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Research-based recommendations for the European youth programmes

Excited to read our newest analysis from our RAY Monitoring surveys conducted with beneficaries of the Erasmus+ Youth and the European Solidarity Corps programmes? We have good news – the research report is currently in its final stages and will be published by the end of June.

If you don’t want to wait until then, we have even better news – first insights and findings were discussed and presented during our last Youth Research Dialogues. The so-called RAY Monitoring editions explored data from different perspectives and various topics. You can rewatch them HERE.

Research-based recommendations for the European youth programmes. What can be learned from research for the next programme generation?

The best news: A summary of key findings from the Monitoring surveys from 2023, with some additional insights from the 2014-2020 programme generation and from RAY thematic research projects. RAY produced this paper for the discussions at the National Agencies for Youth Business Meeting earlier this year and we want to share the document as well as below some sneak peeks with you.


  • Intercultural Learning At Its Best: The European youth programmes are intercultural learning at its best: safe spaces to encounter differences with positive curiosity and explore them through constructive discourse and exchange.
  • European Powerhouses For Youth Work: The European youth programmes are the most important European powerhouses for enhancing youth work at local, regional and national level with an international dimension.
  • Forceful Catalysts For Empathy: The European youth programmes provide equalising learning environments for young people, who develop and strengthen empathy through their participation.
  • Lived Democracy: Erasmus+ Youth is a crucial safe space for youth leaders, youth trainers and youth workers to practice and live participatory democracy.
  • Non-Formal Empowerment: Erasmus+ Youth empowers young people and youth professionals by drawing on nonformal learning as the basis for its educational approach.
  • Lived Solidarity: The European Solidarity Corps provides a framework to live and experience solidarity in a local community context.
  • Volunteer Empowerment: The European Solidarity Corps sustainably empowers young people to pursue and persist volunteering in a variety of successful formats.


  • Looking Beyond Mobility: The European youth programmes need to get better at recognising the democratic practices within the programmes as practices that can shape, and change, societies.
  • Strengthening Diversity: The European youth programmes need to get better at strengthening, and reproducing, the diversity of European societies.
  • Impact Of The Pandemic: The European youth programmes struggle to compensate for the impact of the pandemic on the strength and resilience of the youth sector.
  • Consistency In Shaping Policy: Erasmus+ Youth needs to get better and more consistent at shaping youth policies, and at organising meaningful policy dialogue.
  • Consistency in Ensuring Quality: The European Solidarity Corps needs to get better at ensuring consistent quality across its volunteering projects.

Interested? – Read the whole summary HERE.


RAY conducts biennial monitoring surveys of the Erasmus+ Youth and European
Solidarity Corps programmes. The most recent surveys were completed at the end of 2023, gathering the perspectives of close to 24.000 project participants and more than 6.000 project team members. The monitoring surveys are complemented by selected thematic research projects, among others on competence development for European youth work (RAY COMP), digitalisation in youth work (RAY DIGI), and long-term effects of participation in the programmes (RAY LTE).

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