28 Sep 2017

If the leaders of the future leave, who will lead in the future?

According to a survey 82% of young Slovak's think that politicians do not care about their opinions and just a fifth of respondents trust the National Council or the government.

Ria Gehrerová
Ria Gehrerová Denník N, Slovakia
Source: Denník N
If the leaders of the future leave, who will lead in the future? - NewsMavens
Departures sign at airport terminal. Jacob Axford/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Why this story matters:

About 1 in 4 young people want to leave Slovakia within the next three years.

For how long? They want to move to another country and stay there, not for a month, or a year, but forever. Should we start worrying about Slovakia emptying out of our youngest and brightest?

According to a recent survey, we have much cause for concern. As many as 82% of young Slovaks think that politicians do not care about their opinions and just a fifth of respondents trust the National Council or the government.

And this is not just a problem in Slovakia. Young people are also skeptical of their leaders in Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary. Interestingly, the highest percentage -- almost 48% -- of young people who are not even thinking about leaving their country live in Poland. Though this may not be the cause, these survey results do coincide with a recent surge of nationalism there.

Instead of waiting around to wave them goodbye, we should start asking why these young Slovaks want to leave. There is also good news in the survey. According to the result, they trust their president, Andrej Kiska, and leaders in self-governing regions or towns. In general, young people also trust EU institutions, NGOs and youth organizations.

So we have every opportunity to start a conversation with these young folks about their future. It'd be a shame not to use it. Slovakia would be a sad country without them.

Details from the story:

  • A survey on the attitudes of young people was held in the Visegrad Group, a partnership between Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia
  • In each country, 700 people were surveyed
  • The survey was conducted by the Youth Council organisation and the Focus research company 
  • It found 29% of Slovaks aged 15 to 24 years want to leave Slovakia within three years

Project #Femfacts co-financed by European Commission Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology as part of the Pilot Project – Media Literacy For All

The information and views set out on this website are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the European Union. Neither the European Union institutions and bodies nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein.

NewsMavens is a media start-up within Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland's largest liberal broadsheet published by Agora S.A. NewsMavens is currently financed by Gazeta Wyborcza and Google DNI Fund.
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