What do young people do at night?
Americans can make assumptions and develop fears about young people who gather in public spaces at night. Or we can borrow wisdom from research conducted in Montréal, Hanoi, Mexico City and Paris.
In this instance, young people helped conduct the research and author the report.
Montréal Nocturne [PDF, in French] is the result of impressive fieldwork by Tryspaces, the University of Montréal, the Montréal Youth Council and Organisme R.E.s.P.I.R.E. In collaboration, the partners conducted nearly five-hundred hours of observation of almost 8,000 users of Montréal parks. Interviewers met with 63 young people as well as community leaders and workers.
This is one of the largest qualitative studies about social behavior of young people in Montréal at night.
“There is a real need in terms of the lack of public space for young people in Montreal, which can sometimes create issues with the rest of the population,” says Thi Thanh Hien Pham, Université du Québec à Montréal.
We know a great deal about human behavior by day. By overlooking human behavior at night, we amputate half of a city’s existence. When it comes to young people at night, Montréal Nocturne offers twenty-eight recommendations that could be adopted by any city or town, anywhere.