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The European Union Youth Dialogue (EU Youth Dialogue) is the biggest structured citizen participation process in the European Union, in which a series of youth consultations on a mutually agreed and youth-relevant topic take place simultaneously across all of the EU member states. 

The EU Youth Dialogue happens in 18-month cycles and is coordinated by youth-led national working groups in EU member states and a European Steering Group at the EU level. Consultations are coordinated by national working groups, which are led by youth organisations and usually involve government institutions responsible for youth affairs, youth researchers and the national agencies of the Erasmus+ programme.

Twice a year, the current EU presidency country hosts an EU Youth Conference where youth representatives and decision-makers from EU member and candidate countries meet to engage in dialogue and discuss the results of national consultations. 

Each 18-month youth dialogue cycle usually ends with the results of the national consultations and EU Youth Conferences being compiled and presented to ministers at the Council of European Union, who consider them and adopt a policy or document based on the results. An example of one of the recent outcomes of the EU Youth Dialogue process was the adoption of the 11 European Youth Goals.

Authors

Martti Martinson
Martti Martinson

Martti Martinson is an Honorary Fellow at Victoria University, Australia and his research and advocacy work is focused on the enabling environment for youth participation in decision-making processes. He is a strong advocate for the concept of human rights based youth work and legislating youth participation.