement the key elements of the EUYD, in the framework of the following measures (see pt. 3 of the official document):

  • Building on experiences from the past;
  • Aiming at a clearer and leaner process
  • Preferably follow 18-months work-cycles;
  • One thematic priority per cycle;
  • Its Work Plan;
  • Flexibility with regard to the actors taking part in the governance and implementation of the EUYD;
  • Continuous follow-up to monitor quality outcomes and the impact of the whole process;
  • Recognition of the role of National Working Groups. They are the entities at Member State level, that are tasked with contributing to the organisation of consultations, promotion and impact of the dialogue with youth.

The roles

What is clear here is the main role of the member states, that are strongly driven to enable the participation of the young people to the dialogue. For this purpose, National Working groups are being created (see pt. 13 of the document), that are meant to collaborate closely with the Young Working Party at European level. The works would ideally last for cycles of 18 months each.

Great flexibility is given to the member states for this, keeping in mind the guidelines provided by the European Youth Strategy and the suggestions of the Trio Presidency (this resolution is going to take effect from July 2019, so the one starting from the next semester). The Trio plays a leading role for the implementation of the EUYD. It shall work in cooperation with the European Commission and European Youth Forum as for the European level, and with the National Agencies and civil society representatives, as for the national one.

A coordinating group will fill the gap between the two levels: the so-called European Steering group (ESG, see pt. 9 of the document). It will have the task of connecting the institutions and their bodies to the needs and demands of the people they represent, through the filter of the member states. It will be an additional guarantee of equality and representativeness, since it’s meant to have a special attention for the people with fewer opportunities and the ones that needs such dialogues most. The ESG will smooth the relation between the two realities, taking into account also contributions coming from relevant stakeholders, such as youth organisations and associations.


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