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From June 17 to 21, 150 Europeans from 40 countries will meet near Peles Castle (Rumania) to elaborate proposals on Governance, Work, Migration and the Rural World. On the evening of the 21st, in Trei Brazi, amid beautiful mountains -- see pictures at we shall beat the "drums of peace" to interweave us with the other continental meetings for a more responsible, plural and united world.

After several months of remote discussions in 4 thematic electronic forums, we elaborated a list of themes to deal with in the European Continental Meeting.

1. Governance. Building a European public opinion on the identity of European citizenship and on the autonomous role of civil society. What institutional form should it take: active subsidiarity, separation of powers, new forms of direct democracy? What about a common foreign and defence policy? What should be the political management of its economy in a globalised world? In the European constituent process, what is the solution to the conflict between European rights and the rights of the Nation-States? Is the welfare state an instrument of democracy in solidarity, a basis for a European civilisation project?

2. Work. The key question lies in elaborating alternatives that place economy at the service of man: employee share-holding; self-employment with local support; flexible work-time and job security; minimum basic income for all; protection against the impacts of globalisation; exchange networks; meaning and use of leisure time; the role of informal work; consumption as a factor of pressure on companies to adopt ethical and sustainable production.

3. Migration: it affects inter- and intra-national relations; and not only South / North. The causes of migrations: a personal or family decision favoured by the global context, by the economic and political conditions of the home countries and by the reception conditions and necessities of the host countries. What type of codevelopment can be a " remedy" to migration? Can borders be closed and why should they be? Is there a lack of manpower in countries with unemployment? Do the images of immigrants include their contributions, not only their economic ones? or only the fantasies (invasion, loss of cultural and national identity.)? Are we moving toward a multicultural or intercultural society? How can we live together? What rights should we share? Should rights depend on residence or on nationality?

4. The Rural World presents new challenges: the contribution of farmers to a sustainable Europe but in solidarity with other countries. Beyond agrarian production, what economic, social and environmental roles should farmers play? How can these roles be integrated with sustainable development? On the basis of which principles should Europe be enlarged to become unified? What model of integration and what relations should it establish with the rest of the world? In a few decades, the evolution of the systems of agricultural production have moved us, in Europe, from"being afraid of not eating" to " being afraid of what we eat." The debate on eating habits it inseparable from health and lifestyle models.

More soon!

Martí Olivella

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