Fraternité 2020 promotes European exchange programmes

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A group of EUI researchers are campaigning for greater investment in EU exchange programmes, such as the Erasmus student exchange programme and the European Voluntary Service.

Fraternitè 2020Markus Gastinger, Jeroen Moes and Axelle Reiter – all current or recent researchers within the Department of Political and Social Sciences – are part of the Europe-wide Fraternité 2020 (F2020)  initiative which began collecting signatures in October. F2020 was set up by participants of the 2010 Convention of Young European Citizens in Cluny, France, and went on to be awarded a national European Charlemagne Youth Prize the following year.

The initiative’s principle aim is to increase investment in exchange programmes to 3 per cent of the EU budget from 2014, in addition to promoting language lessons and classes on member states’ culture and history. The group has a target of 1 million signatures by 1 November this year.

Reiter says her experience at the EUI, in addition to studying for a masters in the UK, led her to realise that freedom of movement produced a stronger community and common identity among Europeans.

Moes says getting F2020 off the ground has already been a great achievement, with over 900,000 signatures to go: “It’s the first initiative of its kind and so the organisational aspects were quite daunting. We didn’t have an example to follow, so we had to reinvent the wheel.”

To get involved in F2020, please write to: [email protected]