Youth Strategy Overview

The Austrian Youth Strategy, coordinated by the Federal Chancellery, is a process designed to strengthen and develop youth policy throughout Austria. The goal of this strategy is to bring together policies and measures for young people, to make them systematic and to optimise their effectiveness. The main focus of this strategy is on the 14- to 24-year-old age group, though the youth strategy extends further to encompass young people under 30 years of age. It also aims to discover new fields of action and cooperation, to make new calls for action and to support these with concrete measures. The Federal Chancellery considers itself the impetus behind this initiative. The implementation of the youth objectives and measures is the task and responsibility of those involved in shaping policy and it must be supported by a broad youth policy consensus. To meet the requirement of youth policy as a cross-sectorial issue, coordination structures on different level were implemented.

Fields of action

4 fields of action are important for the Austrian Youth Strategy:

  1. Learning and Employment
  2. Participation and Initiative
  3. Quality of Life and a Spirit of Cooperation
  4. Media and Information

National youth objectives

As part of the Austrian Youth Strategy, each federal ministry developed and defined one or more national “youth objective(s)” within its own sphere of competence. The youth objectives defined by the federal ministries can unite the existing, build on the existing, integrate new aspects, take current phenomena as a starting point or combine them. Regardless of how visionary, comprehensive or focused the youth objective is formulated, it should express the ministry's efforts to improve conditions for young people in Austria. Therefore, all ministries define measures that contribute to reach the youth objectives.

Going beyond this, the national youth objectives are treated cross-sectorial. So each ministry can contribute to every youth objective with concrete measures.

As mentioned above, the Austrian Youth Strategy is a lively and ongoing process that allows to include new youth objectives and measures any time. This ensures that the Austrian Youth Strategy meets challenges adequately.

Youth Participation

During the development of the Austrian Youth Strategy, youth participation has played and will continue to play a central role. Youth participation is also one of the 4 fields of action of the Austrian Youth Strategy. A core criterion of the Austrian Youth Strategy is the active inclusion of young people

Link to other strategies and programmes

Existing youth aspects are identified in national action plans and strategies in order to create an overview of activities in the various federal ministries that goes beyond the definition of youth objectives. This is an ongoing process to emphasize youth-related aspects in national strategies and action plans.

Furthermore, it was important for the Federal Chancellery that the EU Youth Strategy 2019-2027 and the European Youth Goals were implemented in the Austrian Youth Strategy appropriate. This was also reflected in the decision of the Austrian Council of Ministers of 24 October 2018. It stated that the European Youth Goals should be taken into account. 

The 11 European Youth Goals are considered in the process of the Austrian Youth Strategy in three ways:

  • All federal ministries were informed about the Youth Goals
  • Each defined national youth objective is assigned to a European Youth Goal
  • The measures, which contribute to the national youth objectives are assigned to the European Youth Goals.

The Federal Government took up the further implementation of the Austrian Youth Strategy, as well as the commitment to the European Youth Goals within its Government Programme 2020-2024.


Youth Screening

A further instrument of the Youth Strategy is the Youth Screening. It draws attention to the concerns of young people in all areas of politics and the bureaucracy. Within the different administrative departments, the "Knowledge – Transparency – Latitude" (KTL) process provides for stable structures. A summary of the KTL model is as follows:

  • Providing knowledge about the situation, needs and diversity of the target group (young people) as well as about important youth policy stakeholders at the various levels.
  • Providing transparency about important youth policy measures, activities and services of the individual administrative departments as the necessary foundation for youth policy coordination efforts.
  • Engendering innovative and creative cooperation between elected officials, government agencies, young people and other stakeholders give everyone involved a new kind of latitude.

The Youth Competence Centre supports administrative departments as they make use of this process.


Youth Competence Centre