Hopefully you can’t tell from our video (URL to be provided) but we had to grab someone else’s phone midway through out interview with the Minister Liv Signe Navarsete here at Dyroyseminaret.
We were really pleased that she agreed to speak to us about her passion for youth participation in democracy. This is a woman of vision: Navarsete wants young people to get involved at all levels – local municipality, region and national government. She believes that the youth will dare to change things. Unlike so many of our UK ministers and politicians she respects her country’s young people and believes that without them engaged her government and political life will be poorer.
I have a healthy scepticism for politicians, not least when they know they are on film but I believe her, she speaks carefully but with commitment. She says she is so committed to this agenda that she is prepared to put to money behind it – she wants there to be a budget for local youth participation in political decision making.
The web science students are learning a lot about how the web might be harnessed for political participation today – Tim Davies has been a huge source for speed peer learning so that we have people live blogging for the first time (respect due to Nicole and Chris) ; Huw Davies has been running with Storify to capture the themes, and the Tweets (#Dyroy) have been flying.
If the heat generated in this conference room where everyone is frantically tapping on laptop keyboards or uploading updates on smart phones is anything to go by this is powerful stuff.
How would it be if young people in the UK were included in politics and had their voices heard? Could our web science students help this happen?