PSA launches 'Beyond the Youth Citizenship Commission' volume
As part of its on-going commitment to promoting political activism and democratic engagement, the Political Studies Association is pleased to announce the publication of a new volume, Beyond the Youth Citizenship Commission: Young People and Politics. The publication is edited by Professor Jon Tonge (University of Liverpool) and Dr Andy Mycock (University of Huddersfield), who between 2008 and 2009 served on the independent Youth Citizenship Commission formed by the last Labour government. It builds on the work of the Youth Citizenship Commission and seeks to further energise debates about young people and democratic participation.
The volume brings together leading youth citizenship specialists from the Political Studies Association who provide ten short opinion pieces on a range of youth citizenship topics and offer policy proposals to encourage governments, political parties and youth stakeholder groups across the UK to adopt more dynamic approaches to encouraging young people to get involved in politics.
The volume addresses issues such as votes at 16, political participation of young women and BME groups, citizenship education in schools and universities, youth social media, and compulsory youth voting. It offers a range of policy proposals including:
- A national referendum on votes at 16
- The introduction of compulsory electoral registration in schools and colleges
- The youth-centric reform of political party membership
- A call for an all-party parliamentary commission on young women and politics
- Compulsory annual MP constituency and local councillor ward surgeries and political party policy forums for young people in schools, colleges, and community centres.
Professor Jon Tonge said that it was time for politicians to adopt more radical approaches to encourage young people to engage and participate in politics:
‘Our volume offers ten policies that are research-led and have clear potential to encourage more young people to get involved in politics’, he noted, ‘we urge political parties, youth organisations and young people to debate them and join the PSA in developing new youth citizenship initiatives’.
The volume will be officially launched at an event in Westminster during the summer and further events involving parliamentarians, youth organisations, and young people will be hosted in Edinburgh, Belfast and Cardiff. A series of on-line debates will be hosted over the next few weeks on the Democratic Audit and PSA blogs, with leading politicians, academics, and young people responding to the policy proposals.
An electronic copy of the Beyond the Youth Citizenship Commission: Young People and Politics volume can be downloaded here.
For further details of PSA youth citizenship events linked to the project or to ask for a hard copy of the volume, please contact Dr Andy Mycock