Generation In-Between

Authors: Rainer Gries, Eva Tamara Asboth, Christina Krakovsky
Publisher: ERSTE Foundation, Vienna
Content: 88 pages
ISBN: 978-3-902673-08-4
Year: 2016

The Children of the Balkan Wars: Getting to Know a Crucial Generation for Europe

All across Europe one will find members of a generation born into the agony and aporia of the socialist societies of the 1980s. Those who grew up in the Yugoslavia of the 1980s and early 1990s, torn by conflict and crises, can testify first-hand to the horrors of the Balkan Wars. The militant violence that these children and young people endured existentially outweighs any experiences of the social and political upheaval that occurred at that time.

Today, they are young adults who are struggling to meet the challenges of their present and future lives – in the societies that emerged from Yugoslavia and in Austria. In the years to come, following the current crises in Europe, members of this generation will be faced with the task of continuing, intensifying and further shaping – or possibly even initiating – the process of integrating their countries into Europe, even though the European idea is now met with scepticism and indifference by many young adults, particularly in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe.

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Florian Bauer

Director Social Finance, Sustainability and Innovation
Since 2023, Florian Bauer has been responsible for social finance, sustainability and social innovation at ERSTE Foundation. Prior to this role, Florian worked in the NGO & Social Entrepreneurship sector for more than 13 years. He led the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), an international multilateral NGO that works to accelerate market-based deployment of renewable energy and energy efficient systems in developing countries, and was Managing Director & COO of the Impact Hub Vienna. From 2020-2023, Florian established strategic alliances with key partners and helped to create innovative semantic technology solutions at Semantic Web Company (SWC), a leading IT company in semantic AI solutions.