17 march 2017: Regions' Debate. Reflecting on the future of Europe
"Reflecting on Europe" is an initiative launched by the European Committee of the Regions to offer a space for citizens to present their ideas, thoughts and opinions on what the European Union should be. In this context, regional and local authorities are asked to engage in a dialogue with their citizens and to collect feedback on their concerns, thoughts, proposals and ideas about the future of the EU. The CoR takes the commitment to make citizens' voices heard in shaping the on-going political debate on the future of Europe and to establish a dialogue with people in simple words, around joint values and with the possibility to bring their concerns and concrete proposals to the EU level debate. On the voluntary initiative of its members, the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) stands ready to support the organisation of local events across Europe in 2017, mainly in the form of "citizens' debates" upon the initiative of its Members, regions, provinces, cities and their national associations and in partnership with other EU institutions in the Member States.
In addition, political debates could also be initiated by regional parliaments or local councils on the topic "Reflecting on Europe". The conclusions of these debates or possible declarations or resolutions adopted, could feed in the CoR Opinion on "Reflecting on Europe: the voice of regional and local authorities to rebuild trust in the European Union", as demanded by the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk. The outcome of the series of "Reflecting on Europe" local events 2017 will feed into the CoR contribution to the Reflection on the EU which will be based on: a resolution on the Future of Europe to be adopted during the February 2017 plenary session of the European Committee of the Regions; an opinion on " Reflecting on Europe: the voice of regional authorities to rebuild trust in the European Union"- to be adopted in late 2017/early 2018, ahead of the launching of the campaign for the European elections of 2019.