Hoofdstuk in The history of youth work in Europe and its relevance for youth policy today.
Youth work in the Netherlands goes back a long way and since the 1970s has taken on a rather strong professional image. During the last decades, it went through some hard times, but recently it has undergone a revival and revaluation. (Griensven & Smeets, 2003). The first section of this paper is about how the characteristics of the Dutch affect social work and youth work concepts. The second part discusses the Dutch framework for youth work: definition, fields of activities, core tasks and the ambiguous relationship between youth work and social work. The third section deals with the history of youth work. The paper concludes with a reflection on the future directions that youth work could take. The article is based on Dutch historical
research, some by the author, and the author’s involvement in youth work, both as a youth worker and editor- in- chief of the semi-scientific journal Jeugd en samenleving.