Young people’s lives in contemporary Europe are characterised by multiple complex challenges which affect their access to and enjoyment of human and social rights.

The Council of Europe’s co-management system is an example of good governance practice in participatory democracy and citizen participation. It is a place for common reflection, combining the voice of young Europeans and that of public authorities responsible for youth affairs. This dialogue, in a spirit of mutual understanding and respect, gives legitimacy and relevance to the programme of activities proposed by the Joint Council on Youth (CMJ) and meaningfulness to intergovernmental co-operation for responsive and needs-based youth policies. The inclusion of young people in the search for responses to emerging challenges also enables the Council of Europe to benefit from their unique perspective, experience and expectations on issues such as technological development and climate change. Beyond governments and youth organisations, youth work practitioners, educators, researchers, policy experts, and young people from grassroots movements are routinely involved.

Council of Europe action in the youth sector is guided by a comprehensive strategy and run through a comanagement structure. Youth issues are included in each Council of Europe action, and youth policy standards are promoted throughout member states and through institutional co-operation between the European Commission and the Council of Europe.

The Organisation also grants a quality label for youth centres, which allows a growing network of youth centres to be associated with the its values and for youth policy standards to reach a broader spectrum of young people.

Youth Co-Management

  • CDEJ European Steering Committee for Youth
  • CMJ Joint Council of Youth
  • CCJ Advisory Council on Youth
    These committees compose a co-management structure to etablish the priorities of the youth sector and to oversee and co-ordinate intergovernmental work in the field of youth
    • CPJ Programme Committee on Youth
      This subordinate body establishes the programme of a activities of the European Youth Centres and the European Youth Foundation, in accordance with decisions of the Joint Council on priorities and immediate outcomes.

Joint Council on Youth – CMJ

The CMJ oversees the Council of Europe’s programme in the youth field and advises the Committee of Ministers. It is the policy-making body of the youth sector, bringing together the members of the European Steering Committee for Youth (CDEJ) and the Advisory Council on Youth (CCJ).

 Focus 2022-2025

Protecting youth civil society and young people and supporting their participation in democratic processes; Roma youth participation; access of young people from disadvantaged neighbourhoods to social rights; climate crisis; youth and anti-racism; rural youth; supporting young refugees in transition to adulthood

 Civil society involvement 

  • Participant: Conference of INGOs (CINGO)
  • Observers
  • Consultation with civil society, either through direct participation in meetings, through dedicated hearings in writing

Through the European Youth Centres (EYCs) in Strasbourg and Budapest, the Council of Europe provides young people with direct access to the Council of Europe and its institutions. They provide quality residential and training infrastructure for youth experts and trainers from the states parties to the European Cultural Convention. Any organisation, association, institution, structure or youth network which respects and defends the Council of Europe’s values can use the EYCs to organise an activity.

The European Youth Centre Strasbourg (EYCS) with its meeting and conference rooms, recreational areas, garden, restaurant area and bedrooms has a capacity of up to 300 people for events and can accommodate up to 90 overnight guests.

The European Youth Centre in Budapest (EYCB) with its meeting and conference rooms, restaurant, bedrooms, garden and recreational area, has a capacity of up to 300 people for events and can accommodate up to 140 overnight guests.