Exit, Voice, Loyalty & the Political Response of Irish Youth to Socio-Economic Crisis

Thursday, 19 July 2018: 16:00
Oral Presentation
Grainne MCKEEVER, UCD, Ireland
This paper discusses the political response of Irish youth to the most recent financial crisis, using Albert Hirschman’s theory of Exit, Voice and Loyalty to examine the use of emigration and protest as responses to economic decline.It investigates the manifestation of both of these responses and the factors, which influenced young Irish citizens in their choice. It seeks to present the scope of the crisis amongst Irish youth in terms of unemployment, emigration and their experience of austerity and to establish an account of the impact of that experience upon the relationship between Irish citizens and state.This study explores various obstacles and issues affecting that relationship particularly in times of crisis, as well as analyzing the potential repercussions that these obstacles pose for the relationship between citizens and state. Finally it examines the notion of “loyalty” in the way that contemporary Irish society responds to socio-economic decline, particularly in regard to youth, it interrogates current systems of engaging young people in politics and explores the potential of post primary schooling as a means of improving this situation.This work is the product of participatory research with the youth activist group “We’re Not Leaving”, amongst various other elements of research.