May 27, 2017; Mykolayiv, Ukraine

Lecture for participants of “Conference of Change” in Mykolayiv on role of Ukrainian youth in the world. Conference was organized by Anna Karanda and Viktoriia Gumetskaya to empower Youth of Mykolayiv region. Different possibilities for youth impact on global transformations were presented by IPSD expert on the example of One Young World network, community of 7000 young leaders from 196 countries; World Youth Movement for Democracy and European Grassroots Antiracist Movement.
In our 25-year journey of independence, Ukraine has still failed on key issues, including elimination of total corruption, “oligarchalization” of the economy and politics, lack of independent and fair judicial system, low living standards. Among the lessons there are unfair privatization, absence of systemic reforms, the inability to defend national interests in the international arena, the construction of inefficient economic model. Reality, for Ukrainians, is unreformed energy-intensive economy, still inefficient and corrupt government institutions, absence of rule of law, tendency to decreasing living standards for most of Ukrainians and luck of trust between different stake holders in the country.
We understand how far the world has come since the years of our confusion, how much catching up remains to be done, and how difficult it is for Ukraine to compete with developed, neighboring economies. But Ukraine is in a point in history when we faced not only with a war in XXI century but also with the necessity of a long and difficult process of reforms and socio-economic transformation; start of international cooperation and participation of Ukraine in overcoming global treats and challenges. And the role of Youth is extremely important in this processes! As the experience of the post-communist transformations in Central and Eastern Europe has demonstrated, the success of such transitions to a large extent depends on the ability of civil society to assist policy-makers in better identifying social problems, articulating public interests, formulating policy agendas, working out policy solutions and public control of their realization; on the ability of young generation to assert themselves as active strong players in defending and protecting their rights, the ability to produce ideas, propose solutions and change the political, social, economic and cultural reality, to have their own agenda for strategic development of the country and sustainable development of this world.