YouthScore is both an engagement tool and a metric to evaluate streets, places and neighbourhoods based on their youth friendliness. The tool uses quantitative and qualitative methods to assess criteria that youth identify as important features of safe, welcoming, sustainable, and enjoyable urban places. It was developed for youth, by youth based on principles of youth participation & co-creation of solutions for better urban planning and child well-being outcomes.
Why create a youthscore?
Youth are an important segment of urban populations and will represent 60% of urban dwellers worldwide by 2030 (Source: United Nations), but are underrepresented in planning, design and decision-making processes. The purpose of the YouthScore is to identify youth priorities and perspectives for creating better urban places for all, and to build critical skills such as complex problem-solving, collaboration, communication, design, data collection and analysis.
Using the youthscore
The YouthScore index grows with continued use and has been piloted by hundreds of youth ages 8-18 in Ontario, China, and Frankfurt, Germany. First, youth develop and add to the variables and weights of the YouthScore by completing a pre-survey. Then, using the YouthScore on-site survey tool, they investigate and evaluate the youth-friendliness of a place or street through a data collection process. Finally, participants present their data and create design solutions to raise the YouthScore of their place or street.