Voting rights for older children and civic education

Michael Merry, Anders Schinkel

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The issue of voting rights for older children has been high on the political and philosophical agenda for quite some time now, and not without reason. Aside from principled moral and philosophical reasons why it is an important matter, many economic, environmental, and political issues are currently being decided—sometimes through indecision—that greatly impact the future of today's children. Past and current generations of adults have, arguably, mortgaged their children's future, and this makes the question whether (some) children should be granted the right to vote all the more pressing. Should (some) children be given the right to vote? Moreover, does the answer to this question depend on civic education, on whether children have been deliberately prepared for the exercise of that right? These are the questions that will occupy us in this article. Our answer to the first will be that older children—children roughly between 14 and 16 years of age—ought to be given the right to vote.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-214
Number of pages18
JournalPublic Affairs Quarterly
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • voting rights, children, franchise, civic education


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