International Partnerships

Youth Sounding Board

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Youth empowerment is a top priority for EU Commissioner for International Partnerships, Jutta Urpilainen, and the EU believes that young people must be involved in shaping and implementing its external action. The Youth Sounding Board aims to create a real, fundamental, long-lasting change in how the EU engages with young people in its development cooperation.


The Youth Sounding Board is a space for young people to have an influence on the EU’s external action through its international partnerships. Playing an advisory role to both Commissioner Urpilainen and the Directorate-General for International Partnerships, the Board will help make EU action more participatory, relevant and effective for young people in EU partner countries, across all political priorities:

The decisions we make today will determine our world tomorrow. Young people must have their say.
- EU Commissioner for International Partnerships, Jutta Urpilainen


Over 4 000 applications from more than 150 countries were received during the application phase.

The 25 selected members are a diverse group of talented, committed and inspiring young people from Africa, the Middle East, Asia, the Pacific and Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as Europe.

You can find out who the members are here.


There will be at least four Board meetings per year, either online or in person if the situation allows. Members will also respond to ad-hoc issues and requests. Participation in the Youth Sounding Board is voluntary and unpaid.

Through their work, members will build links with similar structures and existing youth initiatives at international, regional and country level, both in the EU and in the partner countries. They will aim to represent the views of as wide a range of young people as possible, by reaching out to young people within and beyond their networks to gather their opinions and views.

Selection procedure?

Members of the Youth Sounding Board were selected via an open call for applications. Applicants could apply as individuals, or be nominated by a youth organisation. Shortlisted candidates were interviewed, before the final selection of 25 members was confirmed. You can find out more about the application procedure in the call for candidates.