Shape the ECI by contributing early!

Welcome to our online debate entitled: “Stakeholders’ Community to Federate European Citizens’ Initiatives”

European Citizens’ Initiatives (ECI) as well as Political Parties’ debates and campaigns could play a key role in the running up to 2014 European Elections.

We can distinguish 3 main phases:

  • Phase 1 – April 2012: Official Launch of the European Citizens’ Initiative (TEU 2009, Art.11.4). EurActiv, together with Fondation EurActiv PoliTech and, is playing a key role in making the ECI a success.
  • Phase 2 – 2013: European Political platforms leading to the choice of candidates and programmes will take into account successful ECIs, surveys and national elections.
  • Phase 3 – 1st half of 2014: European Elections’ Campaigns take off complementing European Parliament and parties communication.

The common denominator between these topics is the CITIZEN.

Given the very low threshold required to register and launch an ECI (‘at least 7 citizens, who are residents of at least 7 different Member States’), one can assume thousands of ECI will be submitted, but only tens or hundreds will make it through the whole process and force the European Commission to take a policy view.

Therefore, potential initiatives will need a one-stop-shop for building alliances amongst an heterogeneous community of stakeholders to meet, deliberate, rate, compare and in some cases join forces.

Prior to broaden the debates triggered by individual initiatives, there is a genuine opportunity to:

  • Shape the ECI official process, which is not 100% clear yet.
  • Empower a novel and neutral civil society-based platform to be launch this Autumn, which aims to provide online tools to build alliances across stakeholders in regard to campaigning for, proving of the achievement of the requested quorum of supporting statements and federating European Citizens Initiatives.
  • Gather momentum behind potentially successful initiatives and prepare for policy and Media impact. in partnership with Fondation EurActiv PoliTech and its core-partners is hosting this debate for early innovators and commentators, paving the grounds for platform to be publicly launched.

Please find below the main questions, we would like to have your views on during this Online Debate:

  • Question 1: Will the European Citizens’ Initiative transform the European democratic life and reduce the widening ‘Democratic Gap’ between its citizens and decision-makers?
  • Question 2: Will the European Citizens’ Initiative “bring Europe closer to its Citizens”?
  • Question 3: Will Internet and Social Media unleash the potential of the European Citizens’ Initiative?
  • Question 4: Will the ECI become a ‘participatory instrument’ for stakeholders to shape Europe’s Agenda?
  • Question 5: Will the ECI change EU decision-making balance of power? Are European political parties ready for the ECI? Will the ECI be an opportunity to create pan-European political parties in light of the 2014 European Elections?
  • Question 6: Can 1 million citizens be ignored in a democracy? Will the ECI lead to more frustration or be a success for Europe? What do YOU think? What are YOUR opinions?
  • Question 7: What are YOUR ECIs? How can YOU help US federating ECIs? How should look like? What are you expecting from such a platform?


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