20.10.2015 | Von:
Beata Krzywosz-Rynkiewicz

Psychological Portraits of young European citizens

How do young people understand the concept of active citizenship and to what extent are they ready to become involved in citizenship activities? Are citizenship activities linked with young people's personality traits, and if so- how? By answering these questions this research paper focuses on how personality can influence citizenship activity and results help for a better understanding of young people's reediness for different citizenship actions.

Six types of citizenship activities have been identified: passive, semi-active, politically, socially, personally engaged and change-oriented. 3794 students aged 11-14-18, girls (1955) and boys (1839) from cities (1735) and towns (2031), from 11 European countries where examined with Citizenship Behavior Questionnaire and BIG FIVE tests (NEO FFI and BFQ). Results show high level of passive, semi-active and personal type of citizenship, very limited engagement in politics and action for legal protesting in all countries. Quick cluster analysis revealed four profiles of young citizens: (1) Political Activists, (2) Apolitical Activists (3) Alienated Poli ticians; (4) Alienated Individualists. The results show that personality traits clearly differentiate Activists’ groups from groups of Alienated. Political Activists are characterized by higher levels of extraversion, openness and conscientiousness. Moreover Apolitical Activists are significantly more agreeable than Political Activists.


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