As part of the Conference on the Future of Europe, randomly selected citizens' forums began their work on 17 September 2021. In these forums, participants discuss the future of the European Union in order to jointly formulate recommendations.
The question is how the EU should evolve to meet future challenges. The citizens' forums will debate ideas from events across the EU as well as suggestions submitted via the conference website. The resulting recommendations will be discussed with the EU institutions and other stakeholders.
Who takes part?
There are four European Citizens' Forums, each consisting of 200 citizens. Participating citizens were randomly selected by an independent polling company according to five criteria to reflect the diversity of the EU: geographical origin (nationality and urban/rural), gender, age, socio-economic background and level of education. Young people between the ages of 16 and 25 make up one third of the participants in each forum, and a gender balance is maintained.
What will be debated?
Each Citizens' Forum will address a number of important issues
- A Stronger Economy / Social Justice and Employment / Education, Culture, Youth and Sport / Digital Transformation
- European democracy / values and rights, rule of law, security
- Climate change and environment / Health
- The EU in the world / Migration
Members of the Citizens' Forums have the opportunity to raise additional topics. Independent experts are available to advise at the meetings.
When do the Citizens' Forums meet?
Each of the citizens' forums will meet three times. The first sessions will take place over four weekends between 17 September and 17 October at the Parliament's premises in Strasbourg. The second session will be held online in November, and the third session will be held in various EU cities in December and January, pandemic conditions permitting.
What happens to the results?
The Citizens' Forums formulate recommendations that are discussed at the plenary session of the Conference on the Future of Europe. This conference brings together citizens, representatives of the EU institutions, national parliaments and other stakeholders. Twenty representatives from each Citizens' Forum will attend the plenary session of the conference and present the results of the work of the Citizens' Forums.
The recommendations of the Citizens' Forums will feed into the final report of the Conference, which will be prepared by the Conference Executive Committee in spring 2022. This will consist of representatives of the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission (the institutions that will have to implement the conclusions of the Conference), as well as observers from the ranks of all Conference themes. The report is prepared in close cooperation with and must be approved by the plenary assembly of the Conference.
How can one follow the work of the Citizens' Forums?
The meetings of the Citizens' Forums, in which all members participate, are broadcast online. More information can be found on the Conference website.
More information: Conference on the Future of Europe