Mechanisms of promoting positive youth development in the context of socio-economical transformations (POSIDEV)

 

The primary goal of this project is to examine the mechanisms responsible for positive developmental outcomes in the context of socio-economic transformations during the transition from adolescence to young adulthood and to promote the development of competencies related to positive youth development. We aim to identify key factors influencing successful adjustment and functioning in young adulthood, and to offer theoretical and practical guidelines for youth policy.

 

We aim (1) To identify mechanisms of positive youth development during the transition from adolescence to young adulthood, conducting the longitudinal study; (2) to develop an intervention program aimed at strengtheningyouth competencies related to better psychological functioning.

 

The objectives of the study are:  (a) To identify a set of dimensions and corresponding indicators that has utility for benchmarking the positive adjustment of young adults. Observable behavioral measures of positive functioning in adolescence and young adulthood will be identified wherever possible because such behaviors are the ultimate targets of successful development and can be affected by interventions earlier in life.   (b) To gain more information about different pathways (trajectories) during the transition from adolescence to young adulthood and the factors related to this, in order to understand the determinants of good youth adjustment including individual differences, socio-economic circumstances, school, family and work contexts. (c) To evaluate key factors related to successful transition from adolescence to young adulthood; to introduce gender perspective into the analysis of positive youth development, and to analyze specific gender-related factors that shape developmental pathways of women and men in young adulthood. (d) To design and implement intervention program in control and experimental groups of young people. The program will be aimed at development of youth competencies related to better psychological functioning. The effectiveness of the Program will be evaluated, and recommendations for practitioners will be formulated. Finally, based on the results of the longitudinal study and intervention program, we will present the main findings about the mechanisms of positive youth development and formulate guiding principles for youth policy in the scientific report.

 

This study is aimed at 16-26 year-old young people. Two extensive sets of longitudinal data will be used. First, a new longitudinal study with a sample (N=1500, ages 16-18) recruited under this project will be carried out. Next, data will be used from the previous longitudinal study (N ~ 1200, ages 16-22), participants will be followed up for 3 years under this project. Information on individual characteristics, socio-demographic situation, relationships with peers, parents and teachers, as well as data on positive developmental indicators will be collected. Questionnaires for data collections will be developed or translated. Semi-structured interviews will be conducted with smaller sub-samples for in-depth analysis. Sophisticated tools of statistical analysis, such as multi-level modeling and mixture modeling within the SEM framework, will be applied. Based on the results of the studies, Intervention Program aimed at strengthening youth competencies related to better psychological functioning will be developed and implemented. The effectiveness assessment will help to identify intervention tools that can facilitate successful transitions from adolescence to young adulthood.  

 

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