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Active European citizenship (2004-2006)

The purpose of this programme is to establish a basic instrument for awarding grants to promote active European citizenship over a three-year period (2004-2006). The programme sets out to support bodies working in the field of active European citizenship and to promote activities in that field.


Council Decision 2004/100/EC of 26 January 2004 establishing a Community action programme to promote active European citizenship (civic participation).


The European Union is keen to see its citizens to play an active part in the implementation of Community policies. In line with the principle of subsidiarity, European citizenship - as established by the EC Treaty - complements national citizenship and does not replace it.

Back in 1999 the Tampere European Council stressed that an area of freedom, security and justice should be based on the principles of transparency and democratic control, involving an open dialogue with civil society.

In its Declaration No 23, the Nice European Council recognised the need to improve and monitor the democratic legitimacy and transparency of the Union institutions, in order to bring them closer to the citizens of the Member States.

For a number of years the European Union has supported active European citizenship through budget lines in Part A (administrative appropriations) of the Commission budget. At present there is no legal base for awarding grants in this field, a gap that this programme sets out to fill.

The aim of the Community programme set out in this Decision is to contribute to the operating costs of organisations working in the field of active European citizenship and to promote measures which help achieve the Union's objectives in that field.

The programme covers the following bodies in particular:

  • "Our Europe" Association;
  • Jean Monnet house;
  • Robert Schuman house;
  • Platform of European social NGOs;
  • European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE);
  • Association of the Councils of State and Supreme Administrative Jurisdictions of the European Union.

It also supports the ongoing work programme of a series of bodies pursuing aims of general European interest related to active European citizenship, and action in that field by NGOs, associations and federations of European interest or cross-industry trade-unions.

The chief activities to be financed are meetings and debates between citizens on themes of European interest, discussion and education projects and the dissemination of information on Community action.

To award grants under this programme the Commission will publish calls for proposals. An exception to this rule will be made for 2004 and 2005 (see the list in the Annex).

For the purposes of monitoring and evaluating the programme, the Commission will present an activity report to Parliament and the Council by 31 December 2007, based among other things on an external report - to be made available no later than 31 December 2006 - appraising the coherence of the programme and the effectiveness of its execution.

Promoting Active European Citizenship (2007-13)

The ' Citizens for Europe ' programme aims to promote active European citizenship.


ActEntry into force - Date of expiryDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Decision 2004/100/EC [adoption: consultation CNS/2003/0116]5.2.2004-OJ L 30 of 4.2.2004
Last updated: 30.04.2007
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