The idea of public participation on the question of the EU’s future has been particularly championed by French President Emmanuel Macron who spoke about it during his recent address to MEPs in Strasbourg.
The executive is now asking citizens what direction they want the European Union to take in the future.
Speaking at the launch on Wednesday - Europe Day - European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said, “With the European elections around the corner, it is time to decide what the European Union at 27 should be.
“Whatever happens, it must be a Europe built by Europeans.”
He added, “The survey we are launching today puts the question to all Europeans: What future do we want for ourselves, for our children and for our Union? Now is the time for Europeans to make their voices heard, loud and clear, on the issues that concern them and what they want their leaders to do about them.”
The survey is the result of a so-called ‘citizens’ panel’ the Commission convened earlier this month. Hosted by the European Economic and Social Committee, nearly 100 members of the public drafted a 12-question online survey.
A Commission source said, “This unique exercise in participative democracy means that citizens are at the heart of the conversation on the Future of Europe.”
People are invited to submit their views online and the exercise will also run in parallel to the ongoing ‘citizens' dialogues’ organised by the Commission and member states. Almost 700 of these interactive public debates have been held in 160 cities since 2012, and the Commission says it will increase their frequency between now and the European elections in May 2019 with 500 more events.
The citizens’ dialogues follow an initiative from France and the consultation will run until the Sibiu summit on 9 May 2019 in Romania, just a few weeks ahead of the European elections.