Last update: 24 July 2013




Videos of the Dialogue with Commissioner Viviane Reding

Questions submitted by participants in Luxembourg

Discussion Workshop
Webster University Vienna

Discussion Workshop
Diplomatic Academy Vienna

Summaries of the Discussion Workshops in Luxembourg are coming soon!

Information Dossier
European Ideas -
Our Common Future

Description Poster
Webster University Vienna
Diplomatic Academy Vienna

European Ideas -
Our Common Future

Reading materials can be found
at the bottom of this page

last update: 10 May 2013



We give students from all over Europe and beyond
the opportunity to exchange their views
on current EU issues
with politicians, experts and academics.


European Ideas Discussion Workshops establish a platform for dialogue between students, young professionals, politicians and experts. Discussion Workshops give students and young professionals the opportunity to communicate their own ideas about the future of the European Union.

Just like the European Ideas platform, European Ideas Discussion Workshops encourage an open debate about current issues directly affecting the future of the European continent. Our principal aim is to foster the involvement of Europeans in the EU decision-making process as well as dialogue between European Union institutions, representatives and Europeans.

Discussion Workshops involve a continuous follow-up process, with the results of the workshops being published here and further discussion rounds building upon the obtained results. Workshops always feature one general theme to be discussed on the European level in order to compare our views and perspectives.

Why participate?

By participating in the European Ideas - Our Common Future initiative, you have the opportunity to become part of the European Ideas Network consisting of young people from all over Europe wanting to actively shape the future of the European continent. Furthermore, participants have the opportunity to share their ideas with politicians and experts in the field. Through cooperation with European Union institutions, expecially active  Members get the chance to travel to workshops in different European cities. Finally, participants get a participation certificate indicating the theme of the workshop and the experts involved.


Creativity - Solidarity - Empathy

European Ideas discussion workshops focus on the joint output at the end of each session. A balanced discussion that is enriching for everyone involved is our aim.

First General Theme

Democracy in the European Union

  Why is democratic decision-making important in a political system? What is the aim of a democracy? To what extent does the European Union have to be democratic in order to achieve its goals? Many would argue that economic integration would eventually push forward political integration. Do you agree? Finally, to what extent do European countries have to be politically unified in order to defend the interests of their citizens?  


Philippe Ternes is the Initiator and Administrator of the European Ideas - Our Common Future initiative.

Contact: philippe.ternes

Workshop Leaders

Philippe Ternes is currently organizing Discussion Workshops in Luxembourg and surrounding cities in cooperation with the Representation of the European Commission.

Nareg Seferian and Vera Kadas are European Ideas Discussion Workshop Leaders at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, Austria.

Yuri Fenopetov, Andriana Ballerin, Christoph Fleischmann and Philipp Freund are European Ideas Discussion Workshop Leaders at Webster University, Vienna, Austria.

Michael Dellmour is European Ideas Discussion Workshop Leader at the Faculty of Law of the University of Vienna, Austria.

Recent Workshops

In cooperation with the Representation of the European Commission in Luxembourg:

Tuesday 14 May, "Maison de l´Europe", with M. Camille Gira, Member of Parliament, on´How can we restructure our energy supply in times of climate change and "peak oil"?`

Tuesday 11 June, "Maison de l´Europe", with M. Claude Frisoni, Director of the Cultural Centre Abbaye Neumünster,
on "La culture comme facteur de développement durable"

Monday 8 July 2013, European Court of Justice, with M. Jean-Jacques Kasel, Judge at the European Court of Justice

Submit your sub-questions!

Which questions do you find particularly interesting on the general theme 'Democracy in the European Union'? Send us your reflections and get the unique opportunity to participate in our European Ideas Discussion Workshops.





Discussion Workshops in Luxembourg



Discussion Workshop
at the Diplomatic Academy Vienna

Have a look at our Facebook page
to see more photos!


Discussion Workshop
at Webster University



   Reading Materials


Darnstädt, Thomas; Schult, Christoph; Zuber, Helene. “How to Forge a Common European Identity”. Der Spiegel, 12 February 2011. 

Duff, Andrew. Second report by the Committee on Constitutional Affairs. European Parliament, Legislative Observatory, 02 February 2012.

European Parliament. “United in diversity: Rules for the European Parliamentary elections.” 2009 elections – Institutions. 12 May 2009.

European Union Democracy Observatory.

Fox, Benjamin. “Starting gun sounds for EU elections 2014.“ EU Observer, 9 August 2012.

Hix, Simon. „The Effect of Transparency on Legislative Behaviour in the European Parliament.“ European Ideas. 27 January 2012.

Hughes, Kristy. “EU democracy in crisis: mired in a perfect storm or rebounding?”, 16 January 2012.

Mahony, Honor. “EU commission to outline plans for political union”. EU Observer, 22 May 2012.

Micossi, Stefano. “Democracy in the European Union.” Centre for European Policy Studies. February 2008.

Sampol, Célia. “Andrew Duff proposes creation of transnational list.“ Europolitics, The European Affairs Daily. 26 April 2010.

Simms, Brendan. Towards a mighty union: how to create a democratic European superpower. European Ideas. 22 April 2012.


    Diplomatic Academy Vienna (28 January 2013)

European Ideas. Subquestions by the participants in the Discussion Workshop on 28 January 2013. European Ideas, 25 January 2013

Riegler, Peter. "Can a European democratic system exist without European Parties?" Preparation Paper for the Discussion Workshop on 28 January 2013. 25 January 2013. 

Busek, Erhard, Dr. "Vereinigte Staaten von Europa - Traum oder Täuschung?"  EU - Infothek, 27 June 2012. (German)

Busek, Erhard, Dr. "Dr. Erhard Busek über die Möglichkeiten, Europa neu zu gestalten". FH Technikum Wien, 8 April 2011. (German)

Kowalsky, Wolfgang. "The European Union´s social failure". OpenDemocracy, 4 December 2012

Deutsche Welle. Report: Islamophobia Hinders Muslim´s Lives in Europe. Deutsche Welle, 18 December 2006.

Phillips, Connolly & Davies. "EU turning blind eye to discrimination against Roma, say human rights groups". The Guardian, 30 July 2010.

Blair, Tony. "It´s time for the direct election of a European President." New Perspectives Quarterly, Winter 2013.


    Webster University (4 December 2012)

Lord. "Some indicators of the Democratic Performance of the European Union and how they might relate to the RECON models." RECON Online Working Paper 2008/11

Majone. "Europe´s democratic deficit: the question of standards." European Law Journal, Vol. 4, No. 1, March 1998, pp. 5–28

Moravcsik. "In defence of the "democratic deficit": Reassessing legitimacy in the European Union." JCMS 2002. Volume 40. Number.4. pp.603-624

Follesdal, Hix
. "Why there is a democratic deficit in the EU: a response to Majone and Moravicsik." European Governance Papers.  March 2005