EU-Balkans Civil Society Forum Paris

3 – 4 July 2016

At a moment of existential crisis for Europe, we believe that civil society need to be at the core of a renewed effort and vision to face common challenges.

The Civil Society Forum brings together activists and representatives of civil society from the European Union and the Western Balkans to formulate recommendations for the future of the European project, and integration of the Western Balkans countries.

This forum is organised on the occasion of the 3rd intergovernmental summit of Western Balkans and EU countries to be held in Paris on the 4th July 2016. It follows the Civil Society Forum held in Vienna in August 2015, and in Novi Sad and Belgrade in May 2016, where four main policy areas have been identified as priorities for the Western Balkans region. Migration, climate change and green growth, bilateral disputes and youth cooperation will be part of the Paris Forum Programme and are likely to be discussed by the political leaders.

We also want to address transversal issues of democratic governance, the role of civil society and respect of fundamental rights. The forum is open to other topics, developed on the suggestion of the participants.

The two days of activities will be structured around workshops, dialogue with European and national parliamentarians, cultural activities and an open public citizen’s summit on European solidarity.

The forum is open to all civil society organisation representatives who want to engage in a long term process of collaboration across borders and in the making of strong policy proposals for the future of Europe and the region of the Western Balkans.

The forum is coordinated by European Alternatives, ERSTE Stiftung, European Fund for Balkans, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, Citizens for Europe and the Charles Léopold Mayer Foundation



Location: Maison de l’Europe de Paris, 38 rue des Francs Bourgeois, 75004 Paris

Over the 2 days: photo exhibition in the courtyard of Maison de l’Europe


Sunday July 3

17:30 – Arrival and Registration at Maison de l’Europe

18.00 – Opening reception, Welcome by the coordination team of the Forum, Franz Karl Prüller, Chairman of the Board, ERSTE Foundation. Only on Invitation.

19.00- 20.30 – Opening concert by Rundek Cargo Trio


Monday July 4

8:45 – Opening

Welcome by Catherine Lalumière, President of Maison de l’Europe

Presentation of results from preparatory meetings in Belgrade by Hedvig Morvai, European Fund for the Balkans and Paris by Tobias Flessenkemper, Centre international de formation européenne

Moderated by: Ségolène Pruvot

Setting the scene for the day! Lena Hummel

9:15 – 11:15 – Parallel Workshops for the Elaboration of policy proposals in the following areas:

  • Migration, moderated by Sara Prestiani (ARCI) and Gordana Grujicic (Group 484)
  • Climate change and green growth, moderated by Natasa Kovacevic
  • Bilateral disputes, moderated by Nikola Dimitrov and Senade Selo Sabic
  • Youth cooperation, moderated by Dane Taleski (BIEPAG) and European Grassroots Antiracist Movement
  • Democratic Governance, moderated by Vedran Dzihic and Lorenzo Marsili, European Alternatives

11.15 – 11.30  – Coffee break

11.30 – 12.00 – Gallery of Proposals Walk and Discussion with Members of European and National Parliaments

12.00 – 13.00 – Debate on the Policy proposals with Members of the European Parliament with Pervenche Berès (France, Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats), Ulrike Lunacek (Austria, Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance), Tanja Fajon (Slovenia, Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats), Alojz Peterle (Slovenia, Group of the European People’s Party), Richard Howitt, tbc (United Kingdom, Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats), and Majlinda Bregu (Albania, Chairwoman of European Integration Committee of the Parliament of Albania)

Moderated by: Lorenzo Marsili, European Alternatives

13.00 – 13.30 – Coffee break

13.30 – 14.30 –  Presentation of the recommendations of the Civil Society Summit by representatives of the Civil Society Forum to Harlem Désir, Secretary of State for European Affairs (France), Sebastian Kurz, Minister of Foreign Affairs (Austria) and Sandro Gozi, Secretary of State for European Affairs (Italy, tbc)

Moderated by: Ségolène Pruvot

14.30 – 15.30 – Lunch break

15.30 – 17.00 – Collaborations and next steps – World Café on topics proposed by participants. Moderated by: Lena Hummel

17.00 – 18.00 – Closing session:Discussing next steps and a roadmap of the Berlin process and beyond. Moderated by: Filip Radunovic, ERSTE Foundation

Presentation of Civil Society Recommendations to the Intergovernmental Summit

19.30 – 21.30 – Citizen Summit – What Future for European Solidarity?

As the political leaders meet to discuss the future of European integration, the citizens claim their space in the Maison de l’Europe for their summit. An open and highly participative assembly for a different vision of Europe’s common future.

With the participation of Jasmila Zbanic (Bosnia and Herzegovina, film director and screenwriter), Ulrike Guérot (Germany, political thinker and Founder and Director of the European Democracy Lab), Petrit Halilaj (Kosovo, Germany, artist), Jacques Rupnik (France, Senior Research Fellow, Sciences Po CERI) and Igor Stiks (Bosnia and Herzegovina, United Kingdom, writer and scholar)

Facilitation: Niccolo Milanese, European Alternatives and Felix Henkel, Friedrich Ebert Foundation

Contacts : Djurdja Banicevic,, + 33 (0) 1 43 14 75 75

Looking forwards to your participation!