What’s your vision for the future of Europe? The EU’s Conference on the Future of Europe is a pan-European consultation with citizens on the sort of reforms and future direction they want the 27-member bloc to take. It’s billed as a completely open debate, with “no taboos” in terms of treaty change or reforms, and will run until Spring 2022.
How can Europe “build back better” from COVID-19? This was one of the topics that came up during our 100 European Voices focus groups with young people from across the EU. Participants told us they thought the EU in ten years should be better prepared for future pandemics, with proper coordination; they hoped it would be fairer and more (gender) equal; be greener, more sustainable and self-reliant, less focused on (economic) growth, and be more open to new ideas and young minds.
To get a policymaker perspective, we put this question to members of the European Parliament from all political groups. Expand the cards below to find out what politicians think of the EU’s response to the pandemic:
A Europe with a recovered, more green and digital economy, in the vanguard of innovation. I hope that in 10 years’ time, we will have a more self-conscious, less guilt-ridden, determined Europe, that values its way of living, its democratic achievements and the Enlightenment spirit of humanity, progress and co-operation. I am a strong advocate for a stronger geo-strategic position for the EU and its Member States with less emphasis on short term interests of individual Member States. We need to be able to take stronger positions internationally, also towards major powers such as China and Russia, whom we meet as adversaries on so many topics.
I am a friend of Europe. And I wish that the European continent will continue to exist as a union of independent national states that work together in appropriate areas. Similar to how the European Economic Community used to function. I wish for a Europe that is not pushed by an unrestrained bureaucracy into becoming a monstrous superstate.
The EU is successively stripping its citizens of their freedoms and tries to shape its people according to self-defined human rights which are not found in any convention. Freedom of opinion, freedom of religion, and freedom of expression are being thrown overboard in an attempt to push a moral agenda. I disagree with that development. I want Europe to remain the continent of freedom, in the way it has been for several hundreds of years. Sadly, the EU has been going in the wrong direction, but I have a lot of hope for the Eastern member states who still value their freedoms. It is a long way to go, but perhaps, in 10 years’ time my dream can become realised.
Curious to know what the EU might look like ten years after the pandemic? We’ve put together some facts and figures in the infographic below (click for a bigger version).
What should Europe look like 10 years after the pandemic? What’s your vision for the future of Europe? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!