intervention  
 
Athens, 22 November 2018 – Reasserting Europe’s values
22/11/2018
 
As a former journalist, our director, Sébastien Maillard, speaks at a round table on the obstacles to freedom of the press in Europe today and the responses to them, in the context of an event organized by the EESC .

The European Economic and Social Committee’s 12th Civil Society Media Seminar will look at European values as part of Europe’s heritage. In the run-up to European elections, panellists will discuss the challenges and burning issues which are stirring contemporary Europe, such as multiculturalism, declining solidarity, growing nationalism and illiberalism. Together with communication professionals, they will explore what civil society can do to foster a Europe which upholds its heritage of values – respect for human dignity and human rights, freedom, democracy, equality and the rule of law.

Debates will take the shape of three thematic panels:

  • European values vs extreme ideologies
  • Is liberal democracy in danger and what does this mean for Europe?
  • The future role of organised civil society in defending a democratic, value-based, united Europe.

The seminar is principally directed to journalists, communications and media experts and press officers from civil society organisations representing employers, workers and other social, occupational, economic and cultural organisations across Europe.

Participation is on invitation only.

 

Simultaneous interpreting will be provided in EL, EN, and FR

Thursday, 22 November 2018

09.00 – 10.00 a.m. Registration & Welcome Coffee

10.00 – 10:40 a.m.  Welcome session

Chair and short introduction:

  • Isabel Caño Aguilar, EESC Vice-President

Speakers:

  • Luca Jahier, president of the EESC (conf.)
  • Georgios Markopouliotis, Head of the EC representation in Greece
  • Amra Ducic, Ambassador for integration and press officer at the Austrian Chancellery  (conf.)
  • Giorgos Kaminis, Mayor of Athens (t.b.c.)
  • Georgios Katrougalos, Alternate Foreign Minister for European Affairs (conf.)

10:40 – 11:00 a.m. Key note and introduction to the seminar:

  • Stavros-Ioannis Bennos, president of the DIAZOMA association and former politician (conf.)

11:00 – 11:15 a.m.  Coffee break

11.15 a.m. – 1  p.m.  Panel I: European values vs extremist ideologies

Introduction into the topic:

  • Adam Rogalewski, member of the EESC workers’ group (conf.)

The panel will try to find a response to the challenge of extremist points of view (political, social, religious, etc.), erosion of solidarity, growing discrimination of minority groups and trends towards radicalism, xenophobia, intolerance, and degradation in political discourse.

Moderator:

  • Matroni Dikaiakou, journalist (conf.)

Speakers:

  • Paula Guisado, data and investigative journalist (conf.)
  • Anna-Lena Lodenius,  journalist, author and lecturer  (conf.)
  • Barbara Tóth, journalist, historian, teacher and author (conf.)
  • Andrej Zaslove, professor at the department of political science at Radboud University, Nijmegen (conf.)

1 p.m. – 2.30 p.m.  Lunch

2.30 – 4:15  p.m.  Panel II: Liberal democracy facing growing moves towards illiberal democracy in some Member States

Introduction into the topic:

  • Violeta Jelić, member of the EESC employers’ group (conf.)

The panel will cover the degradation of democracy, restriction of media freedom and breaches of the rule of law in some Member States. How can freedom of expression, freedom and diversity of the media, freedom of assembly be preserved? How to protect and reinforce the role and significance of organised civil society, and other actors such as non-governmental organisations? It will also focus on the alleged incapacity of the EU to solve social and economic problems, such as unemployment and growing inequalities.

Moderator:

  • Christina Siganidou, journalist and TV presenter (conf.)

Speakers:

  • Marius Dragomir, director of the center for media, data and society at Central European University  (conf.)
  • Boris Kalnoky, Hungarian-American-German Middle East correspondent at Die Welt   (conf.)
  • Sébastien Maillard,  former journalist, director of the Jacques Delors Institut (conf.)
  • Edit Zgut, political analyst, journalist and teacher (conf.)

4.30 – appr. 5:30 p.m. Cultural Programme – Visit to the Greek Parliament (former Palace)

8.00 p.m. Networking dinner at the Royal Olympia Hotel, roof garden

Friday, 23 November 2018

10:00 – 10:30 Registration

10:30 – 10:45 a.m.  Opening session

  • Isabel Caño Aguilar, EESC Vice-President
  • George Vernicos, ESC President (conf)

10:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.         Panel III: The role of organised civil society in defending a democratic, value-based, united Europe.

Introduction into the topic:

  • Arno Metzler, president of the EESC Diversity Europe Group (conf.)

The panel will cover the challenges and opportunities for civil society in reasserting, fostering and promoting European values and helping to strengthen European cohesion. It will also look at  the European Economic and Social Committee’s role in defending these fundamentals.

Moderator:

  • Sarantis Michalopoulos, journalist (conf.)

Speakers:

  • Jolanta Kurska, writer and journalist, chair of Bronislaw Geremek foundation (conf.)
  • Lorenzo Pregliasco, co-founder of YouTrend and of the research start-up Quorum  (conf.)
  • Tuba Sarica, blogger and author (conf.)
  • Zuzana Števulová, lawyer, lecturer and activist (conf.)

12:45 – 12:50 p.m.  Closing

  • Isabel Caño Aguilar, EESC Vice-President

12:50 p.m.  Take-away lunch