Thursday, 08.06.2023 - FES EU Office

FES Youth Studies: Understanding Political Disillusionment among young people in CEE & the Baltics

What do young people in Central and Eastern Europe think about politics and society? On 8 June 2023, we will present the results of our FES youth studies on these questions at our office in Brussels.

Young people demonstrate on the street with placards and megaphones.

© Images

While Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) has increasingly become a focal point of European political discussions in the past few years, little attention has been paid to the political and societal attitudes, fears, and hopes of young people in the region. Our recently published FES Youth Study seeks to bridge this gap by giving voice to their often-overlooked perspectives.

Therefore, we would kindly like to invite you to our in-person roundtable discussion on the political and socio-economic concerns of young people from CEE and the Baltic States.

Date: 08/06/2023
Time: 11:00-12:30 (light lunch from 12.30)
Location: Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung EU Office, Rue Taciturne 38, 1000 Brussels


Significant endorsement of democracy and supranational organisations

The study uncovered a concerning trend of political disengagement among young people in CEE and the Baltics, with only a small percentage expressing a strong interest in politics. This disengagement is reflected in the low levels of trust in national institutions, with political parties being the least trusted across the board. However, the survey also reveals a significant endorsement of democracy and supranational organisations among the youth, contrasting with the lack of trust in their own political systems.

Socioeconomic issues are the most pressing concerns

Socioeconomic issues emerged as the most pressing concerns for young people in the region. Low wages, poverty risk, social inequality, and brain drain are key concerns, reflecting the high levels of youth unemployment and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. While their peers in Western Europe prioritize environmental protection and climate change, young people in CEE and the Baltics remain focused on socioeconomic challenges. Socioeconomic security plays a vital role in their life satisfaction, future plans, and political beliefs. Understanding the attitudes of CEE and Baltic youth is crucial for addressing their concerns and aspirations, fostering engagement and working towards building a more inclusive and prosperous future for the region.

We are delighted to have Aleksandra Iwanowska, Foreign Affairs Secretary at FMS (Polish Socialist Youth), Elena Avramovska, FES Senior Researcher, Mārtiņš Kaprāns, Senior Researcher at the University of Latvia, and Matthias Ecke, Member of the European Parliament, help us uncover the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

We look forward to welcoming you to our event. The registration is closed. 

For more information, please contact: Marco.Schwarz(at)

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