Youth are the future of Europe and we believe they have a vital role to play in countering growing anti-EU and nationalist trends by coming together across borders to give voice to the Europe they want to see.
In our field, the need to support an engaged youth across Europe is stronger than ever. With potential for global weaker support for anti-corruption efforts and transparency in tax, there is a real danger that the EU will move to loosen its commitment to being a space of open and transparent governance.
2017 and 2018 are crucial years for anti-corruption work in Europe. 2017 will see the passing of the fifth money laundering directive, which looks set to give EU Member States more flexibility on whether they make beneficial ownership registers public – a key tool in detecting corruption. It will also see the ongoing discussions of the PANA committee in the European Parliament on tax havens, shell companies and financial secrecy. Moving into 2018 and the Brexit negotiations will be well underway and covering technical topics around banking and finance.
Youth need to be involved in this topic. It is their future that is being discussed, in terms of taxes that will be collected and social systems funded, as well as more generally the EU that will be built.
At the same time, youth participation is low in Europe. A 2014 European Parliament post-election survey found that only 28% of 18-24 year olds and only 35% of 26-39 year olds voted in the European Parliament elections, with only 50% of young people feeling they had enough information to vote.
Through a youth exchange bringing together young people from Germany, Italy, Spain and Poland, we want to inspire 24 young people from across the EU to be engaged in and active advocates for an open and transparent Europe and to use this experience to provide information to and encourage other young people to also get involved and make their voices heard. This is a highly technical topic, but we feel one that can be communicated easily if people are given the right tools.
Supported by coaches and mentors, these young people will spend 6 days in Berlin learning from and with each other, exchanging their experiences and understanding how they can become young European advocates for transparency and open governance and encourage others to get involved in the debate. They will also have the opportunity to meet civil society organisations working on this topic and learn about their work on transparency and open governance, as well as showcase their work and plans to them and to each other.
“Nova- Center for Social Innovation (known as Novact) is an independent, non-governmental and non-profit institute operating at the interface between Human Rights promotion and the development of innovative approaches to nonviolent conflict transformation.
Established in 1999, we have 15 years experience of projects on non-violent activism Our global roster provides on-call available experts analysts and diplomats to support local, national and international peacebuilding, civil strengthening and peace engagements. Part of our work involves support young activists to be more engaged and more involved in policy and law making.
Established in 2013, Riparte il futuro is a non profit digital-first organisation dedicated solely to fighting corruption and its consequences, including high youth unemployment and low foreign investment in both Italy and the EU.
Our mission is to create a strong culture of the rule of law, empower young people in the prevention of and in the fight against corruption, and stimulate public institutions to develop new tools to urgently address the issue. Through our website we have a network of over 1.1 million users and a digital space for citizens to share their voice and re-engage with political institutions.
The Stefan Batory Foundation (SBF)’s mission is building an open, democratic society – a society of people aware of their rights and responsibilities, who are actively involved in the life of their communtity, country and international society. Since 2000, the Foundation has also run the Public Integrity Programme (earlier the Anti-Corruption Programme). The Programme focuses on efforts to ensure that the transparency of the legislative process and opening it up to the voice of citizens, the limitation of the risks of corruption, nepotism and cronyism linked to conflict of interest in public life, to strengthen the role and legal protection of whistleblowers. The programme team monitors and analyses processes and events which affect the integrity of public life. We make proposals and recommdenations aiming at improving the standards of public life and curbing corruption. We take measures to develop, disseminate and implement solutions which comply with the standard of good governance and accountable government. In our activity we cooperate with other organisations and institutions both in Poland and internationally. We are among others a member of the Coalition for Open Government and the UNCAC Coalition. The Foundation is the Polish chapter of the Transparency International movement.