Conference on the Future of Europe

There is an unexpected potentially positive development in the EU, which may lead to a much faster integration of the EU. On 27 November 2019 in Paris, President Macron with a nod from Chancellor Merkel proposed the setting up of the Conference on the Future of Europe. It started on the Europe Day on 9th May 2021, and is to be completed in spring 2022. Euro Agora website supports the debating on one of the 10 topics of the Conference – European Democracy.

You may wonder why we need to accelerate the long-overdue changes in the EU’s set up. If you think it is Covid-19 then I would say it is just another evidence of how fast the world around has started to change. It is enough to point to the impact of Zoom conferencing on the education and working from home or Amazon shopping. The world around us has simply started to change at an almost exponential change. what now takes a year, by the end of the decade will take about one week. One of the most significant areas of such change is the accelerated growth of self-learning AI, which many expert believe will be beyond human control by 2030. We have just about one decade, perhaps the last decade, to ensure we can still control our future. Therefore, the reform of the EU is not just about saving the EU from collapse by transforming it into a very shallow federation. We must aim for much more – for the federated EU to take a de facto control of the future of our planet. Of the 10 potential organisations that might do it, the EU came as the most credible to ‘save the world’. You can read more about it here, or if you are in a hurry – here.

That is why the outcome of this Conference is so important. For the Conference to be successful, the decision-making process cannot be left to politicians alone. Neither will it be appropriate to call a referendum to approve the decisions of such a Conference. Therefore, throughout the entire Conference, ordinary, randomly selected citizens will join these debates and have a say/vote over any decision taken by the Conference. It must ignite a debate on the way in which the citizens can co-govern their country throughout the term of the parliament in a new style of democracy that may be born out of the current crisis. The composition of the Conference is shown below:

The decision-making body is to be the Conference Plenary. The Conference is to discuss 10 subject areas (called Topics). Each of these Topics is to be deliberated in one of the 12 chosen EU countries in a series of debates at National Citizens Assemblies. The Conference legal document is purposefully imprecise, so that everyone on the European Council could accept the text. The real unknown are the Citizens’ Assemblies. If the final result of the Conference delivers just promises but no actions, that may lead to serious unrest in some EU countries and strengthening the motives for a split of the EU into several bits, like the current Eurozone. On the other hand, Citizens’ Assemblies pressure may create an unexpected opportunity to convert the planned conference into a de facto Constitutional Convention for the future European Federation.

Euro Agora supports through this website just one topic – Strengthening the European Democracy, probably the most contentious area.