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  • Writer's picturealicjapawluczuk

digital transformation: RAY Network's Panel on youth work in times of crises

Updated: Oct 12, 2022

#digitaltransformation in the youth field: can we predict its future? I got asked this question yesterday during the RAY Network's Panel on youth work in times of crises and the role of #youth#research.

the short answer: NO.

the long answer: here are some evidence-based recommendations we should consider when moving forward. Below, I'm also providing links to some of the articles I mentioned during my talk.

1. Let's consider and critically analyse digital tech as a new actor or/and a power source in youth work (e.g., is AI the new youth worker? does it empower the youth work process?)

2. Let's ensure that our approaches to examining and addressing digital inequalities are grounded in real-world needs (e.g., it's not about reviewing someone's digital skills once but life-long learning). There is a need for a sector-wide approach for continuous analysis of how socio-economic and cultural factors intersect with digital participation.

3. Let's think about new ways and formats of ongoing and holistic support (e.g., training, tools, well-being, access to specialists, mentors) for all stakeholders. We cannot expect youth workers (for example) to keep up to date with the latest digital tech.

4. Let's re-think the ways we define IMPACT - it should not be all about success stories, 'likes', and 'counts' but genuine learning, failing, creativity, and critical thinking (in line with 21st-century skills).

5. Let's normalise 'digital-free' youth-focused activities in the era of digital transformation.

As always, it is impossible to fit all of the research and nuance into a short talk, but happy to have a chat about any of these -

About the panel

  • For more information about the panel please click here.

  • The video recording from the panel can be watched here.

Image source: RAY Network


Pawluczuk, A. & Serban, A. (2022). Technology and the new power dynamics: limitations of digital youth work. The EU-CoE youth partnership.

Pawluczuk, A. (2022). Insights into Digital Transformation in the Youth Field Supported by the EU Youth Programmes. SALTO Inclusion and Diversity & SALTO Participation and Information.

Pawluczuk, A. (2022). The emerging digital divides: Covid-19 and European youth work. United Nations University.

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