A press release from the European Policy Centre (EPC)
Brussles & Essen, 09.01.2017
The project will start on the 1st of January 2017. It will connect Stiftung Mercator – a large, private, independent German foundation – and the multiple networks supported by the foundation closely to the EU decision-making processes in Brussels.
The project entails joint, forward-looking activities on the future of Europe, specifically forging dialogue and exchange among policymakers and next-generation voices on youth, climate, migration and other key issues.
"This is excellent news and a fitting end to 2016 for the EPC, following on from a successful 20th anniversary conference", said EPC President Herman Van Rompuy. "In an increasingly fragmented Europe we need to enhance the links between Brussels and the member states and deepen dialogue by connecting the different debates with each other", he added.
EPC Chief Executive Fabian Zuleegsaid: "I am delighted that the Board of the Stiftung Mercator has chosen EPC for this important project. Coming on top of an already long-established partnership with the King Baudouin Foundation and other projects such as the New Pact for Europe, this is further recognition of the EPC’s impact on the discussions around the long-term development of European integration in the face of the Europe’s significant challenges.”
PoulSkytteChristoffersen, Chairman of the EPC Governing Board, said: "The cooperation with Stiftung Mercator in the framework of the Connecting Europe project will enable the EPC to take its work to a next level thereby further consolidating its position in the world of think tanks both in Brussels and beyond."
Michael Schwarz, Managing Director of Stiftung Mercator, said: "Stiftung Mercator aims to foster Europe’s cohesion and our ability to act jointly. We are looking forward to enhancing our contribution to these goals through the day-to-day cooperation of our foundation’s partners across Europe with the experts of the European Policy Centre."
Verena Ringler, Director of International Affairs at Stiftung Mercator, said: "Current challenges urge us to build bridges. We want to connect hands-on endeavours in local contexts, in civil society and with our youth with the people and processes in Brussels. On the other hand, we invite Brussels decision-makers to experience and harness the constructive contributions that hundreds of engaged Europeans are undertaking towards cohesion and connection in Europe every day." As part of the project, the EPC will recruit new staff, including a project leader.
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