What are the roots of European identity? What does European identity mean today and how is it related to European integration? How can the Council of Europe help foster positive European identities?

The Debates on European Identity were an initiative of Thorbjørn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, in response to the difficult and challenging times facing European societies today. Building on the format of the previous Democracy debates, and enlarging the thematic scope, they contributed to discussing the current state of thinking and dynamics behind the concept of European Identity. They were intended to serve as a catalyst of ideas and concepts for the future of Europe, thereby contributing to building constructive European identities.

Co-organised by the Council of Europe and the Ecole Nationale d'Administration (ENA), the debates on European identity featured eminent personalities from politics, civil society and academic world. Each time, speakers addressed a different way the complexity of issues related to European identity.

All European Identity Debates

Tenth debate

Adam D. ROTFELD, former Foreign Minister of Poland, on 'European Values and Search for Identities'

19 May 2014 Strasbourg

In his presentation, Adam D. Rotfeld argued that history and common memory are understandable and natural requirements for search of national identities. Problems appear when history is treated selectively and national memory is decreed by politicians and the institutions they establish. He...

Read More

Ninth debate

Ana PALACIO, former Foreign Minister of Spain, on 'The core EU challenge: democratic deficit or trust deficit?'

11 March 2014 Strasbourg

In her introduction speech, Ana Palacio discussed her two-fold vision of the European identity outlining its external and internal dimensions. As seen from the outside, there is a European brand, synonymous with the European Union and reflecting a strong symbolism of values including human...

Read More

Eighth debate

Tzvetan TODOROV, French essayist, philosopher and historian, on 'In search of Europe'

13 February 2014 Strasbourg

In his Introduction speech, Tzvetan Todorov exposed his vision of European identity. According to him, the growing unhappiness with the European Union (EU) amongst the population should be understood as a response to politicians’ lack of vision for the European project. Interminable debates on...

Read More

Seventh debate

Robert SALAIS, French economist, on 'European identity: The past waiting for a future'

23 January 2014 Strasbourg

What is preventing Europe from becoming a more human and political community? How can we make Europe more open and democratic at all levels? In his introduction speech, Robert Salais referred to two opposing visions for Europe, one, strategic, based on finding common interests between European...

Read More

Sixth debate

Daniel COHN-BENDIT, Publicist and politician, the Greens, MEP, on 'Quo Vadis Europa?'

18 November 2013 Strasbourg

What are the limits of European integration and what responsibilities would national states have in a transnational Europe? Could European identity one day substitute national patriotism? In his introduction speech, 'Quo Vadis Europa?' Daniel Cohn-Bendit exposed his vision of European identity...

Read More

— 5 Items per Page
Showing 1 - 5 of 10 results.

 Concept paper

 Publication "We need to talk about Europe"

  All debates on European identity