European Social Model revisited: Changes and challenges in the debate on the European Social Rights Pillar

FEPS Office. Rue Montoyer 40. 1000 Brussels

FEPS Next Social Europe lunch debate: European Social Model revisited: Changes and challenges in the debate on the European Social Rights Pillar

Wednesday, 19th October 2016 between 12.30 - 14.30

FEPS Office at Rue Montoyer 40, 4th floor, 1000 Brussels


It is our great pleasure to invite you herewith to the 6th FEPS Next Social Europe lunch debate, which devoted to the theme “European Social Model Revisited: Changes and challenges in the debate on the European Social Right Pillar” is scheduled to take place in our premises next Wednesday, 19th October 2016 between 12.30 - 14.30.

The initial motivation to hold this particular debate had been connected with the fact that June this year marked exactly a decade since the last report on “The European Social Model for the future” was adopted by the European Parliament. It called for a profound reform, which would ensure that the underpinning core values are translated into modern principles. This would result bring about a set of up-to-date European policies, paving the way to Social Europe resonating in gaining citizens support for the European Union in the 21st century.

While ten years passed, many of the recommendations have proven hard in implementation. That has been the case especially in the aftermath of the 2008 crisis, which imposed difficult political choices and which prompted several actions resulting in retrenchment of the ambitions. But what has been extensively tough and unpopular direction, can potentially now be reconsidered or even abandoned, should the window of opportunity at hand be used. That window is the preparation towards the celebration of the Rome Treaty anniversary next year and herewith the new, highly relevant thread of the debate ahead of it concerning the European Social Rights pillar.

And that is why FEPS, together with its two partners - Policy Network and Renner Institut - is holding the upcoming debate to  examine in how far the moment is defining, in how far the changes are feasible and in what way they should be designed in order to restore the primacy of the agenda of equality, opportunity, prosperity and welfare for all.

The seminar is organised in cooperation with Jutta Steinruck, MEP and S&D Coordinator at EMPL, who is going to be joined at the panel by:

- Proinsias de Rossa (former MEP and co-rapporteur of the EP report on “European Social Model for the future” in 2006)

- Professor Dimitris Tsarouhas of Bilken University (author of the “Rethinking the European Social Model” article published within the FEPS Next Left vol. 10)

- Professor James Wickam (author of: "Unequal Europe, Social divisions and social cohesion in an old continent”)

- Giorgi Pirinski (MEP, S&D Group)

- Ernst Stetter (FEPS Secretary General)

- Ania Skrzypek (FEPS Senior Research Fellow)

and others.

Around the table we will have an honour to welcome already confirmed representatives of the closed seminar taking place earlier that day from academia, as also from: ETUC (European Trade Union Confederation), ETUI (European Trade Union Institut), DGB (Deutsche Gewerkschafts Bund), OGB (Oesterreichische Gewerkschafts Bund), OSE (Observatory on Social Europe), Social Platform, European Youth ForumEurofund, Solidar, YES (Young European Socialists), PES (Party of European Socialists) and S&D (Socialists and Democrats at the European Parliament).

The discussion will therefore enable exchange of views, aiming at providing a constructive contribution to the process and the S&D Conference “The pillar of Social Rights - Shaping the Social Heart of Europe” that is held the day after.