This school year, students in Germany are invited to share their ideas on how to make Europe an (even) better place to live and have the chance to win a study trip to Brussels! The competition complements the publication of the ‚Active democracy in the EU – become part of the European Citizens‘ Initiative!‘, which allows teachers to familiarise their pupils with the European Union’s areas of activity and the tools available to citizens to get involved in the EU.
Secondary school students from across the EU are invited to take part in the ImagineEU competition by creating and sharing a short video about an innovative idea that could improve their communities and serve as the basis for an EU law.
The ImagineEU competition builds on the concept of the ECI, which allows citizens of the European Union to play an active role in influencing EU policies and in the EU’s democratic processes. Students taking part in the competition are encouraged to learn more about the EU and develop their communication and cooperation skills using the recently published ECI Building Kit for Schools.
Who can participate?
The competition is aimed at pupils in the last two years of secondary education in an EU Member State. The videos (no longer than 3 minutes) should be developed and produced by a group of up to 7 students from the same school, under the supervision of one or two teachers.
The submitted videos will be uploaded to the competition’s website, where viewers will be invited to vote for and support their favorites.
Once the public voting is complete, the best videos will be judged by the competition jury, and the three winning videos will be announced.
The deadline for entries is 13.12.2023. The full contest rules, the technical specifications for the video, and details on how to apply can be found on the contest’s website.
What’s up for grabs?
The three winning teams, consisting of 7 students and 2 teachers, will win a study trip to Brussels.
During the trip, students will have the opportunity to meet representatives of the European institutions dealing with the ECI and learn more about the role of the different EU institutions and the history of the EU.
What is the European Citizens‘ Initiative (ECI)?
The ECI is a democratic instrument designed to encourage citizens in the different Member States of the European Union to demand changes on issues that affect them and on which the European Commission has the power to propose EU legislation.
The ECI allows groups of organisers (from at least 7 Member States) to propose laws that can influence the future of EU policies.
After an examination of the legal requirements, EU citizens are invited to support initiatives for one year. Once one million signatures have been collected for the initiative and validated by the national authorities, the Commissioners will decide on the official response to the initiative, outlining what measures, if any, will follow and why.
Since 2012, 103 initiatives have been registered by European citizens in policy areas such as the environment, animal welfare, transport and consumer protection, social affairs and fundamental rights. There are currently 10 initiatives collecting signatures and 9 initiatives have received an official response from the European Commission.
What is the ECI Active Democracy in the EU Building Kit for Schools?
The interactive ECI toolkit for schools aims to equip secondary school students with the knowledge and skills they need to become more active and engaged EU citizens. The toolkit consists of four thematic units, each with a different focus, ranging from more general information about the European Union to specific information and activities related to the European Citizens‘ Initiative. The ECI toolkit is available in all official languages of the EU.
The ECI in Germany
More than 900 citizens‘ organisers have launched 103 European Citizens‘ Initiatives, 99 of which were from German organisers. Within the EU, over 18 million signatures have been collected in support of the initiatives, of which almost 5 million signatures have been collected in Germany.
Find out more about the European Citizens‘ Initiative
If you want to learn more about the European Citizens‘ Initiative, you can listen to the recently released episode of the podcast CitizenCentral (also available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and Soundcloud).
This episode discusses the impact of successful citizens‘ initiatives.
The European Citizens‘ Initiative in figures
Initiatives for which signaturesare now being collected
Get involved with the ambassadors of the European Citizens‘ Initiative (Europa.EU)
The Guidelines of the Competition
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