The EU is made of, for and by its citizens! In the context of current challenges (Brexit, populism, climate change…), engaging citizens in discussions on the European Union and its future has never been more important. In recent years, Europe has been faced with a growing distrust towards its institutions, which are seen as unable or unwilling to truly respond to the concerns of its citizens. This has created a disconnection between the Union and its citizens, becoming the target of a new wave of populism, which challenges the EU’s legitimacy. In this context, towns and regions are crucial in empowering citizens to be active players and in forming strong links between the EU and its citizens. Cooperation, tolerance and volunteering are key tools to better understand the role of the European Union in our lives, discover our own added value to the European project and thus become better informed, more self-conscious and proud European citizens.
The workshop aims to provide EU beneficiaries with an opportunity to exchange best practices on how they foster active European citizenship and promote EU values. The lively stories and testimonies of successful projects supported by the Europe for Citizens programme will demonstrate how their results contribute to a more inclusive and democratic Europe. Moreover, the H2020 RECONNECT Project, which brings together 18 leading academic institutions across Europe, will present some insights on the current division between the EU and its citizens and suggest some ways forward.
These initiatives intend to foster a democratic environment in which every citizen has a say, while seeking to inspire and shape future debates on the European integration project.
This workshop will allow citizens to have their voice heard and reduce the perceived “distance” between citizens and the EU level of governance that is so often criticised by Eurosceptics. Topics such as intercultural dialogue, debate on the future of Europe, democracy, volunteering and how citizens can promote solidarity at the local and EU level will be addressed.
Join our workshop and get inspired by the projects presented promoting a more inclusive and democratic EU!
Elena Dellapiana, Evangelista Leuzzi, Chiara Lucchini, Antonella Valmorbida, Jan Wouters
Building SQUARE - Brussels Convention Centre, Room 214+216.