PARTISPACE analysed what participation means for young people in different social positions and life conditions. The findings suggest that an understanding of participation is needed that is broader and that recognises the diverse ways young people claim being a part of society. Conflicts are moments of participation in which claims for inclusion face mechanisms of exclusion.
This policy brief is concerned with the conflictual structure of participation and the participatory potential of conflict. It gives recommendations on dealing with social conflict in a way that recognises the needs and claims of young people involved and empowers and supports their participation. It is addressed primarily to policy makers at local level who are concerned with conflicts of young people in public space, to practitioners in educational contexts such as school and youth work, and also to the police as responsible for maintaining public order. However, findings and recommendations are also relevant for national and European policy makers concerned with youth participation.