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Table of contents: PLA 64 Young citizens: youth and participatory governance in Africa

Guest edited by Rosemary McGee, Jessica Greenhalf

Journal article

All over the world citizens are starting to demand accountability from those in power. We are seeing exciting experiments in participatory governance. But are they working for young people? What spaces are most promising for the participation of children and young people in governance?

Across Africa youth (particularly boys and young men) are often seen as a frustrated and excluded ‘lost generation’ who are marginalised from decision-making processes. But contributors to this special issue demonstrate how this is changing.

This special issue highlights the persistence, passion and enthusiasm that young people bring to governance processes – and how they are driving change in creative and unexpected ways.

Young people in Africa are challenging the norms and structures that exclude them. They are engaging with the state and demanding accountability. Young people are starting to exercise their right to participate – and developing the knowledge, skills and confidence to affect to change.

This special issue of Participatory Learning and Action, developed and written by and with young people, reflects on these questions and challenges. It includes 19 case studies about young people’s engagement in participatory governance.

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