Developmental Needs of Adolescents in the Online Lifeworld in the Context of Youth Work

Dejan Todorovic*, Stijn Sieckelinck, Willeke Manders, Greetje Timmerman, Josje van der Linden

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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The online lifeworld gives adolescents various opportunities to meet their developmental needs. Not all young people benefit from these opportunities. They encounter negative experiences, have difficulties fulfilling their needs and engage in risky and harmful behaviours in the online lifeworld. This poses challenges for Dutch youth work professionals, as little is known about the digital lives of Dutch adolescents and the challenges they encounter when meeting their developmental needs in the online lifeworld. In this qualitative study, a photovoice method was used to collect screenshots from adolescents (N = 175) concerning their experiences and needs in the online lifeworld. Six types of developmental needs in the online lifeworld were distinguished. The article concludes that understanding how adolescents use online affordances to fulfil their developmental needs is a starting point for all youth work professionals in providing adequate support to adolescents in the online lifeworld.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-182
Number of pages18
JournalEuropean Social Work Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1-Jun-2023


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