Recognizing Everyday Youth Agency: Advocating for a Reflexive Practice in Everyday International Relations

Amanda Beattie, Gemma Bird

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article intervenes in the ongoing discussion of Everyday international relations (IR). It draws on the discourse of epistemic injustice to explore the discussions of emerging research on everyday childhood. The article draws on a series of research visits, between 2017 and 2019, along the so-called Balkan Route attending to the emerging influence of children in the Greek Reception and Identification Centre, on the island of Samos. The article references the emerging discourses of “field” research within the discipline of IR, noting the dynamic nature of such ventures and the role of a reflexive practice therein. Using open-ended interviews, research diaries, and author observations, the article provides a detailed description of the role that education nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) on the island play in supporting child refugees, while opening up spaces of education, solidarity, and community building. It argues for the inclusion of children, as agents, within the discussions of Everyday IR to redress the erasure of children’s lived experience within everyday IR. The potential role of adults in this process is acknowledged and the article puts forward an alternative understanding of the adult/child relationship paying attention to the dynamics of power, the need for reflexive and critical listening, to hear the stories and ideas of children and young people, on their own terms aware that the article itself falls prey to some of the articulated challenges. It hopes to ignite a conversation beyond the (potential) central role for children in Everyday IR imagining their role within knowledge production.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
JournalGlobal Studies Quarterly
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 23 Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

© The Author(s) (2022). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the International Studies Association.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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