Google Hangout Series: Youth & Open Government
Visit our new beta site at

Google Hangout Series: Youth & Open Government

Date: Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Time: 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. ET (14:00 – 15:00 GMT or convert time)
Location: World Bank Live Online

The Google Hangout has concluded, view the replay below.

Based on the Global Opening Government survey, an overwhelming percent of young people aged 18-25 in the 62 countries surveyed want their governments to be more open (e.g., 80% in Mongolia, 81% in Indonesia, 82% in Mexico). As those who have most to lose by inheriting corrupt systems and non-open governments, young people are in a position to seize and produce the necessary tools to demand transparency, openness, and accountability, and to be more actively involved in government decision-making. Youth participation in governance is no longer just an option; it is a necessity.

In this first of a series of Google Hangouts on Youth & Open Government, we asked the questions: Can young people make their governments be more open, transparent, and accountable? What are the incentives and opportunities for governments to engage with their youth population? Equally, how can young people leverage new technologies to help their governments listen and respond to its citizens’ needs and feedback?

View highlights from the event below:

View the entire Google Hangout session below:

View the replay of the chat below


This hangout was the first in a series of hangouts related to Youth & Open Government.
Stay tuned for the following sessions:
- Youth Inclusion, Open Government in the Asian Context (March 18th, 2014 - TBC)
- Youth Exclusion, Jobs, Ending Poverty (April 22nd, 2014 - TBC)


(Moderator) Editor, YouThink!, World Bank
Director, PIDES; Mexico City Open Government Program
Moderator, Open Government Strategist, The World Bank
Country Innovations Manager, Affiliated Network for Social Accountability in East Asia and the Pacific (ANSA–EAP)
Read what others are asking
Foysal Ahmed Sabbir
I am Sabbir. I am a student of Master's of Law of Jagannath University. I live in Dhaka. But i have a village house. I want to work for village people. Can i get opportunity?
in my opinion,the government should send the investigation team in-depth investigation in order to know the situation more clearly,however,i think the Chinese government has done a good job in this regard.
Emmanuel Marfo
I have participated in the Social Accountability Training.Hope I can share my experiences ?
Ebenezer Ramos Bonbon
The youth can lead. By integrating them to the system, but giving them autonomy in implementing and instituting major reforms in the governmental process, with the plethora of fresh ideas that they have constructed, they can be able to give faster, better, real, solutions to the ills we do have right now. One good example, yet currently embattled in the Philippine Congress right now is the right of the young people to participate directly in governance through the Sangguniang Kabataan (Youth Councils) which enables 15 years old and above to participate in making laws, creating plans and implementing programs and projects from the top to the grassroots level. Though issues of corruption persists, it has been proved that it was due to the interference and collaboration of higher officials. If they will be given the much higher task of check and balances through enabling mechanisms, and a certain degree of interdependence and autonomy, they might as well prove to the old that they can, and they will do something, if the elders do not meddle with youth affairs. Now, the question lies, are the elders ready to retire, and give up their post, and give the baton of leadership to the youth?
Dumisani Mthombeni
1. In the third world countries and in particular in Africa NGOs which have traditionally been calling for democracy, transparency, good governance and open governance etc have been percieved to be pushing other political agendas and have been further accused of supporting and sympathizing with opposition parties (eg in Zimbabwe); that has made it very difficult for us the youth to approach government and convince it that we do not have any hidden agenda in calling for the embracing of all the above listed values that promote open governance. How can we as young people who are genuinely concerned about our future impact positively and be real gamechangers under such circumstances where we are viewed with suspicion and we are not part of government establishment? 2. Young people in third world countries have for so many years been divided along political lines; we are finding it extremely difficult to bring them together so that they can all speak with one voice in demanding the promotion of open governance because of polarization, young people are not forthcoming and are not uniting for the sake of their future. How can we break the impasse and make the youth realise the importance of unity of purpose and adoption of open governance?
Craig Dean
United Kingdom
How can networks between young people in different countries be used to improve governments accountability at a national level? Do you have any examples of this?
Meron Bayu
United States
I was born and grew up in Ethiopia. However, I now reside in the United States. My question is, how can youth abroad of their native countries make a change in African states with corrupt governments? Taking into consideration that there is littel to no freedom of speech, and heavy punishment on any oppostion ideas or parties.
How can we minimize the high rate of corruption in Africa especially Nigeria and when are the leaders gonna entrust the leadership position onto the hand of our vibrant youth, the elderly one are killing the system.
Adeyanju Abiodun Emmanuel
How can World Bank involve more youth in its projects in Africa? Movement Against Social Stigma is operating in Nigeria using undercover agents to uncover secret perpetrators. How can World Bank support our work?
We have a younger president, I think the youths would benefit more during his term.
Nadia Ratna
What kind of actions youth can take to participate in open government enforcement? Most of the time I tend to think that not until we reach the position of authority to actually make impact. Do you agree on this? If not, why?
Liliana Medina
How can World Bank involve more youth in its projects in Latin America?
Reynald Trillana
1. How do you deal with a political culture that puts too much premium on experience and age, and believes that youth participation is simply a "requirement" to fulfill? In the Philippines we had an elected youth council that was effectively coopted by traditional politicians. The council became a training ground for politicians we do not like instead of a venue for meaningful youth participation.
Lokhaze Ali
The future belongs to the youth... They should practice what they believe in RIGHT NOW in order for them to have a future of their choice... We all know the systems are failing miserably because of the corruption and incapability of the top few... New ideas based on latest technological skills to improve the living standards should be brought in not only in the developed countries but also in the underdeveloped countries... Such ideas are considered inappropriate by the non-techs... Make it a better world and for that, the present policies are not working well... Time for new thinking...
Dini Rahim
How could youth be involved in ensuring the open government system is in place if they are still dealing with other dire needs issues such as discrimination, inequality of access to education ?
Dr. Ashish Manohar Urkude
We had hot discussion and SWOT analyses recently and we found that this world is not ready, at present for direct democracy and transperency and openness, though we all youth around the world in all countries demand it. What are your opinions on these? What could be the process to achieve it?
Jelena Coric
How can youth add to political stability in developing countries? Political disengagement leads to violence; violence takes away from GDP growth and investment. How can governments take steps to invest in youth political engagement? Has it been done before and how was it successful?
Mallo Paul Lokiru
I'm A Student Of Economics And Applied Statistics At Kampala International University, Uganda. In A Country that Claims To Be Democratic Where An Efficient Economic Decision Can Result From A Ballot Box, What Could Be The Best Way The Youth Can Take To Ensure Transparency Is Always Exercised By Governments When Making Economic Decisions?. Thanks
Today's youtg is armed with the indispensable weapons of development; new knowledge, new technologies, strategies and creativity tailored to the tiny village we call tye world today. That notwithstanding, they remain in the periferiesif decision-making and power. The consequence is what we have today all over:scamming, fraud and war. This is because knowledge us like a gun, he who has it, badly wantw his chance to fire it. The exclusion if young people from the table unyo the backseats of boardrooms makes them eaey targets for brainwashing. This partly explains why they usually make up a majority behind tye numerous new political parties in Africa that claim democracy, but who always end up vanishing with taxpayers money. In effect, any government, serious about opening up cannot do it without active and autonomous youth inclusion.
Joke Lannoye
United Kingdom
Hi all, unfortunately I cannot participate in the google hangout tomorrow, but I wanted to share the following opportunity for you to share your views on governance and youth, which will be used in the development of the Post-2015 framework: The crowdsourcing platform is organised by the UN Envoy for Youth, and governance is one of the topics they are consulting people on. Follow the link and join the conversation!
Whayman L. Butterfield
Why do Government officials confuse the term infrostructure and sustainability with buildings & business instead of its citizens who are & can be the largest shareholder??
tarisai norman mkwacha
How best can a third world country achieve an Open Government System without effecting regime change or atleast undergoing conflict?
Ekellem Desmond
What role could Young People play in making governments especially in political system where the power in government do not give youths the opportunity to do so
Nikhil DSouza
Does the world bank involve local youth in consultations in projects where it partners with national governments ? As a young person are there opportunities for me to participate in such consultations ?
What if the youth became the government?
Mahesh Chandrasekar
United Kingdom
Young people with disabilities and in particular young women with disabilities often experience negative social attitudes; this is further compounded by restricted access to physical environment, transport, information and communication technologies and experience institutional barriers. All of which prevents them from equitable access to health, education, livelihood, justice and in leading a fulfilling life. Young Voices is a global network of over 1200 young campaigners with disabilities from over 20 countries initiated by Leonard Cheshire Disability to end extreme poverty, discrimination and exclusion experienced by people with disabilities. From this forum, I would like to know the opportunities for the participation of young people with disabilities in governance.
Helene Opsal
There seems to be a big push for youth to engage at global and national levels of governance, however the first point of contact between youth and their government representatives often takes place at the local level. How can technology enhance youth engagement in local governance, particularly considering potential capacity gaps and limited resources? What are the incentives for local government to engage with youth through new technologies given these existing challenges?