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Stagnation and Drift in the Western Balkans

The Challenges of Political, Economic and Social Change

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Edited By Claire Gordon, Marko Kmezic and Jasmina Opardija-Susnjar

This volume allows a new generation of scholars, from the Balkans and beyond, to shed light on some of the struggles the region faces. The combination of post-communist and post-conflict transition, together with the current economic and financial crisis, pose difficult challenges for the Western Balkans.
What is the state of democracy in the region? Are the countries of the Western Balkans stuck somewhere between authoritarianism and genuine democracy? What are the remaining obstacles to state building? What effect has the crisis had on young people in the Western Balkans?
These are some of the questions the authors of this volume seek to answer. The studies look at different countries and combine methods from various disciplines ranging from political science, history, economics and law to sociology, anthropology and cultural studies.

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Dragan Stanojevic and Smiljka Tomanovic - Getting on their Feet? Changes in Economic Status of Young People in Serbia between 2003 and 2011 - 245

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1 Prepared within the framework of the Regional Research Promotion Pro- gramme in the Western Balkans (RRPP), which is run by the University of Fribourg upon a mandate of the Swiss Agency for Development and Coopera- tion, SDC, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. The views expressed in the chapter are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the SDC and the University of Fribourg. 'UDJDQ6WDQRMHYLþDQG6PLOMND7RPDQRYLþ Getting on their Feet? Changes in Economic Status of Young People in Serbia between 2003 and 20111 Cultural and structural constraints on the individualization of young people in Serbia have become a part of current academic discourse. 2XULQWHQWLRQLVWRSUHVHQWWKHH[WHQWWRZKLFKWKHÀQDQFLDODQG housing situation of young people and their independence from their parents determine this trend. This chapter is based on the compari- son of data from surveys carried out on representative national sam- ples of young people in Serbia in 2003 and 2011. The analysis aims at capturing trends over time, as well as the effects of institutional mechanisms that provide structural constraints or opportunities for young people’s agency. Education and employment are considered to be the main resources for economic status, independence and agency, which are also dependent on structural factors. Since we aimed at exploring inter-relation of structures and agency, we ana- lyzed education and employment statuses of young people, but also LQUHODWLRQWRWKHLUSHUFHSWLRQVVWUDWHJLHVDQGSODQV7KHNH\ÀQG- LQJVDUHWKDWLQ\RXQJSHRSOHLQ6HUELDZHUHÀQDQFLDOO\DQG economically dependent on their families to a high degree, and that there was almost no change in comparison to their...

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