The overarching objective of YouCount is to generate new knowledge and innovations to increase the social inclusion of youth at risk of exclusion across Europe through co-creative youth citizen social science (Y-CSS). Overall, YouCount targets two strands of inquiry: 1) knowledge about social inclusion and how to create social change through the involvement of young citizen scientists and 2) contributing to the scientific knowledge base for Y-CSS for increased scaling.
YouCount's main specific objectives are to:
1. Support citizen science and the social sciences by developing a conceptual and methodological framework for youth-focused citizen social science(CSS) together with a multilevel stakeholder platform.
2. Provide open data concerning the experiences with implementation of hands-on citizen social science activities through a multiple case study of Y-CSS projects in nine countries across Europe to develop new knowledge of social inclusion for social innovation and policy-making.
3. Develop new social science knowledge of social inclusion, including identifying the major drivers for the social inclusion of youths and new/better social innovations/policy-making to cocreate positive social change and creating a theoretical model for increased social inclusion of youths on the individual and community/societal level.
4. Provide evidence of the costs and benefits of Y-CSS based on open data of the scientific, social, democratic, economic and individual outcomes of Y-CSS from the multiple case study and a multicriteria framework for assessments of the impact of the project.
YouCount focuses on social inclusion, which is understood as equal opportunities for youth participation in society and will elucidate three main domains of social inclusion: 1) social participation (e.g., work, education and social life); 2) connectedness and social belonging; and 3) citizenship and rights. Through multiple case studies – consisting of nine co-creative Y-CSS projects across Europe - the project will provide increased knowledge of the positive drivers for social inclusion in general and specific knowledge and innovation in relation to participation, belonging and citizenship.
While the project focuses on youths in general it also addresses the circumstances of youths who are most at risk of marginalisation in terms of poverty, migration, disability, low education, unemployment and disenfranchisement; some cases include young people from deprived or disadvantaged areas. Thus, the project involves a broad range of young people from local areas to avoid stigmatising particular groups by labelling them as ‘disadvantaged youths’ while stimulating social networking across groups of young people. In doing so, the project acknowledges that young people are a diverse group of citizens, and many possess important resources for local innovation and development.
The co-creative Y- CSS projects will focus on identifying positive drivers to increase social inclusion of youth with disadvantages and conduct systematic evaluations of the actual outcomes of Y- CSS through a mixed-methods design including pre-and post-measurements and processual data. The evaluation will also include an analysis of the mechanisms influencing social inclusion and the outcomes of CSS, and consider how the beneficial outcomes can be strengthened through maximising impact and recommendations for future research and innovation. The empirical research in the case studies will feed into the broader evaluation assessments of the costs and benefits of CSS. A framework for Y-CSS and research design will be advanced throughout the whole research process, as part of the co-creative design.
YouCountHow to participate:
If you wish to participate please add your Organisation to YouCount's Community of Interest, which can be found on our website: https://www.youcountproject.eu/community-of-interest
Or contact our project coordinator by filling the following form: https://www.youcountproject.eu/contact
You can also engage with us through our social media accounts: