1500 participants, 12 Member States, 31 politicians. How did these all people come together despite the Covid restrictions? Our partners at Pulse of Europe discovered a corona-safe way to bring citizens together and connect them with politicians to discuss specific proposals for the future of Europe. People in small groups, either groups of friends or strangers through a matching system, had the opportunity to meet online in Pulse of Europe’s 3rd round of the HomeParliaments project. In fall 2020, citizens from over 12 different European countries took part to discuss European solidarity. The results of the participants’ discussions saw a response by 30 EU politicians across five different parties, in addition to an endorsement by Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
The discussions on European solidarity come at a perfect timing as Europe is experiencing the health, financial, and societal consequences of the Covid crisis, and as developments about the Conference on the Future of Europe are in the pipeline. In this round, participants discussed financial support for countries hit hard by the crisis, social inequality between Member States, and the fight against climate change, under the overarching theme of European solidarity. The most popular policy proposal discussed by the HomeParliaments participants was on the issue of the EU focusing on environmentally friendly innovation and jobs, with an average approval of 8.9 out of 10, according to the participants’ votes. The full report of the 3rd round of HomeParliaments can be found here.
HomeParliaments is an innovative deliberation project that yields scalable, pan-European results. Small groups of citizens gather together, either online or offline, and are asked specific questions about European policy, such as, “Should the EU invest more in social policy measures to tackle social inequality between the Member States?”. After a round of debate, the participants vote on a 0-10 scale to express their support for the topic. All this data is compiled in a report and published, and politicians are then invited to respond to the results and explain the feasibility of getting HomeParliament’s recommendations into EU policy. This feedback loop ensures that the debates are not only enjoyable, but also politically meaningful. The HomeParliaments concept originates from Dr. Raban Fuhrmann of Democracy International’s Academy for a Learning Democracy.
For more information and to find the recorded webinars with political partners please visit: https://homeparliaments.eu/en/
You can join the 4th round of European HomeParliaments starting in April and debate the future of Europe! Stay informed and register for the next round under : https://homeparliaments.eu/en/