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The global securitisation of youth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Mayssoun Sukarieh, Stuart Tannock

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)854-870
Number of pages17
JournalThird World Quarterly
Issue number5
Early online date7 Sep 2017
Accepted/In press15 Aug 2017
E-pub ahead of print7 Sep 2017


King's Authors


This article looks critically at the new global youth, peace and security agenda, that has been marked by the passage of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2250 in December 2015. It argues that this agenda needs to be situated within the broader context of the securitisation of development, and that the increasing interest in youth as a security subject and actor is shaped by three overlapping sets of global security concerns: the concept of the youth bulge is a euphemism for the problem of growing surplus populations worldwide; the ideal of youth as peacebuilders is a model for eliciting youth support for the current global social and economic order; and the spectre of globally networked youth being radicalised by extremist groups has legitimated joint state and private sector projects that are taking an increasingly active role intervening in the online lives of young people around the world. The article draws on an analysis of a collection of core documents that form the heart of the global youth and security agenda; and it argues for the need for greater critical reflexivity in considering the growing attention being paid to youth as a social category in global development and policy discourse.

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