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Celebrating Europe! - 50th Anniversary of the Treaty of RomeSkip language selection bar (shortcut key=2) 01/02/2008
EUROPA > 50th Anniversary > News and media > Article

Talking Europe, past and future

Talking Europe, past and future


The EU has been keen to involve the public in its 50th birthday celebrations. And in events all over Europe, people are grasping this opportunity to have their say on the European project.

Popular debates have been held in a number of cities including Malta, Riga and Rome, exploring the values of the EU's founding fathers and how these stand up in the modern world. In Lille, 3 000 people came together for a keynote debate on Europe, involving personalities such as French actress Sarah Biasini and former Commission president Jacques Delors. Household names such as Greenpeace and the French SOS Racisme were also present to discuss environment, democracy, social justice and other key issues for the EU.

The two-week long London Festival of Europe brought together academics, writers and artists from across Europe and beyond to debate with the  public on many and varied European questions such as the future shape of the EU and European identity and values.

In Italy, Rome, Turin and Lecce hosted Europedia - a novel experience that takes spectators on a special interactive journey. And in Stockholm, a 4‑day seminar enabled the public to share their views on current European affairs with researchers, politicians and business leaders.

Internet, radio and TV programmes proved another key channel for communicating and sharing ideas. Commission representatives took part in Q&A‑style web chats in Slovenia and guested on popular radio shows in Nicosia, Ljubljana and Dublin. In Barcelona, 500,000 listeners tuned in to leading radio news show El Matí de Catalunya Ràdio for an interview with commission president José Manuel Barroso and his foreign policy chief Javier Solana, touching on hot topics such as climate change, energy and language use in the EU.

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