The world around us is changing and Europe needs to act quickly in order to find answers for the new challenges facing us in these first decades of the 21st century. Not only are natural resources such as petrol and gas finite, but global warming threatens to create havoc on our planet. The EYE2014 invites young Europeans to find solutions and share their ideas for sustainable policies.
The word sustainability immediately brings to mind natural resources and the energy market. A recent Eurobarometer study shows that energy has become a key political issue for 90% of Europeans.
The European Commission has set several energy targets to be implemented and achieved by 2020. Greenhouse emissions must be reduced by 20% from 1990 levels, energy efficiency must improve by 20%, and 20% of all energy consumption must come from renewable resources.
Natural resources also directly affect foreign policy. In the midst of the Ukraine crisis, Russian company Gazprom raised the price of gas pumped to Kiev by more than 80%. These developments put further pressure on the European energy market, as 30% of Europe's gas imports come directly from the Russian Federation.
How will societies of the future deal with natural resources? Are we bound to continue using fossil fuels or will we finally succeed in switching to renewable sources? How can we fulfil our energy requirements in an environmentally friendly manner?
However, sustainability is not only about managing resources. It is also about how we choose to lead our lives. What does it take to have a sustainable lifestyle? Is it really necessary to own when you can share? How can we shape a better economic system? What have we learnt from the financial crisis?
During EYE2014 the Ideas Labs will invite participants to discuss these questions and share their vision for the future of sustainable policies.
In the Ideas Labs, participants will decide on the agenda and then report on the outcome of the debates. They will be able to share their criticisms and concerns on the "EYE2014 Ideas Labs" website as early as 10 April, while during the event itself, participants will work together to come up with answers to the criticisms of current policies most frequently raised during the online phase.
Click on the links below for more information.
When the newly elected MEPs convene in July for the first time since the May elections, they will be presented with a report brimming with ideas and proposals from EYE2014. Young journalists from across Europe will be in charge of summarising the ideas and suggestions from the event.
Putting together ideas and visions from 55 workshops and more than 90 expert panels is not an easy task. However, young journalists from The European Youth Press, an umbrella association of 60,000 young journalists in Europe, will do it, as part of the annual European Youth Media Days which this year exceptionally takes place in Strasbourg.
They will closely follow the activities, interview speakers, take down the main ideas and suggestions, and finally draft a report, which summarises the five key themes of EYE2014: youth unemployment, digital revolution, sustainability, European values and the future of the EU.
The aim is to provide the newly elected MEPs with a clear idea about young people's concerns, dreams and future perspectives.
Follow the EYE2014 live on ARTE
Franco-German television network ARTE, the official media partner, will broadcast from the event and provide support for various activities, including "World of Work" - Where are our jobs, an interactive workshop examining young people's employment expectations and their views on the current job market.
ARTE will broadcast a special edition of ARTE Lounge, in which classical music stars will meet pop music artists. You will be able to follow it live on ARTE's online music platform.
For more information click on the links below.
Ever since its creation, the EU has always been a work in progress, evolving constantly as time passes by. Moving into the 21st century, we are faced with new obstacles and challenges to overcome and the decisions taken at the EU level today will have a profound impact on the opportunities available to Europeans tomorrow. Therefore it´s crucial that politicians and institutions are not only open to the demands of the younger generations, but actively seek to understand them.
Six years after the financial collapse that plunged the world into the worst economic crisis since the 1930s, European economies are showing the first signs of improvement. However, youth unemployment still remains very high, leading people to question what direction the EU should take.
To what degree should the European Union regulate the financial sector? Which values will be the most important in tomorrow's Europe? Which decisions should be taken at the European level and which ones at the national level? Will further integration bring about a stronger shared European identity or will it lead to more Eurosceptism and how would that affect the European project?
One of the long-standing criticisms concerning the EU is its alleged lack of democratic legitimacy. Is it enough to have a directly elected European Parliament? How can European policy makers become more accountable to the people?
The European Youth Event 2014 will include a series of more than 30 activities discussing issues related to the Future of the EU. The Parliament, its partners and a broad range of youth associations from all over Europe will organise debates, workshops, role play games, creative ideas labs and challenging ideas checks, where participants will be asked to present their vision for the future of Europe.
For the full EYE2014 programme, click on the programme link. If you can't make it to Strasbourg, you'll have the opportunity to follow several debates and activities online and take part in the debate through the social media channels of the EYE2014. Check the link below to discover how to take part online!
The internet and social media offer unimaginable possibilities for communication, however they also have their drawbacks. While enabling mass communication at little or no cost, they also facilitate spreading hateful and racist ideas and messages.
While the internet has provided us with easy ways to stay in touch with our friends and family and share content that we love, it has also opened a huge window for hateful comments and personal harassment, with consequences that are anything but virtual.
How can we tackle bullying in cyberspace? How do we protect young people and ensure that human rights are respected?
The Council of Europe has decided to take a stand against cyber bullying by launching a large scale youth campaign to support the principles of equality, dignity, human rights and diversity on the internet. The "No Hate Speech Movement" aims to raise awareness about the negative consequences of online hate speech and it encourages young victims to stand up for their rights.
During the EYE2014 event, the Council of Europe will present its campaign, which will kick off the debate on human rights on the internet. In the YO!Village outside the Parliament's buildings, the Council will showcase its Living Library. This involves 25 people who have been a victim of discrimination talking about their experiences and how it has affected their lives.
Discrimination based on race, ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation is nothing new on the web, it happens every day, and the consequences are serious. A Eurobarometer study shows that cyber bullying among children and teens can affect their school performance and often leads to depression or even suicidal tendencies among the victims. For instance, in Belgium more than a third of all teenagers claim to have been victims of cyber-bullying at least once.
Thousands of young Europeans have now applied to take part in the European Youth Event (EYE2014) in Strasbourg in May. For all those who won’t have the chance to attend physically, there will be several other ways to follow and participate in the event online.
Thousands of people from every corner of Europe, including neighbouring and candidate countries, have applied for the EYE2014 event. They come from schools, universities, youth organisations as well as spontaneous groups formed with the help of EYE social media platforms, as individual applications could not be accepted
However, this event is not only for those who can be there in person. The European Parliament will enable everyone to participate in the event online. They will have the opportunity to follow several workshops, panel discussions and performances via web streaming.
By using their PCs or tablets, online participants will be able to ask questions via Twitter and participate directly in the discussions and debates taking place in Strasbourg. Workshop moderators will select the best questions coming from the web and include them in the live discussions.
In Strasbourg, giant screens inside and around the Parliament's building, will show the live streaming of the meetings and discussions, together with Twitter and Instagram walls. The Parliament will also provide participants with a mobile application containing all information about the events, including a personalised schedule and maps, as well as the biographies of all speakers. The application will be launched in April.
When it comes to engaging people through social media and online communication, the European Parliament has always been a pioneer among public institutions. Nearly 70% of MEPs have a personal website and more than 60% are active on social media platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter. The European Parliament has almost 1.3 million Facebook fans, making it the biggest parliamentary Facebook community in the world.
How do you organise a youth event that is relevant to young people? The solution is to involve them as much as possible, through youth organisations by and for young people.
The European Parliament will not be alone in welcoming more than 5,000 participants to the European Youth Event 2014 in Strasbourg in May. The European Youth Forum, representing 99 youth organisations in Europe, will play a leading role, offering debates and workshops as well as concerts and DJ sets. Its mission during the EYE2014 is to showcase the impact youth organisations can have and to highlight the positive contribution young people make to Europe.
All these activities are going to be part of the 5th edition of the Yo!Fest, including a YO!Village, outside the European Parliament, where national and international youth organisations organise discussions, sport activities and artistic performances. But it's not all about worthy events and profound debates...The city of Strasbourg and Youth Forum will also organise a concert in the city's main square on Friday evening as well as a club night with live bands and DJs on Saturday evening inside the Yo!Village. The "Jeunes Agriculteurs du Bas Rhin", a young farmer association and a partner of the EYE2014 event, will contribute to the catering in the Yo!Village, offering a wide variety of fresh and healthy meals.
Stay tuned on this website for more updates on the Yo!Fest programme. If you want to know more about the activities of the European Youth Forum and the Jeunes Agriculteurs du Bas Rhin, please check out their website by clicking on the links below.
Widespread access to internet, smart phones and social media are just some of the elements of the digital revolution. In two days’ time, the European Youth Event 2014 will hold a series of ten activities branded "Digital Revolution”. This, will offer young Europeans, who are most affected by these sweeping changes, a chance to find out how and to what extent the digital world will continue to reshape our lives.
The digital revolution is affecting everyone and everything: in areas such as research, innovation, business, as well as public communication and social relations. According to Eurostat, two-thirds of Europeans had access to the internet in 2012 and nearly 60% of them had purchased products or services online. In 2013 more than 40% of the EU population interacted online with public authorities and institutions. This is only 9% below the ambitious targets set by the European Commission in its "2020 Digital Agenda" to digitalise the EU economy and get the most out of it.
However, the extensive use of social media also raises various issues: will Facebook, Twitter and other social networks make politics more transparent and revitalise democracy? How can the interests of US internet giants be reconciled with the need to protect people's privacy? Will new employment opportunities arise through digital entrepreneurship and e-commerce?
At the Digital Agenda event, various experts, including researchers and government and industry representatives will share their views with participants and offer their expertise. The European Youth Event 2014 will work together with the European Young Innovators Forum (EYIF), the leading foundation for youth innovation in Europe, to prepare several of the activities.
The first confirmed speakers are Mr Björn Vöcking, head of marketing at EA Sports, and Ms Sanna Lukander, vice president of learning and book publishing at Rovio Entertainment Ltd. They will launch the debate on the impact of online games on social behaviours and discuss if games can serve as a learning tool for new generations.
With just over three months left before the start of the European Youth Event 2014. From May 9 to 11, 5.000 young Europeans, aged between 16 and 30 years old, will come to the European Parliament premises in Strasbourg to discuss their vision for Europe. It will also be an opportunity for them to debate European values, the future of the EU, as well as sustainability, the digital revolution and youth unemployment.
From 9-11 May 2014, Parliament will open its doors to up to 5,000 young Europeans to come and participate in the European Youth Event. They will have to be aged between 16 and 30 and come from one of the EU member states or the candidate countries.
For three days, the European Parliament in Strasbourg will open its doors to young people from all over Europe. Young people will debate hot topics and discuss with inspiring personalities. You will have the chance to meet other young Europeans, enjoy three days of political debate and a fun-filled time!