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Who are the new Euro-believers.

Updated: Sep 1, 2021

The European elections are upon us and people across Europe will be pondering their belief in the future of the European project.


We examine the parameters of European citizenship asking, who are the new Euro-believers? This question, we suggest, is neither a matter of europhile and eurosceptic nor a question of voter-ignorance or voter-apathy. Drawing on new studies of people’s accounts of their European citizenship - we propose that the European project - to grow ‘from the bottom up’ and be taken up by its citizens – needs to understand the diversity of citizen relationships which constitute it.


The coming European community, we found, is characterised by national, post-national and nested citizenships. The elections look to be dominated by issues of austerity, immigration and the limits of mobility - we ask, what space is there for new narratives on European citizenship? We can show from our research that belief in the European project is often enacted through some degree of mobility. The challenge for the European project is to face emergent hierarchies of European-ness and articulate a citizenship rooted also in place – identity – we term this the freedom to be settled.


Placing ourselves


Since 2007, 100 people from the generationally non-migrant to serial migrants anticipating their next move, were asked questions on belonging, integration and citizenship in Edinburgh and Stockholm (2007-8)and Dusseldorf, Dublin, Glasgow, Gothenburg & London (2012-14) .


The first open request was to complete the sentence I am a part of …. Our last question, using the image below - do you consider yourself a citizen of the European Union.


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