As the world finds itself in crisis mode, the European Union has been seriously put to the test. A test of its unity and its leaders as much as of its citizens. Among them, prominently, are young people who are suddenly faced with uncertainty and unprecedented events, be it a pandemic, a war on Europe’s doorstep, or one of the many side-effects.

To better understand young Europeans’ feelings and perceptions in these times, Debating Europe spoke to 30 students aged 18-30 from 15 countries in a series of focus group discussions. We asked them how they assess the EU’s performance in times of crisis and whether they feel hopeful for the Union’s future.

Ahead of the 2024 European Parliamentary elections, the young participants debated contested concepts of identity and unity and told us about their expectations from decision-makers. This report summarizes their perspectives.

Download the report as a PDF here.

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s)only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Commission. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.