FEPS Weekly Newsletter 21 Oct 2022

📅FEPS Weekly Newsletter
Exciting days in Berlin! PES Congress, PGS, Builders of Progress, migration, fiscal reform & much more!
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Upcoming Events

Last week, one part of FEPS’ team took part in the Progressive Governance Summit 2022 in Berlin, Europe’s largest conference for progressive politics gathering leading politicians, thinkers and strategists from both sides of the Atlantic.

📺 Videos of the live-streamed sessions can be found on this link. More will follow soon.

🧵You can also check the social media dialogue around the #PGS22 and FEPS’ Twitter threads about the following sessions:
  • Panel Solidarity in Times of Crises: Alliances for a Social Europe, with the participation of FEPS Secretary General László Andor: “We must reinforce the social safety net. We need to be ready to support each other not only when the house is burning, it is not enough to discuss these topics when we are in trouble”.

  • Panel Places that Matter: Empowering Regions in the Global Economy, chaired by FEPS President Maria Joâo Rodrigues. “People in some regions feel disempowered and have lots of resentment. During Covid, we prevented the worst, but with the war, energy crisis and inflation, we’re going further in the marginalization of groups in our society. How shall we deal with it?”, this is the question the FEPS President asked speakers, including Anneliese Dodds, Chair of the UK Labour Party. Watch the video.

  • Panel The Future of Coalition Politics, chaired by FEPS Director for Research and Training, Ania Skrzypek: “We started from the mechanics of building coalitions, but we discussed much more, such as the need for integrity and how to build bridges, ending up agreeing on the fact that politics needs a lot of passion!” Watch the video.

📸 Pictures of these panels and more can be found on this link!
PES Congress 2022

Last week, we also travelled to Berlin to participate in the PES Congress.

🧵You can check the social media dialogue around the #PESCongress, FEPS’ Twitter threads about the following sessions and the available videos:

  • FEPS fringe event on enlargement, ‘The future of the European project: enlargement VS deepening?’, chaired by FEPS President Maria Joâo Rodrigues, with the participation of Radmila Šekerinska, Andreas Schieder, Domènec Rui Devesa, Stefan Collignon, Mercedes Bresso and Jo Leinen.

📸 Pictures of these events and more can be found on this link!

Congress resolution here.

Builders of Progress: Europe’s Next Gen survey launch!

On 11 October, we launched Europe’s most extensive youth-focused survey! The Builders of Progress final report launch event concluded a three-year research period, during which 19,000 young Europeans aged 16-38 were surveyed.

The project follows the tradition of FEPS’s long-standing work on researching Millennials and expands it to include Generation Z.

We discussed the project’s results on various topics, including young people’s views on political participation, climate change, equality, EU policies, the war in Ukraine, and the Covid-19 pandemic.

📕Builders of Progress survey
📺 Video of the launch event
📸 Pictures of the launch event
🧵Twitter thread about the launch event and Instagram stories
You can find more about #BuildersOfProgress survey on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and FEPS website, including a series of video pills and country fact sheets.
Disinformation on Migration

Due to disinformation, a majority of Europeans believe that the migrant population in the EU is 16% when it is actually less than half that number! It’s just 7%.

Disinformation distorts perceptions and shapes political discourse. It taps into people’s worries, amplifying them. Manipulated statistics, out-of-context information, and false claims about migrants and refugees are particularly pervasive.

Following the first “Disinformation on Migration” event organised by FEPS, EPC and FES in Brussels, we are launching two new events:
3 – 4 November – Vilnius, Lithuania

The aim of the “Tackling the Rise of Living Costs” conference in Vilnius is to gather key experts and stakeholders to discuss what needs to be done to alleviate the societal burden of the extraordinary rise of living costs. In doing so, the meeting will provide valuable inputs to the progressive forces in the Baltics for further concerted action. The geographic location of the meeting is significant.

In Lithuania and the Baltic region more generally, the inflation shock is one of the highest within the European Union. However, this crisis comes with a disruptive potential for the European political and economic status quo. In other words, we face a real possibility of great transformation of our political and economic regime. What is at stake, therefore, is whether we will be able to both uphold and further enhance our core democratic ideals.
By Silvia Cannas, Matteo Dressler, Charles Howard, Ilaria Nilges and Guillermo Tosca Díaz

We published #BuildersOfProgress – Europe’s most extensive youth-focused research in politics ever conducted. Together with ThinkYoung, over the course of 3 years, we asked 19k young people in Europe about the most pressing issues of our times.

The survey showcases the impact of the pandemic and the war in Ukraine on young people’s views. What are the hopes, concerns, and expectations of Europe’s next generation? Here you can read some of the key findings:

  • 65% of respondents think the EU should stop providing funding to member states that fail to respect human rights and democratic rules.
  • 40% of youth in Europe think reducing pay gaps will have the greatest impact on gender equality in Europe.
  • 69% of young people support an EU-wide minimum wage.
  • 71% of young people want politicians to better communicate to citizens what the EU is doing and how it impacts their daily life.

Specific country fact sheets are also available. Watch the video pills including the main highlights of the survey.

This survey was launched last week, together with a big audience that joined us at FEPS’ headquarters. One part of this event was live streamed, you can find the video here.

FEPS cosigned an open letter to EU leaders calling for them to address the underlying structural problems of our economic system ahead of the Commission’s publication of its orientation paper.

The open letter, initiated by the Fiscal Matters coalition, outlines a vision of a reformed EU economic governance framework that targets the roots of the social and ecological crises. It highlights a crucial time for transformative change in EU policy through adopting a Sustainability and Wellbeing Pact and a new EU fiscal framework that would enable a truly fair, sustainable, and future-fit economy. Read more

This EURACTIV article reflects Builders of Progress data on housing: “Some young Europeans believe that the EU should ensure decent housing for all (69% for, 21% against).” Read more

FEPS, together with Anny-Klawa-Morf Foundation, present a call for participants for the online Training Day Workshop for Social Business. The deadline to apply is 31 October.

The Training Day workshop aims to strengthen the understanding of the importance of social business and to share knowledge about challenges and opportunities for companies and employees working with self-organisation. Read more

📺 Interested on the topic? You can also watch this animated video on social business!
With his confirmation for a third term as Secretary General of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), Xi Jinping will have defeated his opponents – even those who formally applaud unanimously. The extension of his other two positions, that of President of the Republic and that of Head of the Military Commission will be confirmed shortly after.

Since China opened up half a century ago, no one has accumulated so much power, with no limit to the number of terms in office.
Read More
We are living in complex times. There is a war in Europe, there is a cost-of-living crisis, there are rising inequalities and signs of growing social unrest. But these times are also a unique opportunity to write history, to try to serve a greater purpose, and to make a difference.

And hence, while in just a few days the Party of European Socialists (PES) will be celebrating its 30 years jubilee, the question is if the long-awaited, upcoming Congress in Berlin can become a pivotal moment. Will the decisions and actions taken there translate into a grand new narrative, into a modest next chapter, or will the Congress result in just securing a footnote in the chronicles of Europe for the next decades?
Read More
Parliamentary elections in Latvia and Bulgaria:
It was complex, it is complicated
By Jānis Urbanovičs, Georgi Pirinski and Ildiko Otova

On Saturday, 1 October 2022, Latvian citizens went to the polls to elect 100 members of the Saeima. The preceding campaign was incredibly tough and exposed two underpinning processes. First, it evolved around the Russian invasion of Ukraine and its consequences. Despite the country’s straightforward standpoint in solidarity with the victim of the aggression, the discussions about sanctions and European involvement were more divisive.

Almost a quarter of the Latvian population of 1.2 million belongs to the Russian ethnic minority. Many of them have relatives on the other side of the border. Second, the impact of the conflict has been a polarising factor. This resulted in a tectonic shift: four of the five largest parties of 2018 fell below the parliamentary threshold of 5 per cent, this time. One of them was the PES member ‘Saskaņa’ (‘Harmony’). At the same, four new parties made it into parliament, taking places on both the right and left sides of the aisle. The winner, with 19 per cent of the vote, was the ‘New Unity Party’ of the incumbent Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš, who had pledged to continue the current governmental coalition.
Read More
#125 FEPS Talks Podcast

🎙️Ana Sofia Fernandez, President of the Portuguese Platform for Women’s Rights, and Laeticia Thissen, FEPS Policy Analyst for Gender Equality, exchange on the gendered nature of economic policy and governance mechanisms at EU level.

How do budgets mirror political priorities? What is their influence in perpetuating or redressing persisting gender gaps? How do they discriminate based on gendered assumptions about society and the economy? How can they be used as a powerful tool in transforming our societies? To what extent are gender budgeting tools applied in the recovery plans? These are some of the points touched upon as the EU is faced with crisis after crisis affecting women in acutely singular ways.

🎧 Listen to this podcast on Spotify | Apple Podcast | Website

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