Renew Europe hails ‘unprecedented’ democratic exercise, as the Conference on the Future of Europe opens for debate.
Today the co-Chairs of the Conference on the Future of Europe, a Renew Europe initiative to promote grass roots reform of the EU, have launched the citizens’ digital platform, a unique interactive and multilingual platform for Europeans to join in the debate on the future of Europe, ahead of the formal launch of the conference on the 9th May.
Through the platform, everyone can share and debate ideas, as well as organise and participate in events. The key ideas and recommendations from the platform will be used as input for the European citizens' panels and the plenaries, so that participants’ views on the European Union weigh in on the Conference’s conclusions. Renew Europe will plan a series of events to accompany the Conference, including through an online consultative platform, over the coming months.
Renew Europe President, Dacian Cioloş, said:
‘The real test of this democratic exercise is to get as many people as possible actively engaged. This exercise in dialogue with citizens is unprecedented in the history of Europe. We must live up to this ambition; the success of the Conference on the Future of Europe depends on it. We are counting on the participation of the citizens and we politicians will have to know how to take this word into account.’
‘I see this platform as a flywheel for the whole Conference,’ explains MEP Guy Verhofstadt (Open Vld, BE) who is co-chair of the Executive Board, ‘What we’re doing is draw on all of the energy in European debate – all of the hopes and fears, criticism and constructive ideas that people may have – and turn it into real political momentum. Such a two-track approach, with a wholly open digital platform and citizens’ panels, has never been tried before.’