From 2014 until 2018, the FGYO is supporting 100 innovative Franco-German and trilateral projects that aim to promote young people’s remembrance of the First World War in all its diverse forms and encourages them to think about its impact and relevance for life today.
The projects are conceived as a way of thinking about the past, but also as an outlook on our common Franco-German future in Europe.
By funding these special projects the FGYO wants to urge young people, civil society stakeholders and organizations involved in youth work and education from the partner countries to develop collaborative projects. The aim is the transmission of European values and the comprehension of their real-world significance to encourage an active participation in commemoration and remembrance-related work.
From the group of experts invited by the FGYO in 2014 to discuss and exchange appropriate new concepts in peace education and remembrance work, a corresponding research group came about. This group has subsequently been active in accompanying the 100 innovative Franco-German and trilateral projects.
The main aim behind this research project is the clarification of how the participation in remembrance-related youth work projects can be framed and encouraged. The research group is working on conceptual methodologies that can be applied in this context and what possible impacts those might have.
The FGYO created a set of pedagogical guidelines entitled “History and Remembrance in International Youth Movements”, which contains suggestions for youth exchange programs regarding remembrance and commemoration culture. The application of these pedagogical guidelines constitutes another research topic.
The intercultural aspect of the individual project merits special attention in order to draw up potential ways for further development of content-related and pedagogical approaches.
The specific research tasks are the following:
- What kind of activities and events are offered for which target groups by which actors in Franco-German youth work?
- Which aims and content are characteristic for the projects and which methods are applied by the organizers of different events?
- How can one help young people to develop an interest for political contexts and their contemplation by confronting them with the First World War, its traumatic consequences, the consequences of its failed historical reappraisal during the Weimar Republic, the history of escalation during the Third Reich and the history of the Second World War?
- Which intercultural competences are acquired by young people due to their participation in projects related to the Franco-German youth work?
- How can the transmission of intercultural skills be facilitated and described in terms of the actual and concrete behavior among people?
- How far can Franco-German projects go beyond being merely seen as youth encounters?
Methodology and procedure
Regarding content-related, organizational and intercultural aspects of the 100 individual projects, the research group conducts a quantitative evaluation by means of an online survey. Furthermore, one or two projects with different target groups are selected for a close case-study each year. This study also contains extensive qualitative interviews with participants and organizers.
The results of the research group will be published as a working paper to allow for concrete conclusions and specific recommendations in the context of practical Franco-German youth work. This further contains an evaluation by the experts of the use and dissemination of the guidelines formulated in “History and Remembrance in International Youth Movements”.
Members of the research group
- Laurent Jalabert, Lecturer in Modern History, Centre de recherche universitaire lorrain d’histoire (CRULH), Université de Lorraine, Nancy
- Diemut König, Pedagogue (Dipl. Päd.), FITT gGmbH – Institute for Technology Transfer, htw saar, University of Applied Sciences Saarbrücken
- Prof. Dr. Simone Odierna, Department of Social Work and Childhood Pedagogy, Faculty for Social Sciences, University of Applied Sciences Saarbrücken