Social Cohesion

"Social cohesion is the capacity of a society to ensure the well-being of all its members, minimising disparities and avoiding marginalisation."

(Report of the High Level Task Force on
Social Cohesion in the 21st century)


The Director General: "What are we about?"

Shared social responsibility: securing trust and sustainable social cohesion in a context of transition, Brussels, 28th February – 1st March 2011

[28th February – 1th March 2011, Brussels, European Commission] The Council of Europehas organised, in partnership with the European Commission, a conference aiming to give a thoroughly European focus to the reflection on the question of responsibilities in forging the future of our designs for democracy, social justice, poverty alleviation, sustainability and communal living.

The event was open to public authorities, researchers, NGOs, civil society, etc.

A “European Charter on shared social responsibilities” is currently being drawn up and has been discussed during the first working day.

The conference has dealt primarily with the following topics: 

the transformations in Europe: social cohesion and shared responsibility, key factors in creating vision and rebuilding confidence in the future;

the need for a concept of shared social responsibility: prospects and obstacles;

mobilising citizens and stake-holders through and for shared responsibilities;

the challenges to placing shared responsibility at the heart of the political agenda

organising ourselves to achieve the objective of well-being for all.


More information...

Symposium on the decision-making process regarding medical treatment in end of life situations, Strasbourg, 30 November and 1 December 2010 

The symposium which the Council of Europe’s Steering Committee on Bioethics (CDBI) held in Strasbourg on 30 November and 1 December 2010 intended to be the starting point for European thinking on the decision-making process regarding medical treatment in end-of-life situations.

The symposium gathered professionals from all relevant disciplines (health professionals, sociologists, lawyers etc.) as well as representatives of patients. The objective of the symposium was, on the basis of the experience of the different persons concerned, to clarify concepts and identify points of convergence which could provide a basis for possible guidelines in that field.

Live broadcast

Launch of European campaign to stop sexual violence against children
Rome (Italy), 29-30 November 2010

The Council of Europe and the Italian Ministry for Equal Opportunities launched on 29-30 November 2010a European campaign to promote legal, educational and other measures needed to combat all forms of sexual violence against children.

The campaign sets a simple rule, called the “Underwear Rule”, that parents are encouraged to teach their children aged 4 to 7 to make them understand their right to set limits, and the need to express their feelings and speak up. The rule is explained in a TV spot, a children’s book, a website and other support materials featuring a character called Kiko.

One in Five Website
The Underwear Rule

Recent Publications

Recently Adopted Recommendations of the Committee of Ministers to member states:

Recommendation CM/Rec(2011)13 on mobility, migration and access to health care

Recommendation CM/Rec(2011)5 on reducing the risk of vulnerability of elderly migrants and improving their welfare

Recommendation CM/Rec(2011)2 on validating migrants' skills

Recommendation CM/Rec(2011)1 on interaction between migrants and receiving societies

Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)11 on the impact of genetics on the organisation of health care services and training of health professionals

Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)6 on good governance in health systems

Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)2 on deinstitutionalisation and community living of children with disabilities
Major Events

Upcoming Events

    9th Council of Europe Conference of Health Ministers
“Child-friendly health care: building a healthy future for and with children”
29-30 September 2011, Lisbon, Portugal

Recent Events

    Seminar and Conference
Shared social responsibility: securing trust and sustainable social cohesion in a context of transition
28th February – 1th March 2011
Brussels, European Commission