Europe for Citizens programme

Participation: The project « Advantages and Challenges of the Schengen Agreement» was funded with the support of the European Union under the Programme "Europe for Citizens".

Strand 2  -  Measure 2.1 "Town-Twinning”

Participation: The project involved 231 citizens, notably 80 participants from the city of  Schengen (Luxembourg), 35 participants from the city of Vadena (Italy), 57 participants from the city of Perl (Germany), 35 participants from the city of Pozega (Croatia) and 24 participants from the city of Novo Mesto (Slovenia).

Location/ Dates: The event took place in Schengen, Luxembourg from 22.04.2019 to 26.04.2019


Short description: 

The day of 23.04.2019 was dedicated to a workshop related to Euroscepticism and a visit of the Schengen Museum. The aim of the event was to have an exchange about reactions to encounter Euroscepticism. After a short introduction about freedom of speech, during which an outline of the legal framework in Luxembourg was provided the participants were encouraged to provide their definitions of hateful Eurosceptic statements and to describe their personal experiences and reactions to such statements. Finally, the participants formed groups to discuss their experiences and opinions on the issue.

During the visit of the Schengen Museum, participants saw a presentation about the Schengen agreement after which they were given some time to reflect on what open borders mean to them as young EU citizens. As a group, they were invited to be creative and record a short video clip reflecting their sentiments regarding a European Union with open borders. To conclude the activity, a tour of the outdoor exhibition was given by two guides whom both shared personal insights and anecdotes about their lives before the Schengen Agreement. The guides provided background information about the political developments preceding the agreement which helped the participants develop a greater understanding of certain political processes in the EU.

The day of 24.04.2019 was dedicated to an exchange on the different views about open borders and current challenges to the Schengen Agreement.

The day of 25.04.2019 was dedicated to a world café with locals involved in European policy making, including Christophe Hansen (MEP). The Event was organized as a Problem-solving workshop in the style of a world café hosted by EU-policy makers and businessmen who run companies reliant on cross-border trade and employment. The workshop consisted of three rounds during which participants were given 20 minutes with each host to identify and tackle problems related to their field of expertise. Issues ranged from taxes on imported/exported goods, employment of seasonal workers from non-EU countries to the necessity of a European Institution for the exchange of scientific breakthroughs in the fields of agriculture and viticulture. Following the three rounds, a synthesis of the problems and the solutions discovered by the participants and the hosts was presented on whiteboards for everyone to see.