Discover our Europe (DOE)

Europe for Citizens


Summary of the project

European Identity: a sense of belonging to a community. Identity is a feeling of belonging to a cultural community that gives meaning to who we are through our relationship to other human beings who are members of that community. In that sense it is different from citizenship (belonging to a State) or from an imposed categorization that does not coincide with what we feel. Collective identities are fundamental in the construction of a social practice because it configures the relationship with other human beings in terms of convergence of interests and / or values. Collective identities are built in social practice, they are not pre-established, because they require active adherence.

When we speak of Europe as a space of belonging, on the basis of coexistence, the primary question that arises is that of the existence, or possible existence, of a European identity. In reality, the problems afflicting the European institutions stem in large part from the weakness of that identity. Because although it is true that for the majority of citizens of the European Union there is no explicit rejection of this common identity, identity is reconsidered when, in addition to rights, obligations must be assumed. Conflicts arise when decisions must be made for the benefit of other members of that community that go beyond the historically recognized national, regional or local communities.

According to the Eurobarometer of the European Commission, when asked about their identity, 89% of the citizens of the Union declare that they have a feeling of belonging to their city or region, and 93% to their country. And 56% to the European Union. It cannot be said that there is no European identity, albeit at a significantly lower level, when more than half of Europeans assimilate with the Union. The European identity exists, but it is weak and is concentrated in the professionals and the young.

It is therefore important to strengthen what unites us: a European sport, a European culture, a European higher education, a European science and technology (such as the European Research Council or the European Institute of Technology and Innovation), and European media, which lay the foundations for common practices, leading to shared values across Europe.
For us, the European feeling is a feeling of home, of belonging to a community in which there is no place for discrimination or xenophobia.

Duration of the project: 30 months (1st March, 2020 – 31st August, 2022)