The EU as a Peace Project in 2040
The search for a truly citizen-centered Europe can only be a joint efforts of many: the EU bodies, the EU member states, but also civil society organisations, local governments and local citizens’ initiatives can and must contribute.
We are all aware of the problems the EU is facing: the democratic deficit, the rise of populism and illiberal tendencies, the migration policy, climate change, quite different interpretations of what Europe should stand for and what the European values are or should be. But also cyberspace, dilemmas on how to balance security measures with civil liberties, management of technological progress, the gaps between highly-educated and less-educated people, between urban and rural communities, between generations, the ones who profit from the globalization and the ones less fortunate who struggle with poverty.
It is to a large extent inevitable that such challenges and dilemmas exist and that often elements of inequality are at hand. Inequality fuels conflicts. The key question is how the deal with such situations, how to make the search for inclusivity and common ground a crucial recurrent feature in the discussions on these problems, challenges and dilemmas.
Clearly, there is currently a lot of uncertainty on where Europe stands and how it should develop. Therefor PAX organized a Scenario Excercise on the future of Europe as a peace project, looking at how Europe could look like in 2040. We organized three meetings in November and December 2018, in respectively Utrecht, Belgrade and Kyiv, to collect input for the scenarios.
We asked two key questions:
- Will respect for the EU values remain, or will they be more disregarded?
- Will the EU further integrate, or disintegrate?
- 30 March: Presentation at the German Platform for Civil Conflict in Bad Boll
- 16 April: Formal kick off at Nieuwspoort in The Hague
- 24 April: VNG meeting (VNG Europe and International)
- 8 May: Discussion meeting Embassy of Peace Zoetermeer and ILOZ (Interlevensbeschouwelijk Overleg Zoetermeer).
- 9 May: Meeting at the Domkerk, Utrecht
- 18 May: Festival Europa in Utrecht
- 23 May: Student debate at the University of Maastricht
- 6 June: Student debate at the University of Amsterdam in cooperation with SES (Study Association for European Studies).
If you are interested in organizing a debate, conference, meet-up or discussion on the topic of Europe as a Peace Project, with the cooperation of PAX, please contact us. PAX colleagues are available to participate in such activities, and our materials can used.