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HomeInformationTwo out of three young Europeans intend to vote
Attitudes towards European elections

Two out of three young Europeans intend to vote


Young people´s intention to vote is 75% or above in Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden, Italy, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta and 55% or lower in Cyprus, Greece, Estonia, Czech Republic and Slovenia. 

Young people are less inclined to vote than their parents and show a growing dissatisfaction with the way politics works. Yet, young people want to participate and ask for more opportunities to have a say on politics. Young people show a strong European identity and a higher appreciation of European integration than other age groups.

The survey shows also that among those who intend to vote around one third (28%) is certain that they will do so, whereas 11% say they will definitely not vote. Among those who are likely to vote, nine in ten would do so because they believe that democracy, Europe and the European elections are important. Among those who are not likely to vote two out of three believe that their vote will not change anything.

The survey was done in April 2013 among 13 000 young people aged 15 to 30 in the 27 EU Member States and 500 young people in Croatia. The objective was to study young peoples´ attitudes towards participation in society and in the European elections in 2014.

There is a growing dissatisfaction among young people with the way politics work according to the Commission study realised by the London School of Economics on "Youth participation in Democratic life". Young people want to participate in politics by being listened to and involved in different ways. Internet and new technologies are seen as means for improved participation. Young people also request more information about politics and elections and consider specific institutional settings that could improve their participation and representation. Grassroots and community-based youth organisations are successful in motivating young people to get involved.

Young people consider themselves more than any other age group as citizens of the European Union, according to the Commission report on "EU citizenship and political participation amongst young people". 69% of the young respondents (against approximately 60% from the older age group) believe that being part of the European Union is part of their citizenship. Only 30% of young Europeans state that they feel exclusively citizens of their country (against approximately 38% from the older age group).

Of interest