Political round table “Strasbourg, a capital for Europe?”


On November 23rd, Y-E-N was invited to participate in the political round table “Strasbourg, a capital for Europe?” This round table was moderated by Olivier Costa (CNRS / Science Po and College of Europe) and had Blaise Gourtay (Secretary General for Regional and European Affairs, Prefecture of the Grand-East region), Anne Sander (1st Quaestor and Member of the European Parliament, representing the President Roberta Metsola), Irène Weiss (Vice-President of the Higher Education, Research and Innovation Commission of the Regional Council Grand-East), Nicolas Matt (Vice-President of the European Collectivity of Alsace) and Jeanne Barseghian (Mayor of Strasbourg and 1st Vice-President of Strasbourg Eurometropole).

This event was organized by Science Po Strasbourg and was part of the workshops launched for the 70th anniversary of the European Parliament

These two days event (22 & 23 of November) supported by the signatories of the Triennial Contract had the following thematic “The European Parliament, a central actor in the construction of Europe”

Strasbourg an avant-garde city in Europe

The round table enabled Strasbourg’s place in Europe to be repositioned. As a result, each actor expressed their vision: 

For the Mayor of Strasbourg, the 70th anniversary of the parliament is an opportunity to relive historic moments such as the construction of Europe after the Second World War. 

Strasbourg continues to be an avant-garde city, whether in terms of ecological urban planning, but also in terms of mobility, thanks to the rail connection that is developing in order to travel across Europe from Strasbourg. Environmental issues are therefore linked to European issues. 

During the last Agora of Strasbourg European Capital, questions about Strasbourg’s place in European mobility have been raised.

According to MEP Anne Sander, Strasbourg is the capital of human rights. The parliament, thanks to its legislative powers, is the voice of the citizens. It is important to listen to their voices. There is a will to strengthen the place of the European Parliament in the life of the citizens of Strasbourg and France in the years to come. One desire is to welcome young Europeans, as is the case every two years during the EYE event which attracts thousands of young people.

Irène Weiss points out that the Grand-East Region is the leading cross-border region in France.

Thanks to the close links with our European counterparts, we have an outward-looking vision: a region for and with young people. They must continue to reach out to young people and listen to them. Hence, the Grand-East Region has created the Regional Youth Council, which allows young people to debate current issues and perhaps become the MEPs of tomorrow. 

Finally, Nicolas Matt and Blaise Gourtay stress that European institutions are closer to their citizens. For our network, improving European mobility would be an opportunity to facilitate meetings with our member organizations. Finally, we fully agree on the place of young people in European political life. We must listen to their voices and promote youth exchanges.