The Concept of Shared Future: Role of Youth in Unifying Nations across the border

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Ms. Palwasha Nawaz

The world is amid challenges ranging from regional conflicts, terrorism, and social disruptions to economic downturns, unequal development, and climate change. These global challenges call for a global solution with cooperation among states. Obsolete and dysfunctional principles of interaction between people are replaced by modern trends and patterns. Which offers a rationale coherence for upgrading and revising the world’s narratives and policies to keep up with the time.

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Likewise, the global structural reforms have paved the way for the states to indulge in multilateral integration in various aspects.  In this context, to collaborate in multi-dimensional ways, the role of youth under the idea of community with a shared future is pertinent to highlight in present times. As this idea has become a strong narrative in transforming and integrating the globe in more domains, the youth can play a significant role in projecting this very idea to create harmony among countries. The primary contours of the idea underpin tolerance, fair relations, mutual respect, equality, and dialectical balance. Under this concept, the students and young entrepreneurs can have an ample number of opportunities to get international exposure, scholarships, participation in cultural exchange programs, and portray a better image of their country internationally.The world is a global village now, and the interaction among people is now in more diverse ways than ever before. Through the internet, social media, and various other online platforms, the people to people contact hasincreased. The online educational and intellectual programs have made the way easy for the youth to collaborate and participate in different productive activities worldwide. Moreover, the vision of a shared future has also allowed intellectuals, academia, research centers, universities, and youngsters to get together under one platform and constructively integrate which would have a profound impact in establishinginterconnectivity patterns. In this aspect, the paper aims to highlight the role of youth in unifying nations through their innovative ideas and skills. Also, this study gives the prospects for the students to diversify their patterns of education, constructive role, and opportunities under this very narrative of community with a shared future.

Role of a Community: Unleashing the Potential of Youth

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The future of humanity relies on the young generation. The countriesthatdo not facilitate their young generation are likely to go grindinghalt in the process of social development. When the young generation tends to get associated with communal activities, they develop strong abilities or skills neededfor statesmanship. Their participationin the decision-making process is the key element in shaping a brighter future. In recent times, researchers, policymakers, diplomates,and governmentsare agreed on the view that interaction and participation of youth is a major element for robust communityadvancement. Youth engagement towards a constructive mechanism of cooperation is defined as “meaning full participation and sustained involvement of a young person in an activity, with a focus outside of him or herself “.Furthermore, in public youth engagements, the research is amid two theories that reflect the pillars of meaningful interaction of youth in the global arena. a) positive youth development theory, and b) attachment theory.

First, the youth development theory attempts to explain the foundation of creating an effective and resilient community where the youth have interaction and positive engagement with the adults’ support. In times of difficulty faced by the youth, the community will have the capacity to support youth. As the community is based on an inclusive and comprehensive vision, its role is substantial to discuss here.  In this regard, the idea of a community with a shared future will give a new boost to the existing youth communities and councils. It will allow youngsters to overcome the adversities and adopt those vision which would nourish their career and lifestyle.Second, the attachment theory revolves around the concept ofthe long-term meaning full relationships. In the past, the theory has been used in the field ofpsychology to describe the bond between the mother and the infant. This can be seen in the prism of youth and the community as well. The role of community and persistent attachment of a young person with it envisaged the same relation that is tonourish youth abilities andprovide them opportunities to enhance their potential. Having a strong view of the community with a shared future and the part of student councils would allow them to think in an outrightly new direction and also contribute tothe sustainabledevelopment of the society. When youth are allowed to freely participate, it curtails the orthodox problems of behavior. Despite feeling dis-engaged, hopeless, and undervalue, young studentseffectively participate in the process of soil advancement. According to research, student and youth who are associated with the community activities and tasks are less likely to use alcohol or drugs,drop out of college, and to get involved in any sort of anti-social or criminal activities. They hold optimistic and practical demeanors and a healthy mindset.

Shared Future: Role of Students and youth

Empowering youth, allowing them to participate, and providing them with beneficial opportunities in the community always resultsin a boon for social advancement. When the youth is engaged in multiple inclusive activities, itallowsthem to get exposure and have a focused direction to sustain. At an early stage with the assistance of the community, when studentsrealize that they can influencethe decision-making process, they eventually rise above all and come up with innovative and bright ideas. This learning and interactive process leads them to develop entrepreneurship and leadership skills.

The vision of a community with a shared future allows students to participate orinteract from different platforms and take advantage of internshipprograms. It would allow the states to collaborate and share innovative ideas through intellectual forums. The global theme aims to eradicate prejudices and build communication grounds.  It will create a coherent association among the countries and their people. Through this, a robust and standard apparatus of win-win cooperation among nations and youth can be achieved in the future. There are some prospects for the students that would help them to establish ways to unify the nation across borders:

Youth Activities under the Vision of a Shared Future:

  1. Hybrid conferences and sessions for soft skill development
  2. Interactive webinar to sparkle intellectualcuriosity among students and youth
  3. Joint academic research projects on common areas of interest
  4. Joint cultural exchange programs to create harmony
  5. Constructive ideas sharing sessions
  6. Database to access the desired study material
  7. Community’s tasks groups to accomplish mutual objectives
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All the evolving modern political values and transformed trends i.e., Belt and Road initiative (BRI) which offers a plethora of opportunities for sustainable development across and within countries vision, the idea of a community with shared future and dialogue among civilizations have allowed countries to shed the orthodox ways of interaction and move towards a new trend of greater cooperation, collaboration, and interaction. The young generation could become the pioneer to commence the collaborative activity in an emerging new pattern.  This implies huge responsibility forresearchinstitutes, universities, intellectuals, and think tanks to establish such constructive ways of interactions among the youth. In this regard, China and Pakistan have been doing remarkable efforts. A renowned Chinese university i.e.,Communication University of China (CUC)has taken the initiative of creating a network of research centers for a community with a shared future. The research centers are created in collaboration with Pakistan, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Germany, Malaysia, and South Korea.One of the research centers i.e., Pakistan Research Center jointly established by the CUC delivers for this purpose. It has initiated prominent projects including an online internship program, conferences, round table discussions, etc. Also, bringing together individuals and youngsters from different backgrounds and teaching about commonalities.

Each year, several scholarships and cultural exchange programs arebeing offered between Pakistan and China. In present times, the ratio of students has increased significantly. Both countries are hospitable and assisting each other in almost every domain.The educational and academic domain is vital for the students, trainers, and teachers. The aim of organizing such cultural events and scholarship programs is to make the youth and people to understand the rich culture and promote people-to-people contact. In this aspect, the research centers established in other countries allow this integrated network to offer more youth scholarship programs and enhance people to people connectivity. The international interaction would allow youth to come up with innovative ideas, eliminate prejudices, and bring people together to promote peace and harmony.

By Ms. Palwasha Nawaz, is Deputy Director,

Pakistan Research Center for a Community with Shared Future, Communication University of China (Beijing), China

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