Future of Europe: Bringing more union into the European Union
Period of implementation: September 2018 – October 2019
Euroscepticism, democratic deficit and low electoral turnout are affecting all EU countries. Across the EU, we are witnessing extensive protests or forms of active citizenship, ranging from pro rule of law protests in Romania and Bulgaria, recent anti-populism and pro EU in Germany or anti-austerity movements in Greece. In this context, how can we use most of these civic manifestations to debate the future of the EU? These movements require special attention for a proper understanding of the values their supporters stand for.
This overall trend is doubled also by another worrying phenomenon: disinformation, fake news and trolling are most visible during the electoral campaigns, in an attempt to hamper with EU elections, undermine pro-European values, and promote nationalistic and xenophobic messages. This scenario is damaging for the EU 2019 elections that may record another all-time low voter turnout.
The project “A new narrative for Europe: Bringing more union into the European Union” aims to translate the messages from the grass root level and connect them to the EU public policies, favoring a more bottom-up approach, closer to EU citizens. There is an urgent need to raise awareness and know how among youth on the importance of EU 2019 elections and empowering them with the needed tools to gain momentum and influence over EU’s direction through interactive and user friendly methods.
Furthermore, we intend to document and address the protests as a new form of democratic participation that could be further used as an opportunity to re-shape European identity across borders, combat new populist trends and increase voter turnout.
The main outcomes of the project are:
- Organising interactive online debate competitions on EU elections and Video Storytelling with youths and activists focusing on EU challenges (Euroscepticism, democratic deficit, EU elections).
- Organising 4 “town hall meetings” complemented by 1 transnational event on the future of Europe and the new forms of active citizenship;
- Elaborating position papers and key recommendations based on the findings during the project that will be disseminated at EU level.
The project targets youths, students, activists from Romania, Bulgaria, Germany and Greece, with an interest in the recent street protests and demonstrations and engaged in the public debate that can further create appropriate mechanisms to combat the lack of trust in the EU and Euroscepticism.