9th Conference European Sociological Association

RN30 Youth and Generation

2009-09-05 15:30:00 2009-09-05 17:00:00 Saturday, 5 September 15:30 - 17:00 Youth Civil Society Work Building II, B2.02

Artistic activity as a source for youth empowerment

Artistic activity as a source for youth empowerment
Integrating good practices to societal planning "Storm" is a Finnish national project, consisting of several local projects, where artistic activities are considered as a source for well-being and empowerment for especially marginalized young people. The project´s time span is 2008-2011 and it targets youths in ages from 13 to 17. Project is financed by Finnish Cultural Foundation.

Our task is to evaluate the effectiveness of these projects in a research program running concurrently with the art projects. In the first phase of the research, we are interested in the significances that the young are constructing from this cultural participation in to their everyday lives. Central questions are e.g. what kind of changes young people reflect regarding their social relationships, their social and cultural abilities, in addition to their attitudes for life, including arts´ and culture. We will ask also what their hopes are for the future. In the preliminary results we have examples of well functioning art processes with an ability to increase self awareness of young people and thus give them possibilities for empowerment in their local societies.

Further, our task is to define some good practices among art projects, and to develop futures processes for integrating these projects to societal planning. In this work we will use futures workshops. In them a group of people are working together creating a common vision and strategic tools for reaching their vision. The facilitator helps them to start from critique phase with current problems and to go forward to imagination phase for finding new and innovative solutions to these problems. At the end of the process, facilitator guides the group to define means for realization of the vision.

We will organize common futures workshops for local political actors, NGO's, artists, and especially for young people. In our presentation we will give preliminary results from these futures processes.