Young People, Non-religion and Citizenship: Insights from the Youth on Religion Study

Peter J. Hemming, Nicola Madge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Non-religion and unbelief are under-researched phenomena in the social sciences but the growing significance of the worldwide non-religious population is leading to more interest in this previously neglected topic. However, with the exception of a handful of studies, little attention has yet been directed towards non-religious youth, despite the emergence of a substantial body of research on youth and religion, and ongoing concerns about the conduct of young people more generally. This article draws on mixed-method data from the British Youth On Religion study to explore the responses of participants identifying as religious ‘nones’. The analysis focuses specifically on young people as citizens through their relationships with wider society, including the broader meaning of non-religious identity, views on morality and values, and approaches to, and relations with, religious others. As such, the article speaks to wider debates about youth, citizenship and community cohesion, as well as non-religion and unbelief.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-214
JournalYOUNG: Nordic Journal of Youth Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 17 Aug 2017

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