Julia Jacukowicz, a second year UCG student, has received a second prize for the Hans Adriaansens Student Awards through the Ecolas (European Consortium of Liberal Arts and Sciences) call for proposals.
The current award had the following proposition: "the current student generation has a great deal of hope but also concerns for the future of our societies. While you have a deep desire to make the world a better place, sometimes you feel that your views are not taken seriously or that your potential contribution is dismissed by older generations or those in power".
The topic of this year’s ECOLAS award was titled Europe’s Youth, Its Hopes and Discontents.
Julia's essay focused on disinformation and propaganda in the media, including social media, and how it impacts European democracies.
Drawing upon her own experience as a Polish national, she explained the role of the news fatigue and ‘Us vs Them’ thinking in the fluctuations between democracy and authoritarianism.
She has also highlighted the positive aspects of social media and the role of the youth in addressing threats to democracy
Here’s a little quote from her work:
Political and societal transformations begin with ideas and, ironically, ideas can be more robust than authoritarian regimes. My generation is already equipped with those ideas, as well as powerful means of spreading them. When you think of it, the digitally connected world is perfect for things as contagious as tolerance, freedom, equality and other democratic values. The opportunities for inspiring others are bigger than ever.
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