NEWS7 August 2009

Vinspired aims to give voice to youth – and data access

UK Youth

UK— Youth volunteering charity Vinspired is backing Voicebox, an open-source research project that aims for a better understanding of young people - while helping them to understand their peers better.

The research is focused on six areas, beginning with an examination of youth stereotypes and whether they are accurate.

Participants are also asked to record how they spend their time, with future questions set to address the issues young people care about, where they go and what they do, the values they hold and their feelings towards their communities.

All data from the research will be made available for download by anyone, and an API (application programming interface) has been set up to encourage users to create their own visualisations of the results.

Writing on his blog, 19-year-old project spokesman Tarik Fontenelle said: “So much has been made around the negativity of the British youth, whether it be around stabbings, binge drinking, teenage pregnancies or a whole host of other issues that the media have adapted to demonise the kids.

“Throughout this project, through the gathering and sharing of data, I hope to puncture a few inaccuracies.”

Vinspired plans to use the findings to aid its efforts to encourage more 16- to 25-year-olds in the UK to volunteer – though it says all age groups and nationalities are welcome to take part in the research.

The Voicebox project is at