News > The European Movement International in 2021

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  • 21st December 2021 - 17:15 UTC

The European Movement International in 2021

The year that will be coming to pass soon had many ups and downs, but we were yet again reminded of the importance of European solidarity & cooperation and supporting those in need while defending and strengthening democracy in times of crisis.

We strived to do our part through our advocacy, communications, events and networking.

We applied creative and innovative approaches, made the most of new technologies and cutting edge research and teamed up with our members and partners to promote our common goals. We organised a range of online activities and utilised the EMI’s communications channels to strengthen the voice of civil society in Europe, promote European cooperation in these trying times, reach out beyond our usual audience and increase citizens’ engagement with the EU. We increased our advocacy efforts and took an active part in the Conference on the Future of Europe, through the EMI’s representatives in the Plenary and by utilizing the extensive European Movement International Caucus.

Below is a summary of our work. We look forward to what 2022 has to bring.

Our Projects

Listen to Europe

After supporting Brussels-based networks of civil society organisations in strengthening their messaging and communications in 2020, testing campaigns from 19 European CSOs and institutions that were run ahead of the European elections 2019, and in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, in 2021 we have investigated drivers of citizens’ behaviour as well as the main topics and narratives present on social media in each of the eight project countries. We have examined the attitudes of European citizens towards the EU and democracy, along with their opinions about specific issues like the environment, immigration, gender equality and human rights. The findings were presented at online events — Democracy Tables — to help enhance civil society’s communication and outreach capacities. LTE will continue to support more effective and targeted European narratives, message framing and audience outreach by sharing the data with like-minded CSOs, implementing digital communications outreach in eight EU countries, and cooperation with National Councils and civil society partners.

Women of Europe Awards

For the sixth year running, the 2021 edition of the Women of Europe Awards, organised with the support of the European Women’s Lobby, was held online this year and featured four inspiring winners: Angela Merkel (Woman in Power), Jenny Rasche (Women in Action), Özlem Türeci (Woman in Business) and Great Thunberg (Woman in Youth Activism). See more on our website and social media campaign.

Talking Europe

We partnered with the European Commission to continue a series of online discussions launched in 2020, entitled  Talking Europe, which aims to foster debate on the EU’s work and the effect it has on the lives of citizens. This year’s one-to-one discussions featured Themis Christophidou, Director General of DG for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture; Ditte Juul Jørgensen, Director General of DG Energy; Raffaele Mauro Petriccione, Director General of DG CLIMA; Salla Saastamoinen, Acting Director General of DG JUST; Monique Pariat, Director General of DG HOME, as well as Maciej Popowski, Acting Director General of DG NEAR.


In 2021, we continued the series of online discussions entitled EuropeanChats launched in 2020, gathering members of our network from across Europe for informal discussions on different issues surrounding the COVID-19 crisis from their perspectives, including national responses, the need to sustain European cohesion and solidarity, the role of civil society in a public health crisis, and the socio-economic impact of the pandemic. This year’s discussions featured the European Movement offices in Spain and Serbia, as well as SGI Europe, ETUC, CEMR, Europa Nostra, GESAC, the European Youth Forum, AEGEE and ALDA.

Our Policy and Influencing

The past year has presented Europe and civil society with new challenges along with familiar ones. Through our thought leadership and advocacy efforts, we worked to put together and promote positions and ideas from the European Movement International network to address the challenges Europe is facing and advocate for a future for our continent built on the founding principles of the EU.

Bringing our member organisations together in our Political Committees, we developed new policy positions and utilised existing ones. Take a look at our main policy proposals that guide our current work and get in touch if you would like to join us or support our work. 

We used our policy positions to reach and engage different stakeholders. 

  • Advocacy vis-à-vis policy-makers and institutions. We sent 16 e-mail blasts to policy makers and we reached 5500 people including 600 MEPs, 27 Permanent Representatives, and 875 senior stakeholders from the EU’s institutions and international organisations.
  • Policy emails. We sent 26 e-mail blasts promoting our policy positions and we reached a very diverse audience including 600 MEPs, 27 Permanent Representatives,  875 senior stakeholders from the EU institutions, Member States and international organisations, and 2800 stakeholders from EMI’s member organisations and European civil society organisations, think tanks, research centres, and social partners.

Democracy, Values and Citizen Participation

We published and used for our advocacy and communication:

To promote our positions and engage relevant stakeholders we also held:

The Rule of Law

We published and used for our advocacy and communication:

To promote our positions and engage relevant stakeholders we also held:

The Digital Transition

We published and used for our advocacy and communication:

To promote our positions and engage relevant stakeholders we also held:

European Green Deal

We published and used for our advocacy and communication:

To promote our positions and engage relevant stakeholders we also held:

Enlargement and Western Balkans

We published and used for our advocacy and communication:

To promote our positions and engage relevant stakeholders we also held:


We published and used for our advocacy and communication:

To promote our positions and engage relevant stakeholders we also held:

  • The ninth edition of the event series Talking Europe featuring Monique Pariat, Director General of DG HOME to tackle the developments in the New Pact on Migration and Asylum, the Schengen Area, migration and integration

Europe in the World

We published and used for our advocacy and communication:

To promote our positions and engage relevant stakeholders we also held:

  • A joint event with Raiffeisen Bank International on “The EU’s Place in the New Geoeconomic Order” to discuss the recent developments and future challenges of the EU’s internal market vis-à-vis the international arena

Our Communications

This year has been another record-breaking year! Our content and campaigns have reached more Europeans than ever – 9.5 million to be exact – and our joint campaign with our national councils, ‘Together for Europe’, reached a further 6.5 million people, actively engaging more people than ever. By using and applying audience data and research, we have been able to create tailored content reaching out to and engaging not only our core pro-European supporters, but also more broadly, citizens that usually operate outside our usual audience. Correspondingly, we have seen exponential growth in our engagement across all platforms this year, and we are happy to have been able to contribute to building the capacity of several of our National Councils to do the same.

Together for Europe Campaign (Europe Day)

Following the success of last year’s campaign, this year our network’s Europe Day celebrations went fully digital and consisted of three different campaign videos, as well as several locally produced campaign content. The campaign was intended to reach and influence not only our base audiences, but also the ‘persuadables’ who operate just outside our normal spheres of communication, and was promoted in 20 countries and in 20 languages.

With this campaign we wanted to play our part in the work to spread a sense of European solidarity and counter the abundant negative messages, narratives, and fake news that are circulating online, especially regarding the pandemic. We were also able to effectively expand our base audiences and increase the number of European citizens we reach with pro-European and pro-democratic messages. Several of the campaigns went viral with thousands of likes, comments and shares.

Also, the response from our participating National Councils has been very positive, with most reporting that they have been able to reach new audiences and gain a great deal more interactions and followers on their social media channels and within their networks.

Women of Europe Awards 2021

The Women of Europe Awards 2021 were well-promoted over our social media channels and received a lot of external interest, reaching a record of at least 2.3 million people on Facebook alone. Thanks to our promotion of the nominees, the shortlisted, the jury, and the winners via social media, we raised awareness throughout Europe for the Awards and the important cause they serve. Key to that was our media partnership with Euronews, as well as our digital partnership with Meta. The outcomes of the ceremony were covered by Euronews, Politico Europe, Euractiv and several national outlets. If you missed it, or want to rewatch it, you can view the full awards ceremony on our website.

Listen to Europe

Our work on Listen to Europe continues to evolve in a great way. This year, we continued developing our extensive database looking at the drivers of behaviours and attitudes of European citizens towards democracy and authoritarianism. Our intention with this work is to equip CSOs with knowledge that will allow them to better communicate with a variety of different audiences, positively engaging people also outside core supporters. The website, www.listentoeurope.info, is being extensively updated and upgraded, not just with new data, but also to enhance the user experience. Moreover, this year, we were also able to test citizens’ outreach campaigns based on the lessons learnt so far, reaching more than 2 million citizens, based on data from public surveys and social media listening in eight countries.

Engaging the European Movement International Network

The European Movement International Network encompasses over 80 member organisations, both National Councils and International Associations, bringing together European civil society, employers, trade unions, NGOs, political parties, local government and academia. This year we worked closely with all member organsiations and brought together our network in various constellations to co-create the direction of the European Movement International.

To that end we held:

  • 2 Federal Assemblies
  • 1 Members’ Council
  • 7 Board meetings
  • 15 Political Committee meetings
  • 14 Working Group meetings

Our Events in 2021

Click here to receive more information about the activities of the European Movement International

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