To evaluate the progress of the Alliance in Europe, we can quote Betty Nguyen, who did a recent survey on the subject: “.. . . This experimentation of a European public debate . . . was pursued in the framework of the 2000-2001 Assembly process with the June 2001 European Continental Meeting in Peles. It is flagrant to note that the four themes identified for the meeting (democratic governance for Europe, work and social organization, rural world and sustainability, migrations and multicultural citizenship), which emanated from the views of the active European Allies on the challenges of Europe, matched some of the working themes of the FPH Programs. But in practice, there was no real cross-Program work. It is just as flagrant to note how much these themes still match, three years later, and in the new context of the war on Iraq and the imminence of the European enlargement, the major challenges of the European construction.
It is extremely difficult, or even impossible, to appreciate the results, the impacts, and the effects induced by these dynamics. When the FPH played the initiating role (Barcelona99, Peles Meeting), it may have condemned itself to backing the follow-up to these initiatives, something it was not able (or competent?) to do. In this hypothesis, was not the absence of visible follow-up (beyond the relations established among some participants) foreseeable? Should this have been the vocation of the FPH?
But the FPH has not only been an initiator, it has also been solicited to back European networks presented and implemented by French organizations (for example, the Network of European Journalists on Social Exclusion, the Center of Young Leaders in Social Economy). In fact, the weight of the French contacts in the FPH Directory (58% are European, 67% of which are French) and that of the agreements signed with French organizations (between 1999 and 2002, 64% of the agreements were signed with Europeans, 76% of which were French) confirm that the share of mediation by the French in Europe has been important.”
Beyond the FPH Programs, several groups and institutions in Europe have answered the Call for Initiatives, with a large assortment of work programs: translation and circulation of the Charter in the Balkans, building of a network of responsible shareholders, construction of a European network for access to food by marginalized populations, promotion of economic ethics and responsible consumption through quality social dialogue, implementation of the Proposals on education, promotion of local and regional citizenship, debate on public utilities, etc.
It may be that because of the historic weight of FPH partnership with the French-speaking world, underscored in the above excerpt, not many initiatives have succeeded in Northern and Eastern Europe. Despite efforts made to kindle participation of the Allies in these regions, the Alliance remains limited to Southern Europe (besides the initiative in the Balkans) and has not managed to enlarge much beyond France and the French-speaking part of Belgium. The scarcity of Allies in Germany and in the United Kingdom is significant.