According to a survey conducted by the Faculty of Political Sciences in Zagreb, one quarter of young people in Croatia are politically illiterate.
The survey was conducted in March this year among 1,122 final-year secondary school students in 59 schools across the country.
Commenting on the poor results of students in three-year vocational programmes, who accounted for 23 percent of the respondents, Profesor Berto Salaj said that "society has decided that they do not need to be politically literate." That, in turn, means that as future voters in elections they don’t need to know anything about political processes, institutions or parties, which is a serious social problem, he said while presenting the results of the recent survey.
These results prove that society has done almost nothing to implement civic education, even though some of its aspects have been included across different subjects, but that is not enough, Salaj said.
The survey results were presented by Jelena Matić-Bojić and Nikola Baketa from the Institute for Social Research.
Noting that young people often do not know basic political facts, Baketa said that, for example, they do not know which countries are members of the EU or when Croatia joined NATO. He underlined that the survey shows that young people do not understand basic political notions, they do not trust political institutions, but trust the army and science.
Even though most young people get their information from social networks and news websites, they trust them the least.
Noting that the survey dealt with political knowledge, prejudices and stereotypes, values, media literacy, civic culture and habits, the results show that young people’s socio political views were slightly more democratic than in 2015.
One third of young people consider homosexuality an illness or disorder. Attitudes towards gender equality were a little more progressive, although one-quarter of respondents are still indecisive about this aspect.
On a positive note, 90 percent of young people can imagine having a friend from a different race, religion or nationality.