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Conference on the Future of Europe

What is the Conference on the Future of Europe?

The conference on the future of europe is a unique and timely opportunity for european citizens to debate on europe’s challenges and priorities. No matter where you are from or what you do, this is the place to think about what future you want for the european union.

The European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission have committed to listen to Europeans and to follow up, within their sphere of competences, on the recommendations made. 

By spring 2022, the Conference is expected to reach conclusions and provide guidance on the future of Europe.

Who can take part?

European citizens, from all walks of life and corners of the Union, with young people playing a central role in shaping the future of the European project. 

European, national, regional and local authorities, as well as civil society and other organisations who want to organise events and contribute ideas.

All participants shall respect the values established in our Charter of Principles

Which are the components of the Conference?

  • Multilingual digital platform – will be the place for citizens to share ideas and send online submissions. They will be collected, analysed, monitored and published throughout the Conference;
  • Decentralised events – online, in-person* and hybrid events held by people and organisations as well as national, regional and local authorities across Europe;
  • European Citizens’ Panels – will discuss different topics and put forward their proposals; they will be representative in terms of geographic origin, gender, age, socioeconomic background and/or level of education;
  • Conference Plenaries – will ensure that the recommendations from the national and European citizens’ panels, grouped by themes, are debated without a predetermined outcome and without limiting the scope to pre-defined policy areas. The Conference Plenary will be composed of representatives from the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission, as well as representatives from all national Parliaments, on an equal footing and citizens. The Committee of the Regions and the Economic and Social Committee, the social partners, and civil society will also be represented. The High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy will be associated when the international role of the EU is discussed. Representatives of key stakeholders may be invited. The Executive Board will draw and publish the conclusions of the Conference Plenary.

What is the role of this digital platform?

The digital platform is the hub of the Conference: it is your way to get involved and speak up at the Conference. Here you can share your thoughts on Europe and the changes which need to happen, see what others have to say, find events near you, organise your own event and follow the progress and the outcome of the Conference.  

How do you have your say? 

Simply choose from the comprehensive range of topics and let the Conference know your opinion. Your ideas will be collected, analysed, monitored and published on the platform, throughout the Conference. They will then feed into the discussions taking place in the European citizens’ Panels and the Plenaries. A feedback mechanism will ensure that the ideas expressed during the Conference events result in concrete recommendations for EU action. The final outcome of the Conference will be presented in a report to the Joint Presidency. The three Institutions will examine swiftly how to follow up effectively to this report, each within their own sphere of competences and in accordance with the Treaties.

Who is leading the Conference?

The Conference is placed under the authority of the three institutions, represented by the President of the European Parliament, the President of the Council and the President of the European Commission, acting as its Joint Presidency.

The Joint Presidency is supported by an Executive Board, which is co-chaired by the three institutions (Mr Guy Verhofstadt, Member of the European Parliament, Mr Gašper Dovžan, State Secretary for EU Affairs for the Slovenian Council Presidency** and Ms Dubravka Šuica, Vice-President of the European Commission in charge of Democracy and Demography). It reports on a regular basis to the Joint Presidency. The Executive Board is responsible for taking decisions by consensus regarding the works of the Conference, its processes and events, overseeing the Conference as it progresses, and preparing the meetings of the Conference Plenary, including citizens’ input and their follow up.

Common Secretariat, of limited size and made up of officials representing the three institutions equally, assists the work of the Executive Board.

The Conference on the Future of Europe is nothing without you and your involvement on this platform. The future is in your hands.

Make your voice heard.

Related documents

Joint Declaration on the Conference on the Future of Europe

Rules of Procedure of the Conference on the Future of Europe

Process of the Conference on the Future of Europe

Timeline of the Conference on the Future of Europe

The Schuman Declaration – 9 May 1950

EU treaties

*Depending on the evolution of the coronavirus pandemic and in compliance with any related restrictions.

**The next Council Presidency (France) will take over from the Slovenian Presidency as co-chair of the Executive Board.


Are you 18 years old and a citizen of the European Union? Get ready to explore Europe! DiscoverEU is proud to be part of the European Year of Rail 2021.

What is DiscoverEU?

DiscoverEU is an initiative of the European Union that gives you the opportunity to discover Europe through learning experiences. Travelling predominantly by rail (there are exceptions to allow those living on islands or in remote areas), you will discover Europe’s stunning landscapes and its variety of cities and towns. You can apply during the two application rounds which take place each year. Successful applicants are awarded with a travel pass.

As an 18-year-old citizen of the European Union, DiscoverEU offers you the opportunity to participate in a travel experience that will enable you to take advantage of the freedom of movement throughout the European Union, explore the diversity of Europe, learn about European cultural heritage and history, and connect with people from all over the continent. Furthermore, DiscoverEU enables you, as a young person, to develop life skills of value to your future, such as independence, confidence, and openness to other cultures.  

Exceptionally for this round, those young people, who were eligible under the two rounds in 2020, which were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, can apply too.

/!\ Another exception for this round: UK nationals are still allowed to participate in this round of DiscoverEU. For more details, check our FAQ A.12.

When is the next round?

Almost 70 000 young people have been awarded a travel pass since the first application round in June 2018. Another round will take place between Tuesday 12 October 2021 at 12:00 (CEST) and Tuesday 26 October 2021 at 12:00 (CEST). An ‘Apply Now’ button will appear on this page on D-Day! 

To be eligible, you need to:

  • Have been born between 1 July 2001 (included) and 31 December 2003 (included);
  • Have the nationality of one of the Member States of the European Union at the time of the award decision;
  • Complete the correct ID or passport number on the online application form.

Then you will need to participate in a quiz (unless you apply as a group member).

If you are selected, you can travel for a period of minimum 1 day and up to 30 days between 1 March 2022 and 28 February 2023. 

Note that if you have a disability or a health problem that makes your trip challenging, you will receive assistance and support to help you take part in DiscoverEU. Check our FAQ C.13 to know more.

Can I travel with my friends?

Yes you can! It really is up to you. You can go solo or add up to 4 friends in your group provided they meet the eligibility conditions above. They will use your application code to submit their own application. Check out our FAQs B.5 to B.11 to know more.

You can also organise meet-ups and combine travel plans with other DiscoverEU travellers! The DiscoverEU Facebook Group is a good platform to do this. Join the Group now to chat with other participants.


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Participatory democracy: issues and perspectives

Participatory democracy is now a key issue in the cohesion policy developed by the EU. Effective link between citizens and rulers or style figure with no real reach? From the 1970s citizens’ juries initiated in Germany to the Citizens’ Climate Convention launched in 2019 in France, PLS takes stock of citizen participation in Europe. Learn more

Democratic deficit: a challenge for Europe!

Has the EU taken advantage of the last European elections to regain the trust of citizens? This Analysis Note looks at the root causes of the European democratic deficit and provides some answers to address them. Learn more