February 16, 2017
Welcome to the Live-Blog of the 1989 Generation Initiative’s launch conference 2017, Tackling Populism. Updates from the whole 2 days of conference will be posted here, along with comments from delegates, interventions from experts, and much much more.
And with the end of the debate comes the end of the conference. Thank you all for reading this live-blog and for those who attended the conference, it has been a fantastic two days. Safe travels home!
Nationalism today isn’t about being against other nations, but against globalism and transnational entities such as the Union, notes Kaldor
“It’s absolutely key to work trans-nationally”. Thankfully for the Initiative, that’s in our DNA!
Face-to-face interaction is key, says Kaldor
The strangling of the European interest was brought about by the crowning of the European Council at Europe’s head, Alemanno argues
The European interest is not a sum of the national interests of this continent, but something entirely separate, says Alemanno
Not enough perhaps
A penny for every time we’ve heard the word populism this evening?
Is that what we have in Europe today however?
In a healthy democracy, making your voice heard is something to be lauded and encouraged, says Alemanno
You need to reach out to people, says Legrain. You won’t win the political debate through protest alone
It’s respecting people to disagree with them when you think they are wrong, says Kaldor
Elections lack politicians into a certain mindset in Europe, says Kaldor. They lack vision and perhaps principles
How are better politicians in Europe better when all the politicians in Europe want to represent national interests? Another audience question
Have the centre-left and right mainstream parties even recognised the rise of populism in Europe, asks a member of the audience?
If Europe is dead as a liberal project, then its dead entirely. The heart of Europe is liberal, says Legrain
Liking things on facebook is no substitute for voting, or being politically active, says Legrain
International relations is still based on a competitive Realpolitik. Europe cannot bend to this path, says Kaldor. It needs to wield power legitimately
“Is Europe as a liberal project dead, and should it be?”
What is this ‘identify yourself’? – time for the Q&A!
Direct democracy is not the way, says Alemanno; we must instead reinvigorate representative democracy, and make is representative of the citizens
Are we all Alemanno’s theoretical ‘Barbara’?
‘We need to actually act ourselves – we need to empower ourselves by taking matter into our own hands. No one else is going to do it for us’
Alberto Alemanno wants us to consider our lives and contemplate why we do the things we do – he wants, as he says, to provoke us. To thought and, maybe, to action
Alberto Alemanno raises the issue of the gap between liberals’ concerns about the rise of populism, and what they actually, actively do about it
Legrain says we need to make people feel safer and more comfortable with their place in the EU – can we do this without undermining the key pillars of liberal democracy however?
Pandering to the populists isn’t the way forward – it only validates and empowers the populists themselves. Nor can political problems be solved technocratically
“Europeans fear that the future for themselves, and their children, will be worse” – Philippe Legrain dissecting populism’s rise in Europe
European far-right populists are brothers in arms with Russia’s Vladimir Putin, and America’s Donald Trump, says Legrain
The Fall of the Wall in ’89 was a personal event for Philippe Legrain
Prof. Kaldor believes Greece is the crux of the course of our history; if we can save Greece, we’ll save Europe, if we can’t, then Europe might be lost
We need a global progressive movement in politics to challenge the discourse and forces of the populist far-right
The communist governments decided to swap their political position for wealth. They went from apparatchiks to oligarchs
The ‘post-1945 generation’ went wrong by taking social justice for granted, argues Mary Kaldor
Mary Kaldor says the events of 1989 were part of her defining intellectual and political moment
European peoples, whether workers or freelancers, are demanding protection. They will only listen to the populists if they are the only ones responding to their demands
Populists – they take existing problems, amplify them, and then give immediate, simple solutions
Is liberalism inherently attached to democracy? Or can they exist separately?
Are there any more common, shared values? Sandro Gozi thinks perhaps not
A divide has formed between ‘us’ and ‘them’ – us being ‘the normal people’, and them being the experts and the academics. The ‘metropolitan elites’
While globalisation has helped expand the middle class dramatically across the world, the middle-classes in Europe have suffered in many ways as globalisation has progressed, says Sandro Gozi, Italian Under-Secretary for European Affairs
Michael Cottakis introducing the debate and our illustrious speakers – Sandro Gozi, Mary Kaldor, Philippe Legrain and Alberto Alemanno
And we come to the final part of the conference – the public debate in the LSE Old Theatre. Stay tuned for what promises to be a fascinating discussion
Thanks to all!
And yes, the staff get some love too
European Institute and Commission have been invaluable in putting on this event
Thanks to everyone who came! The initiative could not do its work without the delegates and experts who attended
Europeanists need to speak the language of the average person, not technocratic, legalistic or academic. We need to reach people who do not engage with the EU on a daily basis. They need to understand it
European values need to be built and instilled in every generation – this will not just develop on its own
We need transnational lists, says the citizen-representation roundtable
Citizens, not governments, should decide how to spend some EU structural funds
European Citizens’ Initiative needs to be reformed. The Commission shouldn’t be responsible for reviewing them, the Parliament should instead be able to decide what gets into the legislative process and what doesn’t
Give them the right of legislative initiative?
Amplflying citizens’ voices roundtable argues national parliaments need to engage their citizens when it comes to the EU directly
Europe can’t just be about classes, it has to be about experiencing Europe in our everyday lives
Might take some time – national governments don’t like their toes being tread on!
Europeans need to be taught about Europe in school, and about European citizenship
Europe needs a ‘Duke of Edinburgh’ award of its own; allowing young European students and pupils to engage with civil society and create a project which teaches them about Europe
Education roundtable up now. What do we need to learn?
Europe sounds like a propaganda machine right now – this needs to change. It cannot be to do with the institutions but what makes the European people, the individuals, ‘European’
The media sphere needs to be brought to the European level
There’s no one-size-fits-all message which will appeal to everyone
People struggle to communicate with each other as much as Europe fails to communicate with people. Our communication strategy needs to be horizontal, not vertical
There’s no silver bullet to rescue Europe’s image among its citizens
Now, Communicating Europe roundtable
Europe needs to provide a vision of this Union, how the people relate to it and relate to migrants, family, refugees and security. We need to engage people’s emotions as well as their brains
Those eagle-eyed among you might have noticed this means cutting out the member-state governments. And you’d be right
Local authorities need to be connected to a European level of asylum policy so that they can be distributed in the most efficient manner possible
Sovereignty and intelligent asylum policy means having borders with integrity – which are defended and which can be controlled properly as to who enters and who leaves
Migration roundtable now!
Civilian instruments; prevention, such as counter-terrorism, cyber-security (both need more funding and attention); and management of conflict, such as the European Defence Agency (which needs to play a bigger role, and more actively coordinate European defence & security)
Development aid needs to be better coordinated – their is a lot of aid money in Europe but little coordination, for example in unstable areas in our neighbourhood such as Lebanon
And now we have the stability and conflict roundtable
Can the private sector can serve the public interest? The digital affairs roundtable believe this could be so
Information needs to be more expansively spread among peoples who are not aware of their rights and freedoms pertaining to them and their fears
Too many fears to discuss; sources of fear are pervasive in the Union. Drives people into the arms of populism
Digital affairs up next – a lot of talk about fears in this roundtable
Centralised apprenticeship system at the European level for recognition of vocational qualifications, working in cooperation with national-level funding and organisation
Vocational training also needs to be made a priority, solving some of the underlying problems causing populism, including unemployment
Further education exchanges should be instituted by the Union; through this we can create a sense of Europe and European identity
Labour mobility round table argue that whilst disadvantaged communities can perceive some threats from high levels of migration, they need to be made to see the real benefits of labour mobility
And a few more logistics…
The conference is coming to an end – but the cycle is only just beginning
And the plenary begins!
With the in-depth discussions over, it’s time to head to the plenary. What have we come up with?
Coffee break now! Let’s see what we’ve learnt so far. Anything interesting? Tweet about it at our hashtag 89ersTP
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And don’t forget the keynote debate this evening; a more public version of today’s deliberations with Sandro Gozi, Mary Kaldor, Alberto Alemanno & Philippe Legrain! Don’t miss it!
Now we look at the itinerary – remember you have this in your folders!
From inspiring speeches…to logistics. The best part!
If people are left powerless, they will seek change with a vengeance
Daniel Ambrus, Head of Communication, Networks and Partnerships at the European Commission representation to the UK, emphasises to the delegates and leaders the clear potential threat and danger of populism
Jennifer Jackson Preece, of the European Institute, talks the politics of hope over the politics of fear peddled by the populists
The European Commission and the LSE’s European Institute have made possible our ability to, just perhaps, Tackle Populism
This is the most serious crisis Europe has faced since the Second World War – we need to seize the moment if Europe is to survive.
Are we ready?
Michael Cottakis, President of the Initiative, is now introducing the second day of the conference to delegates and leaders
“All Europeans should have the same opportunities to succeed; whether they’re from Greece, Germany, Italy, Sweden” – Michael Cottakis
Purpose of the 1989 Generation Initiative – for the young minds of Europe born around 1989 to seize the moment, reinvigorate and redefine the European Project
And we’re off!
Good morning and welcome everyone to the live-blog of the 1989 Generation Initiative’s launch conference of 2017: Tackling Populism. We’ll be having updates from throughout the day from all the participants, so stay tuned to this space!
Good morning everyone, and welcome to the live-blog of the 1989 Generation Initiative’s launch conference for 2017; Tackling Populism