The European Union is about to embark on a new ambitious Conference on the Future of Europe. The projected process follows previous exercises I have been involved in (the EU Commissions consultations on the White Paper 2000; the Convention drafting a Constitutional treaty 2001-03; the Wise Man group 2008-10).
Along with many friends and colleagues involved in debates on European democracy, we fear that due to its top-down approach, it is set to defy its own purpose: to be “a bottom-up exercise where European citizens are listened to and their voices contribute to the debates on the future of Europe”.
Alberto Alemanno, Niccolo Milanese, and myself drafted an open letter addressed to the President of the European Commission, President of the Council of the European Union and President of the European Parliament as they met on Jan 31 at the Jean Monnet House in Bazoches, France, to discuss Europe’s political challenges. It has already been signed by 100 academics.