Spain

The Youth Strategy 2030, approved on 17 May 2022 by the Council of Ministers, is the current framework upon which youth policy in Spain is based. It was developed by the Institute for Youth (INJUVE) under the Ministry of Social Rights and Agenda 2030. The strategy is to be implemented through three triennial action plans: 2022-2024, 2025-2027, and 2028-2030.

Published on October 25, 2023
Updated on February 20, 2024

Definition of youth

There is no official indication of the age range "youth" includes, but the Youth Strategy 2030 is aimed at 15-29 year olds, and according to the EU Youth Wiki, most Spanish policies and public organisations addressing youth also focus on this age range.

Definition 1
15 - 29 years

Source: Youth Strategy 2030 2022

Definition 2

Voting Rights

Majority age
18 years
Voting age
18 years
Criminal responsibility
15 years

Candidacy age

Lower House
18 years
Upper House
18 years
President
--- (tbc)

Marriage & Gender

Without parental consent
Female
18 years
Male
18 years
With parental consent
Female
16 years
Male
16 years

Source: UNSD, UNDESA, ILGA

Is same-sex marriage legalized?
Female
Yes
Male
Yes

Source: UNSD, UNDESA, ILGA

Are other genders recognised?
Yes
self-determination model in some regions, compulsory medical diagnosis in others

Policy & Legislation

Is there a national youth policy?
Yes

The Youth Strategy 2030, approved on 17 May 2022 by the Council of Ministers, is the current framework upon which youth policy in Spain is based. It was developed by the Institute for Youth (INJUVE) under the Ministry of Social Rights and Agenda 2030. The strategy is to be implemented through three triennial action plans: 2022-2024, 2025-2027, and 2028-2030.

This youth strategy is based on ten specific axes and two transversal axes:

  • AXIS 1: Education and training
  • AXIS 2: Employment and entrepreneurship
  • AXIS 3 Emancipation, housing, and birth rate
  • AXIS 4: Comprehensive health and quality of life
  • AXIS 5: Care economy and inclusion policies
  • AXIS 6: Participation and volunteering
  • AXIS 7: Mobility: emigration and return
  • AXIS 8: Rural issues
  • AXIS 9: Knowledge management on youth reality and services
  • AXIS 10: Youth governance and institutional cooperation
  • AXIS 11: Young women and equality
  • AXIS 12: Environment and sustainability

There is no comprehensive national youth law, but there are youth laws in 12 of the 17 autonomous regions.

Public Institutions

Is there a governmental authority that is primarily responsible for youth?
Yes

Most youth-related actions in Spain are carried out by autonomous regions and local bodies, according to the EU Youth Wiki. On a national scale, the Institute for Youth (INJUVE) - a public body that is part of the Ministry of Social Rights and the 2030 Agenda� is the centre of youth policy in Spain. According to INJUVE, their main objectives are to promote:

  • Equal opportunities for young people;
  • The free and effective participation of youth in the political, social, economic and cultural development of Spain; and
  • Collaboration with the remaining ministerial departments and other public administrations, whose activities affect this sector of the population.

INJUVE works closely with ministries, youth organisations, municipalities and the Spanish Youth Council (CJE).

Youth & Representation

Does the country have a national youth organization or association?
Yes

The Spanish Youth Council (CJE) was established in 1983 through Law 18/1983 and is currently a platform for 60 youth organisations, including regional youth councils. CJE defines itself as a forum for the coordination, communication, training and cooperation of organisations that comprise the youth association movement. Its main objective is to foster the participation of youth in the political, social, economic and cultural development of Spain.

The CJE is a member of the European Youth Forum.

Youth work

Is youth work a formally recognised profession?
No

As described in Chapter 13 of The history of youth work in Europe - Volume 6 (2018), published by the Council of Europe and European Commission, youth work is not officially recognised as a profession in Spain. The chapter states that the lack of a professional status for youth work can be partly attributed to insufficient political commitment; other factors can be traced back to societal structures and culture. A significant fraction of the work that is typically done by youth workers has traditionally been done by the family or the Catholic church.

However, according to the EU Youth Wiki, youth work - or social work with a focus on youth - and corresponding training opportunities still exist, with a large number of these workers acquiring their skills in the voluntary sector.

As stated in the Council of Europe's Country Report on Youth Work (n.d.) for Spain, the limited development of social policies referring to family and youth has had a negative impact on the formulation of policy strategies concerned with legitimising the area of youth work.

Budget & Spending

Does the national youth policy have a dedicated budget?
Unclear

The Youth Strategy 2030 will be implemented through three triennial action plans - 2022-2024, 2025-2027 and 2028-2030 - which also outline funding. However, it has not been possible to verify budget allocations for the initial action plan or to confirm its approval.

The Action Plan 2014-2016 in support of the Youth Strategy 2020 had a budget of EUR 2.9 billion (USD 3.1 billion). According to the EU Youth Wiki, 90% of that budget was allocated to Axis 2 "Employment and entrepreneurship". The confirmation of the Action Plan 2017-2020 could also not be verified.

The 2022 budget for the Institute for Youth (INJUVE) was EUR 52.5 million (USD 52.4 million) in 2022.

Contextual Figures

Liberal Democracy Index
873
Youth Progress Index
85.6

Economic Indicators

GDP per capita
$30103.51
Human Development Index
0.905
Gini coefficient
34.9

Sources

See all sources (10)

Updates

  • Update 22.06.2024: