Head of the Project: Melita ŠVOB
Researchers: Carmen-Ljubica BRČIĆ, Ognjen ČALDAROVIĆ, Vjeran KATUNARIĆ, Sonja PODGORELEC
The project “Internationales Lernen” is an international project approved by the Direction for Education and Youth of the European Union (no. 95047 Youth for Europe Programme 1996–1999). The project was carried out at the same time in five countries: Germany, Latvia, Greece, the Netherlands, and Croatia. Each country provided its own team of experts and funds for the realization of the project. The project’s coordinator was Eberhardt-Karls Universität Tübingen, Institut für Erziehungswissenschaft I, Dr. Josef Held, where the central administrative coordinating office was situated and whose work was been approved by the European Union. The main task of the project was comparative research of youth in Central European countries (Germany and the Netherlands), countries in the South (Greece), North (Latvia), and East of Europe (Croatia) in which young people lived in different conditions of economic and social development. For the purpose of the research a big city was chosen in each country and within the city, one district were various groups of young people (of different ethnic origin, different economic positions and education, groups of migrants, refugees, workers working abroad, and others) were to be found. The possibilities of the young for their integration/exclusion into social processes were examined as well as their relations towards young people pertaining to other groups living in the same district (e.g. members of other ethnic groups, foreigners, refugees) and their international orientation (in the sense of European integration and cooperation).
Between 1996 and 1999, researchers of the Croatian team published a number of scientific papers in various journals and books. Part of the papers was dedicated to the development of a conceptual and theoretical framework for the research of individual orientations of young people. This framework served as a basis for the interpretation of the research conducted in five European countries as a part of the international project. The existing socio-cultural patterns of behavior were analyzed, reflecting to great extent types of structuring in society – segmentary in traditional societies and fragmentary in modern ones. Other scientific papers presented the results of the empirical survey conducted in Dubrava on a sample of 200 respondents in the final grades of primary and secondary schools. The results of the questionnaire survey indicate traces of characteristics of the segmental structures of society in the attitudes of youth towards their local ties, the perception of excessive social differences, ties to the family, and the perception of the language community, not necessarily national, as being the most important on the social level. Some other characteristics such as the feeling of loneliness, the inclination of older respondents to make friendships on an individual basis, socialize in places without a strictly institutional framework (cafés, disco clubs), and their experience of danger in regard to certain places during the evening hours in the area of their local community, have been recognized as results of a more modern, urban and fragmentary structure. The research confirmed permissiveness in inter-group relations but at the same time the lack of initiative. Representatives of some social groups have proven in particular to be less ‘’tolerant”. Young people participate in rituals and contacts adapted to their age and lifestyle, including also open confrontations (street fights) among themselves. When asked about the future, the respondents mostly express attitudes of a cosmopolitan character. The final conclusion is that the social context, mentality, and the (barely indicated) individual orientations of the respondents in this study show mixed characteristics of segmentary and fragmentary, traditional and modern society, with reliance on traditional forms of social solidarity more often than on the support of bureaucratic institutions.