Our Story and Vision

Citizens Take Over Europe emerged in the spring 2020 amidst the recent Covid-19 pandemia, in which we recognized how much the lack of European democracy is deeply affecting our lives.

We are a group of civil society organizations, citizens and residents from across Europe, joined in a common effort to promote a forward-looking and citizens-centered European democracy. While our national leaders struggle to find common solutions for the major challenges of our time, from ensuring strong, well-funded and inclusive public services to protecting our planet or guaranteeing fundamental rights across Europe, we take our own responsibility to put citizens and residents at the centre of the conversation about the future of Europe. Not only that: we believe it is fundamental for people in Europe to organize across borders and design the Europe that we want: a Europe that cares and is taken care of.

On May 9th 2020, Europe Day, the European Union was planning on launching its Conference on the Future of Europe, another institutional process in which citizens would have little to say about their future. Instead, together, we have reclaimed since then a political, transnational space by means of an online conference to discuss problems Europeans are facing and co-develop solutions form a political, social and personal perspective.

Now, we are developing and will advocate for key criteria for a successful Conference on the Future of Europe, that puts citizens at the heart of the process.

We demand a fundamental rethinking on how our European democracy works by empowering citizens by tried and tested participatory tools to influence decision making, as well as through innovative deliberative methodologies.

On May 9th 2020, Europe Day, the European Union was planning on launching its Conference on the Future of Europe, another institutional process in which citizens would have little to say about their future. Instead, together, we have reclaimed since then a political, transnational space by means of an online conference to discuss problems Europeans are facing and co-develop solutions form a political, social and personal perspective.

Now, we are developing and will advocate for key criteria for a successful Conference on the Future of Europe, that puts citizens at the heart of the process.

We demand a fundamental rethinking on how our European democracy works by empowering citizens by tried and tested participatory tools to influence decision making, as well as through innovative deliberative methodologies.

Our vision

We aspire to a Europe that is:

  • Democratic
  • Solidary
  • Transfeminist
  • Ecological and sustainable
  • Peaceful, where the violence of war is replaced by the diplomacy of peoples.
  • Post-capitalist
  • Antiracist
  • Plural, open and inclusive

Organisation members

AEGEE

Europe AEGEE

Alliance4Europe

Belgium Alliance4Europe

Another Europe is Possible

UK Another Europe is Possible

Aufa 100

Citizens Lab

Europe Citizens Lab

Civico Europa

Europe Civico Europa

Co-Creating Europe

Europe

Democracy International

Germany Democracy International

ECI Campaign

Europe ECI Campaign

EUMANS

Europe EUMANS

Europa Huis

Europe

European Alternatives

Europe European Alternatives

European Civic Forum

Belgium European Civic Forum

European Constitution

Europe European Constitution

European Democracy Lab

Germany European Democracy Lab

European House

Hungary

Federal Network for Citizenship Engagement (BBE)

Europe Federal Network for Citizenship Engagement (BBE)

Forum do Cidadaos

Portugal Forum do Cidadaos

LEAP

LEAP

Mehr Demokratie

Germany Mehr Demokratie

Music Theatre International

New Europeans

New Europeans

Pulse of Europe

Europe Pulse of Europe

Rinascimento Green

Europe

Stand Up for Europe

Europe

TAKE A BREAK FROM BREXIT

UK

The Good Lobby

Europe The Good Lobby

We Move

Europe We Move
This initiative is supported by the following organisations:

Arty Farty

BOZAR

Citizens For Europe

Europe

Creacion Positiva

Spain

Cube Your Take

Die Vielen

ECIT Foundation

European Democracy Network

Europe

European Future Forum

European Moments

Feminist Europe Platform

Spain

Fundacio Aroa

Generationen stiftung

Imagine Europe

Live Europe

Łódzkie Dziewuchy Dziewuchom

Poland

Nyt Europa

Obessu

Belgium

Obiezione Respinta

Schuman

Stiftungzukunft Berlin

Summer of Solidarity

TodaysArt

Volonteurope

Voters Without Borders

Vox Europe

WAKE UP EUROPE

We Are Europe

Young Federalists Germany

Germany
With the support of:

Citizens for Europe

Citizens for Europe

European Parliament

European Parliament

Schopflin Foundation

Schopflin Foundation

Working Groups

The Working Groups of CTOE are responsible for implementing the strategic direction of the coalition. The WG meet regularly in online meetings and report back to the weekly plenary. Read more about the members of the WG below.

You can join any working group you wish, by simply emailing the coordinators.

You can then see directly with them what they are working on at the moment and what you want to be involved in:

Advocacy and policy

Description: 

The working group serves as the political and advocacy arm of the CTOE alliance. It comprises civil society actors who are members of CTOE as well as individual experts who are non-alliance members and dedicating their time in their personal capacity.

The working group drafts the political position of CTOE with regards to the Conference on the Future of Europe and serves as a civil society watchdog over the Conference’s developments.

Aims:

The working group aims to monitor the political developments of the Conference on the Future of Europe and establish advocacy routes to lobby the CTOE position, which is drafted by the working group with support and approval by the CTOE plenary. It also aims to build its lobby work and maintain and strengthen relations with political actors of particular importance in the Conference developments. Through its advocacy work and the advocacy tools used, the working group also aims to mobilize the network, emphasize the coalition’s activism, publicize the coalitions’ positions, and further build the CTOE coalition to wider actors.

Coordinator:
Daniela Vancic
advocacy@citizenstakeover.eu

Self-organizing process and European citizens assemblies

Description:

This Working Group aims to promote the Citizens’ Assembly model on a European level. The work of this WP is driven by the belief that Citizens’ Assemblies are a fundamental and necessary tool to make out for the shortcomings of representative democracy, at both national and European level. Open to all, it brings together organisations, professionals, activists and volunteers sharing a deep interest in democratic innovations, commitment for European integration and belief in collective intelligence and in the capacity of citizens to debate and decide on political issues beyond particular interests. Its position is reflected in the Manifesto for a European Citizens Assembly, drafted by the Working Group and published in several European newspapers. 

Aims:
Based on a series of exchanges of views with leading experts in deliberative democracy, and building on a network of practitioners of Citizens’ Assemblies (G1000, Forum dos Ciudadanos, Démocratie Ouverte, Politici per caso, Burgerrat, etc.), the WP works at a Blueprint to act as a guideline for future transnational citizens’ assemblies. On the long-run and building on the contacts and resources mobilised in drafting its Blueprint, the WP aims to self-organise a transnational citizens’ assembly to serve as an experimentation for a European Citizen Assembly.

Coordinators:
Michele Fiorillo, Lorenzo Mineo, Camille Dobler
self-organize@citizenstakeover.eu

Constitutional question

Description:
The WG “constitutional question” brings together experts from civil society and the scientific community in regular meetings, to address European constitutional issues with different methodologies from varying perspectives:

By using a novel methodology for consultation with citizens, civil society and other stakeholders the WG contributes to better understanding people’s perceptions and preferences as regards the meanings of democratic citizenship for the development of the EU;

By exploring national and international democratic innovations, the WG elaborates a) the normative principles for the “Conference on the Future of Europe” that are key to inclusive democratic participation and deliberation (e.g.transparency, accountability, effectiveness, openness); and b) the institutional rights and entitlements, instruments and mechanisms that are central for making these “10 Principles” work in practice;

By checking the constitutional foundations of the EU (e.g. the Charter of Fundamental Rights, the EU’s institutional architecture and procedures) for democratic deficits and democratisation potentials, the WG will map out reform strategies for strengthening the transnational, inclusively participatory and deliberative sources of European democratic legitimacy;
By cooperating with the other working groups, the WG translates its propositions into CTOE advocacy and communication campaigns.

Aims:
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Coordinators:
Ulrike Liebert, Laura Galante
euconstitution@citizenstakeover.eu

Communications & events

Description:
The working group serves as the dissemination and communication machine of the CTOE alliance. It comprises civil society actors who are members of CTOE as well as individual experts in the field of communications.

The working group meets regularly to draft, discuss and implement the communication strategy of the coalition, and in parallel coordinates when needed events and interactive activities that promote the coalition’s values to external actors.

Aims:
The working group aims to communicate and publicize the coalitions’ position, and further strengthen the bond between the CTOE coalition and the external public. After all, the coalition is made for citizens.

In addition to being responsible for communicating with the public, the communications working group plays a role in liaising between the different messages spread internally by the diverse coalition members, and gathers input to build a strong common narrative, key messages, statements, as well as co-organised events, petitions and other initiatives.

Coordinators:
Marta Cillero
m.cillero@euroalter.com
Soundous Boualam
soundous.boualam@alliance4europe.eu
Vladimir Sestovic
vsestovic@civic-forum.eu