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Europe for Citizens (2007-13)

This decision establishes the programme 'Europe for Citizens' for the period 2007-13. This programme is intended to continue, with certain proposed innovations, the activities begun under the 2004-06 programme. In order to ensure that citizens are actively involved in the process of European integration, it proposes to create the conditions for bringing the people of Europe together and to increase the sense of a European identity.

ACT

Decision No 1904/2006/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2006 establishing for the period 2007 to 2013 the programme ‘Europe for Citizens’ to promote active European citizenship [See amending act(s)].

SUMMARY

With a view to actively involving the public in the process of European integration, this programme is intended to encourage cooperation between citizens and citizens' organisations in various countries. They can thus come together and take action in a European environment that respects their diversity.

Before publishing this decision, the Commission undertook an extensive public consultation from December 2004 to February 2005 and then organised a consultative forum on 3 and 4 February 2005. The online consultation resulted in more than a thousand responses, 700 of which were from organisations and some 300 from individuals. This programme for 2007-13 follows on from the Community action programme to promote active European citizenship (2004-06).

Objectives

The programme’s general objectives are as follows:

  • giving citizens the opportunity to interact and participate in constructing an ever closer Europe that is open to the world, united in and enriched through its cultural diversity;
  • developing a European identity among European citizens based on recognised common values, history and culture;
  • fostering a sense of ownership of the European Union (EU) among its citizens;
  • enhancing tolerance and mutual understanding between European citizens and respecting and promoting cultural and linguistic diversity, while contributing to intercultural dialogue.

Its specific objectives are to:

  • bring together people from local communities across Europe to share and exchange experiences, opinions and values, to learn from history and to build for the future;
  • foster action, debate and reflection related to European citizenship and democracy through cooperation between civil society organisations at European level;
  • make the idea of Europe more tangible for its citizens by promoting and celebrating Europe's values and achievements, while preserving the memory of its past;
  • encourage the balanced integration of citizens and civil society organisations from all participating countries, contributing to intercultural dialogue and bringing to the fore both Europe’s diversity and its unity, with particular attention to activities with Member States that have recently joined the EU.

The programme’s objectives must be reflected in four types of action:

Action 1: “Active citizens for Europe”

This action involves citizens directly by means of town-twinning activities and citizens’ projects to debate European issues and develop mutual understanding through direct participation. In order to improve town-twinning and citizens' projects, it is also necessary to develop support measures to exchange best practices, to pool experiences between stakeholders at local and regional levels and to develop new skills, for example through training. As an indication, at least 45 % of the total budget allocated to the programme will be devoted to this action.

Action 2: “Active civil society in Europe”

Approximately 31 % of the total budget allocated to the programme will be devoted to this action, which comprises:

  • structural support for European public policy research organisations (think-tanks);
  • structural support for civil society organisations at European level;
  • support for projects initiated by civil society organisations at local, regional and national levels.

Action 3: “Together for Europe”

Approximately 10 % of the total budget allocated to the programme will be devoted to this action, which supports:

  • high-profile events, such as commemorations of historical events, artistic events, awards to highlight major accomplishments and Europe-wide conferences;
  • studies, surveys and opinion polls;
  • information and dissemination tools.

Action 4: “Active European Remembrance”

Approximately 4 % of the total budget allocated to the programme will be devoted to this action, which comprises projects to preserve active European remembrance. These are mainly projects designed to preserve the main sites and archives associated with the mass deportations and former concentration camps and to commemorate the victims of mass exterminations and mass deportations that took place during the Nazi and Stalinist regimes.

Participation

The programme is open to the participation of the following countries, in accordance with the general terms and conditions for their participation in Community programmes:

  • Member States;
  • EFTA States that are party to the EEA Agreement;
  • candidate countries benefiting from a pre-accession strategy;
  • countries of the western Balkans.

The programme applies to the following:

  • local authorities and organisations;
  • European public policy research organisations (think-tanks);
  • citizens’ groups and other civil society organisations, such as non-governmental organisations, platforms, networks, associations, federations, trade unions, educational institutions and organisations active in the field of voluntary work or amateur sport.

Management, budget and evaluation

The Commission is assisted by a committee and must adopt most of the implementation measures in accordance with the management procedure. This includes selection decisions related to operating grants, multi-annual twinning agreements and high-profile events. With regard to other selection decisions, the Commission has the obligation to inform the committee and the European Parliament of the decisions adopted. The proposed budget for the implementation of this programme is EUR 215 million. Approximately 10 % of the total allocated budget covers administrative expenditure.

The Commission shall submit an interim evaluation report on the implementation of the programme no later than 31 December 2010. A communication on the continuation of the programme shall be presented no later than 31 December 2011. The ex-post evaluation report shall be submitted no later than 31 December 2015.

REFERENCES

ActEntry into force – Date of expiryDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Decision No 1904/2006/EC

1.1.2007 – 31.12.2013

-

OJ L 378 of 27.12.2006

Amending act(s)Entry into force – Date of expiryDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Decision No 1358/2008/EC

31.12.2008 – 31.12.2013

-

OJ L 350 of 30.12.2008

RELATED ACTS

Communication from the Commission of 9 March 2004 - Making citizenship Work: fostering European culture and diversity through programmes for Youth, Culture, Audiovisual and Civic Participation [COM(2004) 154 final – Official Journal C 122 of 30.4.2004].

Last updated: 27.01.2009

See also

  • For further information, please visit the European Commission website: Citizenship
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