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  NECE Conference 2018: Marseille calling

NECE 2018 will be held in Marseille in May 2018. For many reasons we have come to the conclusion that a new date for NECE (away from November to May) will be beneficial for organisers and participants alike. And we will have more time this year to take a fresh look at NECE’s potential and redesign aspects of our work and the involvement of the NECE 'community' in planning and implementing the conference. Given the instability and uncertainties we are facing in European and international politics, the importance of France as a key player in Europe and the still undiscovered potential and creativity of French citizenship initiatives we are sure that the conference will attract experts, practitioners and activists not only from Europe but also from the southern side of the Mediterranean with its specials bonds to Marseille. We will try to find a free slot in a wonderful location: Friche La Belle de Mai, is a hub of cultural and artistic activity and a public space embedded in urban Marseille – hard to imagine a better place for a NECE event.
A Save the date message and more information about topics of NECE 2018 will follow within the next weeks. As usual we are happy for your feedback and proposals regarding our conference and our work.

  Liberté, Égalité, LePen Adé!

Just hours before sending out our newsletter we have been receiving the results of the second round of the presidential elections in France: Emmanuel Macron will be the next president of France with a clear majority. Congratulations to our partners and friends in France, in particular to our colleagues from Vote&Vous! Latest comments and analysis on Eurotopics the daily multilingual newsletter on international and European politics here

  IRRESISTIBLE? A symposium on the phenomenon of CORRUPTION

The IRRESISTIBLE? project takes a multi-perspective view of corruption, focusing on its political, social, cultural, historical, religious, artistic, philosophical, civic and journalism-related dimensions. Scheduled to take place from 16-18 June 2017 in Berlin (Germany), the symposium will introduce the topic and offer the opportunity for participants to engage with experts involved in corruption research and the fight against corruption. IRRESISTIBLE? is a cooperative project sponsored by the Federal Agency for Civic Education (bpb) and the Goethe Institute Ukraine. It also receives support from the German Federal Foreign Office.
Find out more here.

  Obituary: Benjamin Barber (1939 – 2017)

Benjamin Barber died on April 24, 2017 in his home in New York City.
An internationally renowned author, political theorist and intellectual, Benjamin Barber brought an abiding concern for democracy and citizenship and ideas and formats of citizenship education in America and other parts of the world.
His most famous books are Strong Democracy (1984, 20th anniversary edition, 2004), the international best-seller Jihad vs. McWorld (1995) and If Mayors Ruled the World (2014).
Ben (as his friends used to call him) was a true friend and supporter of NECE and its aims to connect citizenship educators and democracy activists across borders in Europe and the world. He enriched our conferences such as the one in Warsaw (2011) and in Cordoba (2012) with brilliant speeches and lots of positive and critical energy –also in long informal talks open and accessible for everyone.
His main concern focused on the need for citizenship educators to take a (self)-critical look to their own profession and rethink the formats and impact of their offers in order not to become irrelevant.
To reread one of his speeches in Warsaw in 2011 is rewarding as Ben analyzed deficits and vulnerabilities of democratic societies which today are exploited by new populist and nationalist movements in Europe and the USA.
Benjamin Barber was a true friend, a warm and humorous buddy and a mover and shaker who could inspire like no one else. We will miss him.
More obituaries here: New York Times and Global Parliament of Mayors
(by Christoph Müller-Hofstede)

  Be a partner of More Than Education, a European Citizens’ initiative

The Initiative “More Than Education” was launched by a team of young European citizens and registered by the European Commission on the 6th of October 2016. Now, the European citizens’ initiative invites NECE players to collaborate.
Find out more here.

  Wanted: Your contribution to the NECE Newsletter!

You’re looking to get involved in citizenship education in Europe or North Africa? You already initiate projects aimed at promoting democratic values and tolerance in your country or region? You think NECE is right or wrong about a specific issue, and want to start a debate? Tell us about it! Here at the NECE Newsletter we love hearing from you! Send your ideas to:


Welcome to a new section of the newsletter, where our aim is to give European intellectuals and practitioners of Citizenship education a voice. What’s your assessment of the current situation in Europe? What effects are political developments having on citizenship education? In this issue, we’ve decided to get the ball rolling with statements from:

  Tatjana Meijvogel-Volk, ProDemos, on election results in The Netherlands

“Working in the area of citizenship education is always a challenging job. Populistic discussions in society might make citizenship education on first sight more difficult. But on the other hand you might conclude as well, that sharp discussion and controversial issues also might work out as a ‘wake up call’ for citizens. The electoral turn out at the Parliamentarian elections in the Netherlands were now quite high (80 percent). That fact is something which we at ProDemos deem as important, independent from the possible outcome.”
Read the interview here.

  Prof. Haci Halil Uslucan, Duisburg-Essen University, Germany, on the outcome and consequences of the Turkish referendum

“The result of the referendum in the Turkey was very close with 51.4 percent against 48.6 percent of the votes in favour of the 'yes' supporters. Despite the massive obstruction and intimidation of the opposition, despite the questionable circumstances – also criticized by the OSCE observers – in which the referendum was held, the lead was so narrow that it must be regarded as a moral victory for the opposition. It remains to be seen whether the opposition will re-consolidate in the next few years, possibly even in alliance with AKP members and supporters who do not want to follow Erdogan's course any longer. We also do not know what impact the economic downturn Turkey is currently experiencing will have on the political landscape in the years to come. I think the glass is still not half empty but half full.”
Read the interview here.

  Tfanen – Tunisie Creative

Funded by the European Union in partnership with the EUNIC network (European Union National Institutes for Culture) and implemented by the British Council, Tfanen – Tunisie Creative encourages growth and empowerment in the cultural sector. Among the programme’s long-term aims are to contribute to strengthening civil society in Tunisia, and to help consolidate democracy and the sustainable professionalization of cultural sectors in the country. Another key objective is to reinforce Tunisia’s creative economy, and back up the role of culture as a vector for social cohesion at local, regional and national levels.
For more information and the call for proposals, click here

  Vote et Vous, France launches Voting Advice Application for French Presidential elections

With Vote&Vous, you can compare your positions with those of the candidates for presidential elections in France. #VoteEtVousPR17
Find out more here.

  FUNKY CITIZENS – An Initiative from Romania

FUNKY CITIZENS builds research-based, data-driven online advocacy tools. These aim to be both educational and actionable, encouraging young citizens to engage in accountability and government responsibility initiatives where they’ll be able to see an impact. By aggregating and educating youth around this series of tools, the initiators are seeking to build up the understanding and human capital necessary to influence more participatory, responsible and transparent democracy in Romania. Ultimately, the project’s goal is to empower citizens in its user-base to influence public sector reform.
Find out more here.

  Participedia – Strengthen Democracy through Shared Knowledge

Participedia harnesses the power of collaboration to respond to a recent global phenomenon: the rapid development of experiments in new forms of participatory politics and governance around the world. The platform provides a low-cost, easy way for researchers and practitioners from across the globe to catalogue and compare the performance of participatory political processes. Participedia is aimed at practitioners, activists, government officials, journalists, social scientists, policy analysts, democratic theorists and other scholars, as well as educators and students.
Find out more here.

  Bodossaki Foundation

Established in 1972, the Bodossaki Foundation is one of the most respected privately owned public-benefit organizations in Greece. The foundation is currently active in four main strategic pillars in the country: education, health, environmental protection and empowering civil society.
Find out more here.


The activists of #PULSEOFEUROPE meet up every Sunday in cities across Europe. At the root of the movement is the idea that in the EU, a clear majority still believes in the fundamental idea of the Union – as well as its potential for reform and development – and doesn’t want to sacrifice the European dream to nationalist tendencies. Its members are standing up and speaking out, and #PULSEOFEUROPE is making a positive, pro-European gesture in response to current nationalist trends!
Find out more here.

  Central European University in Budapest under attack

The members of the Academic Advisory Board of the CEU Institute for Advanced Study have written a protest letter to the Hungarian Minister of Human Capacities Zoltán Balog.
Read the letter here.
Timothy Garton Ash's opinion in the Guardian.

  European Commission 2017 EU Citizenship Report

The European Commission has now published its third EU Citizenship Report, which takes stock of progress since 2014 and presents further actions to ensure that citizens can fully enjoy their rights when working, travelling, studying or participating in elections.
Read the EU Citizenship Report.

  Social Policy in the European Union: State of Play 2016

The 17th edition of ‘Social Policy in the European Union: State of Play’ looks at recent EU and national social policymaking trends. Contributions from leading scholars highlight that ‘crisis’ was the word that best characterized 2016, when tensions in the EU reached hitherto unprecedented levels. In the course of the year, the migration crisis revealed the limits of the bloc’s decision-making capacities, economic weakness showed no signs of letting up, austerity policies and the badly handled socioeconomic Greek crisis turned populations against the EU – just when it needs to come together to respond to the Brexit vote.
For more information and a free download of the report click here.

  Prepare for a New Europe

The paper "Prepare for a New Europe" has been published by the Warsaw-based Stefan Batory Foundation. In the analysis, the author shows how three fundamental paradigms of EU integration have changed, and what implications this process has for both Poland and the EU.
Read more here.

  Mapping Transition in Eastern Europe

Presented by the Transition Dialogue-Network, “Mapping Transition in Eastern Europe” is a book full of people's transition experiences and lessons for civic education from six countries: There was the reunification of Germany, a war in Croatia, uncertainty in Bulgaria, a transformation reset in Ukraine, a long communist shadow in Romania, and an authoritarian setback in Russia. But what do personal stories and personal experiences of transition reveal for practitioners of civic education?
Read the full e-book here.

  Call for Polish and Norwegian Students

POLIN Museum of History of the Polish Jews and The European Wergeland Centre (EWC) offer a 3-day workshop in Norway for teams of students (16-19 years old) and teachers from upper secondary schools in Poland and Norway. The seminar is followed by student-led activities at school. Deadline for applications is May 15, 2017.
Find out more here.

  What happened to France?

Vienna (Austria), 11-12 May 2017

With the conference “What happened to France – From political decomposition to fragments of social reconstruction” the Department for European Policy and the Study of Democracy (DED) pursues a twofold aim: In a first part it is going be analysed how the consolidation of political, institutional and economic structures in France has evolved into a political crisis, preventing political action and structural reform.
Find out more here.

  European Development Days

Brussels (Belgium), 7-8 June 2017

Organised by the European Commission, the European Development Days (EDD) bring the development community together each year to share ideas and experiences in ways that inspire new partnerships and innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges.
Find out more about the EDD here.

  Learning to live together – a shared commitment? Conference on the Future of Citizenship and Human Rights Education in Europe

Strasbourg (France), 20-22 June 2017

The 2nd Evaluation Conference, in accordance with the objectives and principles of the Council of Europe Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights will be hold on 20-22 June 2017 in Strasbourg.
Find out more here.


You can find more current publications on citizenship education in Europe at the NECE website.

You receive the NECE Newsletter because you subscribed and have confirmed that you wish to receive information about the NECE-Networking European Citizenship Education initiative. If you would like to unsubscribe, please click here.

The NECE Newsletter is published regularly and distributed via e-mail. It is available to anyone on the website. The newsletter is published by the Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung (Federal Agency for Civic Education), which is responsible for its content according to definitions laid down by the German Telemedia Act.

Further contact information:
Federal Agency for Civic Education
Adenauerallee 86
53113 Bonn (Germany)

Responsible for the content:
Petra Grüne
Christoph Müller-Hofstede

If you have any questions please e-mail to:

The NECE newsletter contains information about current professional debates in the field of citizenship education in Europe. We hope it will serve as an important tool of communication and co-operation among stakeholders and institutions in Europe actively engaged in citizenship education. Our aim is to increase transparency for national actors in this field and for the growing NECE network.