For our very first cocktail debate, we were honoured to welcome Mr Jim Mc Mahon, British Labour and Co-operative Party politician, MP for Oldham West and Royton, who spoke of the challenges and opportunities that local governments face in the wake of Brexit. As our moderator Mr Jonathan Carr-West, Chief Executive of LGIU put it, it is difficult to ignore the elephant in the … [Read more...]
In Focus 2017: Revitalising Democracy
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2016 has been a challenging year for Europe. Rising unemployment in many countries, divisions on the attitude towards a historic influx of refugees, economic growth weaker than on other continents, terrorist attacks in various countries and a growing feeling among citizens that the European Union, national governments and politics in general are not always measuring up to the challenges.
Yet, with the year ending on the positive note of a global agreement on fighting climate change, the Executive Board wants to promote a positive and necessary theme for 2016 : Revitalising democracy, or the need to rebuild trust about the potential of our continent and trust in our political life.
March 8, 2017 marks the 106th year that International Women’s Day (IWD) is recognised. IWD is a worldwide event that celebrates the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women, and calls for gender equality. Since full gender equality has yet to be achieved, IWD calls for women across the world to come together to force the world to recognise these … [Read more...]
In AER, we put a strong emphasis on the future of cohesion policy and look for our members to jump in the process! A bit of background... In the last years, AER took part to a number of debates and workshops aiming at a necessary re-thinking of the European cohesion policy and its delivery mechanisms, as well as objectives, tools and assessment criteria. In a first meeting … [Read more...]
The Assembly of European Regions has a long history supporting youth issues, with a particular focus on lifelong learning and economic development since its creation in 1985. A recent example of AER’s dedication to the field is that of its involvement in the “EU Regions - Partners for Youth” workshop that it organised with Harghita County Council (RO) and the Romanian … [Read more...]
The last time Bureau members met, it was the eve of the long-awaited UK referendum; AER was gathered in Bodo (Nordland-NO) for its General Assembly. Words of hope but also concerns were shared by two British politicians, Cllr Roy Perry from Hampshire (AER Vice President for Institutional Affairs) and Mr Brian Greenslade from Devon (Honorary AER member) also long-time AER … [Read more...]
What is the role of the AER network for youth empowerment and employment? The Assembly of European Regions has a history of working on participation and inclusion and more specifically on youth empowerment. Since its creation in 1985 the network has had youth, lifelong learning and economic development in its core topics. This is how for instance the AER youth work placement … [Read more...]
In their meeting in Batumi on 15 September, the Executive Board reviewed the annual theme that naturally took its place from AER's new year's resolution last December. Chosen for 2016, the issue of "Revitalising democracy" is ever more relevant and topical in the current political context and the Executive Board has given the network a strong political impetus by maintaining … [Read more...]
Young people are the future Yet judging by the figures the perspectives are rather gloomy: according to Eurostats, one sixth of all young people were neither in employment nor in education or training in the EU-28 in 2014. In this context early school leaving is a major issue and a threat to social and economic cohesion. AER members regions have been working on this topic … [Read more...]
Cllr Roy Perry (Hampshire-UK) could not attend our General Assembly in Bodø last June due to his responsibilities in the Remain campaign for the UK referendum. However, he sent this video to be presented at the Bureau meeting on June 22 2016. The Bureau was focused on the possibilities that new technologies offer to regional authorities to imporve governance, but was closed … [Read more...]
The AER Bureau in Nordland (NO) on 22 June will address the issue of (R)e-inventing Democracy and the impact of technologies on the democratic process. All member regions are invited to submit amendments to the proposed political declaration. Please use the comment box below, providing the name of your region, to submit amendments or send us an email. (R)e-inventing … [Read more...]
The AER Spring 2016 Bureau (22-24 June, Nordland-NO) will focus on the ways technology helps innovation in democracy, highlighting the disruptive nature of technology and the need to renew existing models. The debate will be lead by key actors from the public and private sectors experienced on topics such as new forms of citizens engagement and participation; big data for … [Read more...]
On 14 April 2016 AER organised the Equal Opportunities Forum on “Women in Emergency situations” in Timis County (RO) in the framework of the Committees’ spring plenary meetings. The Forum gathered around 50 participants from AER member regions, to speak about European experiences, solutions and the regional perspective on this hot topic. As the European Parliament has urged … [Read more...]
Participation requires space as is very well highlighted in this 2010 video from the AER Youth Regional Network. And by space it's not just physical space that is meant, such as meeting rooms, but also space in the institutions, in the decision making process. This is valid for young people but also for society at large: how do we make space for citizens participation? If … [Read more...]
Does social media help deliver better public services and does the use of social media create more open policy processes? What are the current trends and what are valid guidelines for decision makers? These questions are at the heart of a study published by the OECD in 2014 exploring the Social Media Use by Governments. Whereas politicians fairly quickly became aware of the … [Read more...]
Strasbourg, Alsace (F), 10 October 2012 The conclusion is clear: the financial and economic crisis that we are experiencing spares no one, and has political consequences all around the world. This crisis is partly rooted in globalisation and is often associated with populism movements, community decline and with an increasing desire for independence. Regionalisation … [Read more...]