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EACEA National Policies Platform


1. Youth Policy Governance

1.6 Evidence-based youth policy

Last update: 25 July 2023

Political Commitment to Evidence-Based Youth Policy

The Youth Law stimulates that public institutions implementing youth policy should evaluate the impact of their relevant policy actions on the youth population. According to the Youth Law, local governments developing an institutional system that works with youth have the right to establish youth councils whose tasks should include collecting and analysing information about local youth problems, needs and interests. The evaluation of youth interests, rights, needs and opportunities is one of the main principles of the youth policy (the principle of observance of youth interests).

The National Youth Strategy 2022-2027 includes the task "Implement a monitoring tool for evidence-based youth policy planning". The initiation of monitoring is planned to start in 2024.

Cooperation between policy-making and research

During the period from 2008 to 2015, the Ministry of Education and Science conducted monitoring studies on the quality of life of young people, their involvement in voluntary work, the activities of youth organizations, access to relevant information for young people, and other aspects of youth policy. These were implemented using the methodology of quantitative surveys of young people, supplemented by general statistical data on the number of young people in various target group divisions (gender, age). In 2014, an evaluation and update of the monitoring methodology was carried out, defining the most significant observable deficiencies and possibilities to eliminate them, and in 2015 a monitoring study was carried out using the updated and improved methodology, linking measurements with the Youth Policy Guidelines for 2015-2020. However, after that, monitoring measurements according to the developed methodology were not continued. In 2017, an analytical review of youth policy was carried out, the substantive scope of which was significantly wider than the previous monitoring studies. The review report included a review and characterization of the current practice and results of implementing youth policy, while indicating necessary improvements and enhancements both in the planning and implementation of youth policy and in providing practical support to increase the effectiveness of youth work. The review included data and information both on the characteristics of the target group of young people and on the characteristics of emigrant young people, and analyzed work with young people in municipalities, non-governmental sector work with young people, and effective indicators of youth policy. In addition, the review included a summary of studies implemented in the youth field.

In 2022, researchers began developing a concept for monitoring for youth policy and youth work.

National Statistics and available data sources

The Central Statistical Bureau collects all official statistics on the population of Latvia. Publications and databases are also available on the Central Statistical Bureau’s website.  Unfortunately, young people are not treated a separate target group and are not displayed in statistical summaries. The Central Statistical Bureau publishes annual statistical yearbooks that include basic information on the youth population (with the most recent available figures accessible in Latvian only). The Bureau also publishes annual publications like Children in Latvia, which gives in-depth statistical information on children in Latvia and their quality of life. Unfortunately, in these and other statistical data collected by the Central Statistical Bureau, the youth is most often defined in different age groups (mostly 15-24, sometimes also 18-24) than that which is defined in the Youth Law of Latvia (13-25). Therefore, it is difficult to carry out statistical data analyses of young people in Latvia within the age group defined by the law.

Budgetary Allocations supporting research in the youth field

Information support and research work in the field of youth from the state budget for youth is approximately 50 000 EUR.