In 2012, the EU won a Nobel Peace Prize for their commitment to advancing democracy, peace, human rights, and reconciliation values within Europe.  

EDC News: Combined minds create a better Europe

One of the European Commission’s priorities is to enhance European democracy, which gives EU citizens a stronger voice in the decision-making process. In recent years, the EU has taken several steps to combat the challenges that arise from Euroscepticism, demographic changes, and global political and economic turbulences. As a response to these trends the Commission strives to build a better, more united Europe with the principals of collective intelligence. This concept entails a group of people pooling their thinking for better policy-making in a multiplicity of areas. Collective intelligence forms the basis of the Future of Europe Conference  and ‘Have Your Say' initiatives, which allow citizens to openly discuss various priorities, issues, ongoing initiatives and enforce the EU’s democratic principles. Similarly, the 2014 Eurobarometer illustrates citizens’ willingness to participate in EU’s democratic procedures, where 94% of respondents indicate their belief in democracy, and 90% stated that European elections are vital. The implementation of collective intelligence, citizens’ willingness to participate and understanding the demographic changes in Member States allows the Commission to develop effective policies which address the needs of its citizens.

One of the ways in which the EU aims to ensure active involvement, is by focusing on involving the youth through the EU’s “Engage” strategy, in order to reinforcing the democratic values and promote further youth participation in the future of the EU.

The Commission will engage in consolidating its partnership with the European Parliament, the voice of the people, by ensuring its involvement at all stages of international negotiations, as well as transparency and integrity throughout the legislative process. In addition to improving democratic and decision-making processes, the Commission will also tackle threats to these processes, such as disinformation.

Further Information

  • Legal Documents
    • New push for European democracy, as digital technologies and social media fundamentally reshape political and civic participation, citizens, especially the younger generation, are demanding greater involvement in the way policies are shaped, beyond voting in elections every 5 years (COM 2020/27 final), EUR-Lex.
    • Tackling online disinformation, a European Approach, the exposure of citizens to large scale disinformation, including misleading or outright false information, is a major challenge for Europe (COM 2018/236 final), EUR-Lex.
    • White Paper on the Future of Europe maps out the drivers of change in the next decade and presents a range of scenarios for how Europe could evolve by 2025 (COM 2017/2025 final), EUR-Lex.
    • Better Regulation, delivering better results for a stronger Union depicts the change of the way the Commission works and sets its policies, by putting better regulation principles at the heart of its policy-making processes, to make sure its policies deliver better results for citizens, businesses and public authorities (COM 2016/615 final), EUR-Lex.
    • Better regulation for better results - An EU agenda of the European Commission is determined to change both what the European Union (EU) does, and how it does it. The EU, its institutions, and its body of law, are there to serve citizens and businesses who must see this in their daily lives and operations (COM 2015/215 final), EUR-Lex.
  • Journals
    • European Union Youth Strategy 2019-2027 (2020/C 212 I/01) sets overall objectives, guiding principles and a basis for further cooperation in the field of youth at EU level, with special focus on the EU Youth Dialogue, the Future National Activities Planner, the European Youth Goals and EU Work Plan for the period 2019-2021, EUR-Lex
  • Institutional Agreement
    • Institutional Agreement (L 123/1) Institutional agreement between EU Parliament, the Council of EU, and EU Commission on better law-making, EUR-Lex
  • Reports
    • The Impact of Demographic Change exploring the demographic changes in Europe and utilizing the opportunity for Europe to build a fairer and more resilient society, European Commission Report
  • Briefings, Blogs & Summaries
    • Collective Intelligence the democratic dimension suggests that the power of the collective can be leveraged so as to improve public decision-making systems. Supported by technology, policy-makers can harness the 'civic surplus' of citizens – thus providing smarter solutions to regulatory challenges, European Parliament Think Tank
    • Have Your Say webpage, the European Commission initiative through which individuals and organisations can give feedback on roadmaps or impact assessments of upcoming legislation, European Commission
    • VIDEO “Have your say – your voice matters” describes the “Have Your Say” initiative and how it works, European Commission
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