NEWS published on 16 Oct 2019

Portrait of a generation: from South Mediterranean countries to Europe, who are today's young people?

After the European edition of the Generation What? survey carried out in 2016, a new chapter was launched last year in Southern and Eastern Mediterranean countries[1],[2].

On Monday 14 October, the EBU organized a roundtable in Brussels to discuss the results of the regional survey and how they could impact – and improve – the role of media and audiovisual policies in relation to our neighbours from the southern Mediterranean region.

In this unique survey, thousands of young people – 18 to 35 years old - describe their living conditions, voice their opinions on society, discuss their aspirations and their fears relating to a wide range of subjects, including their daily lives, personal relationships, studies, working conditions, leisure, obligations, private life, political outlook, feelings and ideas.

The results of the survey offer a broad and insightful overview of the generation’s preoccupations and dreams, often unexpected. The comparative study demonstrates that, contrary to common misconceptions, young people from Europe and Southern & Eastern Mediterranean countries do have a lot in common. The report reflects – among other things - a general distrust of institutions and a unanimous condemnation of injustice and inequalities. It also highlights that young people from both regions need cultural goods to be happy and believe in the virtues of solidarity.

The participants in the EBU debate highlighted the essential role of public service media in building up resilient democracies to better meet the expectations of the young generation. The EBU demonstrated in a recent report that independent public service media are a key factor for democracy. Supporting our neighbours and helping them establish or maintain well-funded independent broadcasting organizations is therefore a factor of stabilization and meets young people’s preoccupations.

The debate involved representatives of the European Commission and the European Parliament, who committed to supporting the dissemination of the results in order to contribute to broader discussions amongst all parties and help relevant policy making.

[1] Generation What? Arabic is a project funded by the European Commission, managed by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), in cooperation with the Arab States Broadcasting Union (ASBU), COPEAM and the production companies Yami2 and Upian.


[2] This particular survey covered the following countries: Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, Tunisia.


Relevant Links

Generation What?

Contact detail

Julie Lenoir
Junior European Policy Adviser
+32 22869147