Written by Lena Hirschenberger.
The Conference on the Future of Europe’s aim is to debate how the EU should develop in the future and to give European citizens a voice in the process, announced Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in her inaugural address.
People’s ideas will be collected on the Digital Platform, in European Citizens’ Panels and de-centralised conference events all over Europe. The Conference Plenary – comprised of representatives of the Citizens’ Panels, the Parliament, the Council, the Commission, national parliaments, the Committee of the Regions, the European Economic and Social Committee, social partners and the European Youth Forum – will then discuss the ideas put forward. Launched in April 2021, the conference is expected to reach conclusions and provide guidance for the European institutions to follow up, by spring 2022.
The conference topics are divided into nine areas, with one additional ‘open’ area, reserved for out-of-the-box ideas. The topics are: ‘Climate change and the environment‘, ‘Health‘, ‘A stronger economy, social justice and jobs‘, ‘European Union in the world‘, ‘Values and rights, rule of law, security‘, ‘Digital transformation‘, ‘European democracy‘, ‘Migration‘, ‘Education, culture, youth and sport‘, and ‘Other ideas‘.
‘Europe in the world’ will look at the European Union’s global engagement and covers such questions as: What role should the EU play in the world? How can we ensure security? With which partners, and in which forms, do we want to trade? Who are our neighbours and how should we interact with them? Who do we want to include in the European Union? What should development cooperation look like and which humanitarian aid and civil protection actions should we take?
To support the proceedings of the conference, our EPRS policy analysts have prepared research material, available here in reverse chronological order. The following list will continually be updated as the conference unfolds:
European Peace Facility – Investing in international stability and security
Briefing by Beatrix Immenkamp, June 2021, 12 pages.
Critical raw materials in EU external policies: Improving access and raising global standards
Briefing by Marcin Szczepanski, May 2021, 12 pages.
International trade dispute settlement: WTO Appellate Body crisis and the multiparty interim appeal arrangement
Briefing by Jana Titievskaia, April 2021, 8 pages.
Understanding EU financing for external action
In-Depth Analysis by Velina Lilyanova, February 2021, 41 pages.
Charting a course through stormy waters: The EU as a maritime security actor
Briefing by Tania Latici, Eric Pichon, and Branislav Stanicek, February 2021, 12 pages.
Support for democracy through EU external policy: New tools for growing challenges
Briefing by Ionel Zamfir, February 2021, 12 pages.
EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement: An analytical overview
In-Depth Analysis by Issam Hallak, February 2021, 37 pages.
Qualified majority voting in foreign and security policy: Pros and Cons
Briefing byTania Latici,January 2021, 8 pages.
After Cotonou: Towards a new agreement with the African, Caribbean and Pacific states
Briefing by Eric Pichon, January 2021, 12 pages.
EU-Turkey customs union: Modernisation or suspension?
Briefing by Branislav Stanicek, December 2020, 8 pages.
Global mega-trends: Scanning the post-coronavirus horizon
Briefing by Danièle Réchard, November 2020, 7 pages.
Understanding EU-NATO cooperation: Theory and practice
Briefing by Tania Latici, October 2020, 12 pages.
On the path to ‘strategic autonomy’: The EU in an evolving geopolitical environment
Study by various EPRS authors, September 2020, 60 pages.
Peace and Security in 2020: Overview of EU action and outlook for the future
Study by Elena Lazarou and others, September 2020, 112 pages.
The future of multilateralism and strategic partnerships
Briefing by Elena Lazarou, September 2020, 12 pages.
International trade policy
Briefing by Jana Titievskaya, July 2020, 11 pages.
The EU and Russia: Locked into confrontation
Briefing by Martin Russell, July 2020, 12 pages.
EU-China relations: Taking stock after the 2020 EU-China Summit
Briefing by Gisela Grieger, June 2020, 12 pages.
Towards a new EU strategy with Africa: A renewed focus on outreach
Briefing byErich Pichon, June 2020, 8 pages.
A new approach to EU enlargement
Briefing by Branislav Stanicek, March 2020, 4 pages.
Religion and the EU’s external policies: Increasing engagement
In-Depth Analysis by Philippe Perchoc et al, February 2020, 44 pages.
The European Parliament’s evolving soft power – From back-door diplomacy to agenda-setting: Democracy support and mediation,
Briefing by Naja Bentzen and Beatrix Immenkamp, September 2019, 8 pages.
Mapping threats to peace and democracy worldwide. Normandy Index 2021,
Study by Elena Lazarou and Branislav Stanicek, July 2021, 88 pages
Turkey: Remodelling the eastern Mediterranean. Conflicting exploration of natural gas reserves,
Briefing by Branislav Stanicek, September 2020, 8 pages