https://www.facebook.com/Tbilisi2013 Issue 3 Online version
Be proud. Parents would never say that their own child is ugly. That does not happen. Even if objectively speaking, certain human beings do not meet the socially approved criteria of “pretty” or “handsome”. We are proud of what we create. But why is that?
Yet, seeming rather obvious to the large majority of you, this is a fundamental observation you should all keep in mind when looking at back at both, your own resolution and the one you deem as insufficient or perhaps even weak.
Studies have shown that we identify with what we Enjoy reading! create or if we are involved in the creation process. This applies to all aspects of our lives. Profes- With dedication, sionally, successful companies are the ones Alex Narayanin that manage to develop an ownership feeling amongst their employees for the final product. The employees are willing to dedicate more time and energy into making the product accurate. Another example is parental involvement in school – in either way, proved having a very positive impact on the children’s learning performance. To keep it general, one could argue that whenever one places dedication, commitment and energy into something, it significantly increases the quality of the final creation.
Contents Tbilisi 2013
Page 5 - 6
Page 7 - 9
Committee Articles Food for thought
Page 10 - 24 Page 25 3
The session in numbers By Christos Papadogeorgopoulos
Seconds of the session: 864.000 Plastic Cups: 45.000 Printed pages: 1.200 Litres of water: 1.500 Delegates: 205 Officials: 55 Kilos of sugar: 30 Hours of Head Organisers skyping with Krista: 30 Hours of Head Organisers skyping with Jari: 25 Hotels: 3
– The title about hipsters goes here – Because any other title would be too mainstream
Oversized plastic framed glasses, skinny jeans of different colours and a sarcastic attitude have been introduced by hipsters in our everyday lives for a couple of years. The original hipster notion was derived from earlier movements in late 40’s, referring to the alternative lifestyles far away from the mainstream. There are millions of people in the world – and hipsters seek to remain one of a kind amongst this bunch of ‘ordinary’ people. I must admit that trying to explain what hipsters do is not hipster at all, but let us take a look at several compulsory rules for being one.
look – even if you are trying to give your hair a casual shape with your elusive hair spray for two hours. Although the Oxford dictionary defines the word hipster as “a person who follows the latest trends and fashions”, you can dismiss it and listen to the little girl’s question in Macklemore’s ‘Thrift Shop’ by literally wearing your grandma’s coats for style. High waist trousers, lace and floral patterns for girls, skinny jeans, old wool pullovers and t-shirts which have some witty lines or cartoon characters for boys would be perfectly in order. For the accessories – glasses of unusual shapes, hair bands, or just some random non-related ironic personal belongings such as a lunchbox with cool or childish patterns are complete the style. Do not forget to have a cool bag for your MacBook.
1.Clothes, accessories, hipster style: Hipsters, even though they are sometimes extremely different from other people, usually look very nice. However, this attractiveness is not supposed to give the impression 2. Have a good taste that hours were spent on the Do have a good taste for
By Zeynep Ekinci
music, literature, even food! Make sure that your playlist consists of songs of unusual origins or unknown minimal groups. Do not even have a look at the bestseller books, be discerning about film, music and coffee choice. Be accustomed to world dishes. Focus on gourmet food as well, do not hesitate to combine clashing tastes for coming up with a new recipe. 3. Recycle, cycle and be cynical Go green and love nature! Criticise over-consumption and justify that with your awesome reuse skills. Castigate people who own cars and be healthy. (You definitely have to fit in those skinny clothes!) Drink a lot of awkward fresh fruit juice. Most important of all, be sarcastic all the time; it is the only way to have fun in and survive amongst all other dull and ordinary people. 5
Basic tips on how to choose and wear a suit
A boy becomes a man the moment he chooses his first suit. However, that particular moment is a real challenge, as he obviously neither wants to look like a sack or like a stick. A good suit should be simple, elegant and figure hugging. That is why the male part of the media team decided to give you some tips on how to choose and wear a suit. Here are a few steps that will help you look presentable during the basic EYP events like Euroconcert or the General Assembly, or just classy if you prefer to wear suits in your daily life. Firstly, you have to choose a colour and a material for your outfit. Start with some basic colours like grey or dark blue. Black is more suitable for a funeral; bright colours look weird and are not acceptable in certain occasions; striped or squared suits are too memorable. Regarding the material, choose something of a high 6
By Oleksii Prylipka
quality, like wool, and avoid you can move comfortably. synthetic materials. Check all When choosing the shoes, the stitches, buttons and lining. stick to the classic models like Oxford or Derby. Brogues Second comes the costume are allowed, but not for the fit. The most common mistake formal events, and the colour is when the jacket is too large. should be black or brown. That is why you have to start trying on from the bigger sizes, Thirdly, you need accessories. slowly moving to smaller ones Belt, socks and shoes prefuntil it is too small. After that, erably should be of one coljust take the previous size. It our and not contrast with the should not be too tight either. colour of the suit. Do not use To check this, put your fist gold details; silver cufflinks between the jacket and your and clips look classier. For heart; there should be enough the official events, wear a tie, room. Also, bear in mind that but remember that fancy orshoulder width should not naments and pictures are not hamper your moves. The allowed. For evening events, well-fitting shirt is a must to wear a bow tie. In both cases, complete the top part of the the colours should combine costume. Under the jack- well with the colour of the suit. etâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sleeve, 1,5 centimetres of the cuff should be seen. Last but not least, do not be afraid to experiment. Follow The bottom part of the outfit these easy steps and the latest consists of trousers and shoes. fashion. Suits will never be inThe trousers should not be appropriate or old-fashioned. skinny or flared. The perfect choice is slim trousers in which
Enjoy the ride An interview with the Executive Director of the International Office of the EYP, Krista Simberg By Öykü Talı
Ever since Krista Simberg started her EYP career in 2003, she has been climbing up the stairs to success. She participated in numerous EYP sessions internationally as a journalist, chairperson, Head Organiser and President. After she had a break from the EYP for two years, she took over the position of Executive Director of the International Office of the EYP in July. When asked why she decided to come back, she explains that she wanted to take another approach to the EYP, rather distant this time, not as an active alumna. Her glowing eyes and the smile on her face truly show how much she enjoys being back. “It is really nice to be reminded about what makes EYP so great”, she says. Apparently, the EYP International Office and Berlin have been treating her well so far.
people. That is why she has always regarded Eurovillage as the best part of the session since she very much appreciates the joy of cultural exchange. Tbilisi 2013 being presided by Jari Marjelund, Krista having taken over her position from beloved Ville Vasaramäki from Finland, and the 79th International Session taking place in Tampere in summer 2015, it is indeed a big question what lies behind the success of Finnish EYPers. Krista chuckles and admits that it is a lucky coincidence but she seems to be truly proud of her National Committee (NC) being rather well represented on the European level.
Krista shortly summarises her responsibilities as the coordinator of the EYP network on the international level. She She describes the way the EYP mould- explains that the International Office ed her into the person she is now as serves as a backbone to Organising “eye-opening journey”. She admits Teams of International Sessions, fundthat she would not be the same per- raises for EYP events and organises son now if it would not be for the EYP. trainings and small events such as the According to her, the most fascinat- Fundraising Summit, the Head Organing aspects of the EYP are the great isers’ Summit and NC Management events she has experienced in the past trainings. She says their main aim is to ten years, gaining self-confidence and “provide different tools to the NCs to getting to know different cultures and sustain their needs in different areas.” 7
With the new governance policy ahead, the EYP is in a phase of rapid development. In the long-term policies and decisions the Board of National Committees will have an equal say as the Governing Body. These reforms will most certainly provide the organisation with a better structure. Krista believes that the organisation has changed very much, even when she was a participant. She points out: “EYP is getting more professional. In order to involve more people and do more, we are forced to have more structures to support what is going on.” Furthermore, she reckons practice sharing is becoming very important. Good examples and practices from past and present are offered to new NCs for further development. This is what keeps the organisation changing and developing.
ing the 74th International Session of the EYP at the very beginning. However, she thinks: “It was the right way to do, to actually come to Tbilisi and show everyone that Georgia is also a part of Europe.” Tbilisi also stands for a learning experience for her. She is fascinated to see how cultural differences even change the way of organising sessions. She admits that they were stressed out during the months leading up to the event when some details were not cleared out. Then, everything was finalised last minute, and she sees this difference as a special feature of the particular culture.
She reckons every single person experiences EYP sessions in his or her own way. Her best advice to all participants is to get to know as many people as possible. To conclude, she Krista has been working for Tbilisi 2013 has some wise words: “Try to have for only four months, but she is very a list of countries and tick them all as happy to see that the session is going you get to know people. Give yoursmoothly. She admits that, as many oth- self to the session and enjoy the ride!” ers, she was sceptical about Tbilisi host8
The chairs’ chairs Discovering the role of the board at an EYP session
All sessions of the EYP are lead by a board which consists of the President and two or three Vice-Presidents. Even though they mostly act in the background and are probably primarily noticed during the General Assembly, they are crucial for the event to go smoothly. In this article, you can read more about their responsibilities at sessions. The Vice-Presidents have various functions during the event. First of all, they are often also chairpersons and have to lead their committee. Additionally, the Chairs’ Team is usually split up into buddy groups with one Vice-President being in charge of their own group. They are constantly present with advice and help so that the chairpersons will always have somewhere to turn to. Before a session they are a big
By Ilir Kola
part of the academic preparation er teams’ leaders to establish an as they proofread the topic over- effective cooperation. Finally, the views together with the President. President is the main facilitator during the General Assembly. The role of the President can be considered multi-dimensional. The board also has responsabilHis work starts long before the ities as a whole. They organise session. Firstly, he is part of the the chairs’ training before the selection panel for the Vice-Pres- session, and, in the case of Interidents and the Chairpersons. He national Sessions, they also conis also has a say when selecting duct the Chairs Academic Trainthe Editor. Together with the inter- ing. Additionally, they lead the national office and the Governing process of resolution typing and Body he manages the pre-ses- are responsible for the academsion preparation by finalising ic quality of the resolutions. They the topics and coordinating the chair the team of chairpersons, preparation kit writing process. are responsible for the officials’ Of course, his role is not only re- teambuilding at the beginning lated with the chairpersons. The of the session and are involved President serves as a bridge in most of the major decisions. between the Chairs’ Team, the Media Team and the Organis- Last but not least, the board ing Team, so that all the officials members serve as role modof the session act as one team. els and inspiration to all the He frequently meets with the oth- participants of the session. 9
Wind of change Committee on Constitutional Affairs I We are used to live shoulder to shoulder with democracy. Years ago, every citizen that reached a certain age, was completely sure that his or her impact into national politics is considered by the government. Nowadays, citizens highly doubt that. In fact, 70,9% of the population aged between 18 and 24 – the supposedly future of Europe - are completely sure that they have no influence. The trust in democracy is weakening. Taking into account the recent economic crises in EU Member States and general political instability, certain distrust in European politics appeared. Today, only 31% of citizens trust the EU’s institutions. Members of the European Parliament are directly elected politicians by the EU citizens. Yet, the only institution that is implementing decisions is the European Commission The European Parliament, is merely approving this executive body meaning that the only structure that can enforce legislation is not directly
elected by EU citizens. Accordingly, different voting procedures were adapted to local, national and EU elections. As a result, the impression of a democratic deficit developed. European citizens are detecting the lack of democratic legitimacy concerning accountability and control over the decision-making process.
By Oleksandra Gipsh the key problem in this sphere.
Today, we are also facing the lack of involvement of some social groups, such as young people, migrants and disabled people. The shortage of interest of the youth might be caused by unclear connection between national and EU parties, which seem to be elected directly by general public. Nevertheless, a common voting This can be caused by the abprocedure might be the solution sence of visible daily impact of the for regaining the trust to democ- EU into the life of regular citizens. racy and the citizen’s position as the key of governmental de- Even though the European Citivelopment. However, the Com- zens Initiative was implemented mittee on Constitutional Affairs as an instrument of participatory I proposed to increase the ac- democracy, there is still a lack of cessibility of voting by introduc- both direct impacts on EU legislaing postal voting, e-voting and tion as well as noticeable results. voting from abroad and implementing a common voting age Elections are coming next year, so for EU Member States. Never- it is time to make political particitheless, voting procedure is just pation “by the people” and at the the top of the pyramid of misun- same time a citizen representaderstanding between EU institu- tion “of the people” and effections and particular citizens. The tive governance “for the people”. low level of citizens’ awareness on electoral rights still remains
Towards improved external relations Committee on Constitutional Affairs II Being one of topics that is most closely linked to the session theme, AFCO II’s topic on credible foreign policy making and implementation is also one of the most challenging. When discussing it you have to, at all times, take a complex network of treaties and institutions into consideration, and entering the AFCO II committee room and seeing it all drawn on various flipcharts can be slightly overwhelming. You simply have to know your EU, which is not an easy task for anyone.
matter. Since the creation of the EU, its purpose has changed and competences as well as responsibilities have increased. What AFCO II has noticed is that the EU is struggling to keep up. There is a will to always expand and create new partnerships; however, the organisational bit is lagging behind. Who does what is ill-defined resulting in slow decision-making processes. AFCO II also recognises that, although a union, the EU brings together 28 conflicting wills from countries that do not only answer to the EU but many also to organisations such as NATO.
By Emilie Tilstam bureaucracy, stricter deadlines in decision making and putting more effort into researching and working out a better defined common purpose. Also, foreign policy should be made more beneficial for Member States and the EU as a whole. On a bit more controversial note AFCO II also wants the EU to be prioritised by Member States when there is conflict of commitment.
Tricky indeed and what makes it trickier still is that we do not really know what the problem itself is, yet. The active strive towards acting as one in world affairs is Nevertheless, ACFO II underfairly young, the European Exstands very well what the reason for the EU having difficulties in Despite these problems, AFCO ternal Action Service (EEAS) was the making of a credible foreign II’s aim is unanimous: There installed in 2009 as one implepolicy is. It stems from the lack should be a collective EU foreign mentation of the Lisbon Treaty. of definition of what the EU’s role ministry; it just has to work bet- Thus, we still have to let time have in foreign affairs should be and ter. According to AFCO II them- its say on where we are going. how it should be formed for that selves, this would include less
A race for the not so icy sea Committee on Foreign Affairs I
The European Union wants in! That is the stance the Committee on Foreign Affairs I quickly adopted during Committee Work concerning the Arctic council. As the Arctic ice melts, everyone gets ready to capture the treasure hidden beneath. In order to ensure a piece of this bounty from this political grey zone for the EU, we must have a place on the most influential organisation regarding this northern region. Around 30% of the worlds’ undiscovered oil reserves may lie under the Arctic ice. However, oil is not the only asset found on the North Pole. The melting of the ice would open up a new sea route. Access and control of it is Russia’s official reason for their claim. Yet, at the same time they have already made oil deals for drilling in the Arctic region. Apart from economic advantages, control 12
By Timothy Henry Charles Tamm
over the Arctic region would also there were enough resources at give Russia a military advantage. hand for a clean up if necessary. At first, the committee wanted AFET I wants to benefit from the drilling companies to be the all these new possibilities, but investors. “If the countries would as always with the EU, do it in be the ones to pay, the oil coma responsible and sustainable panies would not think about the way. Besides wanting a perma- consequences of an accident”, nent observer seat on the Arc- stated Edward from Sweden. In tic Council, they also want to the end, they opted for the counstrengthen it, in order to have a tries with the reasoning that they more powerful international or- are the ones who will have to ask ganisation governing this crucial the Arctic council for permission region. In order to achieve an ob- to drill in the region and also the server status, they are willing to ones to benefit the most from it. make compromises and adjust the EU’s policies that are cur- The members of AFET I do not rently keeping us from doing so. want to restrict access to the treasures of the Arctic region. An interesting idea that came “We wish to stabilise the condiup was to create an emergency tion in the Arctic by both protecthelp programme into which Arc- ing the environment and obtaintic countries have to invest. This ing natural resources all while would create a safety net for maintaining peace.” said Katie dealing with catastrophes, which from Ireland. A chivalrous goal would ensure that, for example, by a determined committee.
No more tolerance for stepping back
Committee on Foreign Affairs II
The Western Balkans is a very conflicted area with a complex background in many aspects and one common goal: becoming EU Member States. Especially after the accession of Croatia, which expresses the inclination of the EU towards an enlargement friendly policy, these countries have accelerated their efforts. However, there is still much to do for reaching this longed goal. During its Committee Work, AFET II was to determine in which ways the EU could support the Western Balkan countries in developing good governance and rule of law aspects. These, of course, will not be the magic solutions to eliminate all problems for an EU membership, yet indicate a good starting point. However, due to previous political conflicts, mainly including Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Kosovo, the
By Zeynep Ekinci
guarantee minoritiesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; rights and the freedom of expression, preserving the cultural heritage of any nation in this area, the lack of a well-defined and efficient anti-corruption strategy, and the absence of transparency, accountability and perception of Although the topic covered sen- a functioning democracy in the sitive points, AFET II was luckily aforementioned countries. Findable to have a rather impartial ing ideas about the amelioration attitude when coming up with of pre-existing implementations solutions. This may be because and determining to what exthe committee did not have any tend the EU should intervene or delegates coming from sub- contribute were also one of the ject countries. Following a very main tasks of the Committee. clever strategy with the support of their beloved chairperson Te- Frankly, I was enchanted by the resa, they first started out by unison and harmony within the sharing all the information they members of AFET II. The discushad on the Former Yugoslav Re- sions went smoothly and even public of Macedonia, Kosovo, if the topic contained numerMontenegro, Serbia, Albania, ous cases of multilateral proband Bosnia and Herzegovina. lems, they managed to reach Throughout the discussions, to a consensus for a detailed they decided upon some crucial and high-quality resolution. problems to tackle: the need to regionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s unfortunate economic conditions come to the forefront. In the aftermath of a worldwide impactful crisis, internal issues such as corruption and organised crime become major obstacles for taking further steps.
Prosperity in unity
Committee on Foreign Affairs III The Vilnius Summit tends to be recognised as a base for building a bridge between EU and nonEU countries and as groundwork for Eastern Partnership. Eastern Partnership is a project of the European Union, which was primarily established for the development of EU integration ties with six former Soviet republics: Ukraine, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia and Belarus. It is regarded as a regional measure of the European neighbourhood policy, which was initiated by the EU in relation to its ‘new neighbours’ after the enlargement in May 2004, the addition to the ‘Northern Dimension’ and the ‘Mediterranean Union’. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland with the participation of Sweden at the European Council on General Affairs and External Relations on May 26, 2008 presented the idea of the project.
ber States and those countries. Providing a visa-free regime for Eastern countries can provoke massive migration for asylum seekers or those, who migrate for the sake of a better life quality, economic and political stability. Moreover, opening borders between the states that significantly differ in terms of economic development may result in human trafficking and smuggling. Countries of the Eastern region are mostly influenced by Russia referring when it comes to import and export goods. The Committee on Foreign Affairs III discovered that in 2011, 42,5 % of Azerbaijan’s export went to the Russian Federation. Thus, today, Russia is blocking import and export relationships to different countries, such as Ukraine, so the countries have to ‘turn their face’ towards Europe and reconstruct it’s economy accordingly. At the same time, Russia is strongly orienting nonEU countries against the EU.
By Oleksandra Gipsh to the European one. Firstly, what needs to be done as first priority are increasing the level of economic development, promoting democracy, and executing Human Rights. Following these criteria will allow an equivalent relationship between those countries. Thus, for now the European market is following a ‘what goes around comes around’ attitude. Working merely amongst each other, EU Member States are creating a vicious circle. EU Member States definitely need to restructure their markets to allow more foreign workers and for develop their infrastructure to enable satisfying living conditions for foreign workers and their families. Moreover, Europe is facing an ageing population and opening borders might actually improve the situation.
The Vilnius Summit is a huge The common nature of political opportunity that still needs to mindset in post Soviet counmeet fruitful results. Eastern tries is mostly pro-Russian and Mostly, non-EU Member States Partnership is offering a helpjust 40% per country is oriented are not ready for an equal part- ing hand for both sides. Therepro-European. Moreover, the visa nership due to economic and fore, let us keep our fingers regime emphasises and builds political instabilities and low- crossed and enjoy the produca border between EU Mem- er standards of life, compared tive results in just one month.
The day after tomorrow for Europe Committee on Climate Change While certain groups had doubts about it, our continent managed to survive December 21, 2012. The continent did not crush in half and the Mediterranean Sea did not flood us. Although these events are currently being seen as science fiction, things may dramatically change in the future. Extreme weather phenomena can threaten the entire European continent – fear not though, the Committee on Climate Change is on its way to propose a rescue. In order to see the topic from a higher perspective, CLIM created a map of dangerous weather phenomena across Europe. Different colours mean different happenings – floods and storms to the North, droughts to the South, floods in the centre. No more than a simple piece of paper, although it is scary.
The more problems and dangers gets recognised, the more it becomes clear that Europe nowadays do not possess effective mechanisms to act when threatened by ‘forces of nature’, and they will appear for sure. CLIM decided that the priority and the main goal of the topic is to find and define ways of how to deal with the effects, not the very source of the problem. Whenever a dangerous weather phenomenon occurs, an instant action is required. Therefore, there is a strong need of implementing the right legal instruments both on the domestic and European surface. Furthermore, they strongly support the idea of inner regulations of each particular EU Member State. Establishing a common strategy towards the problem is one thing,
By Łukasz Napiórkowski but implementing the legal regulation can sometimes be just outside of the EU’s jurisdiction. While mostly focusing on the present, CLIM does not forget about the future. As a midterm solution, they propose the overall improvement of resilience in such areas as infrastructure, water management or public health. Additional future restrictions on various gas emissions may also recover the situation. The committee itself obviously is the most eco-friendly at the session. Not only because of its topic but also because of the fact that during the first Committee Work day, CLIM worked for quite some time with no lights at all. Surely everybody will agree that preserving energy is one step further towards saving the planet!
Improving austerity Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs
The Commitee ECON is facing one of the most severe issues that has recently been on the spotlight in all EU Member States. Because of the economic crisis, most governments had to impose austerity measures in order to balance their budgets, but the same measures caused various side effects. The task of ECON was to come up with a strategy on how to balance the budget without affecting the economic growth.
crease, the cut of public spendings or a mixture of the two. Although it would increase revenues, ECON believes that the augmentation of taxes would at the same time have negative effects in the long run. Firstly, there would be a decrease in demand because consumers would have to pay more taxes, which means they would have less money to put in the market. This also leads to unemployment and social unrest. On the other hand, cutting public The first point which ECON spendings, which in most cases agreed upon was that EU Mem- has been done inappropriately, ber States should first evalu- would create an environment of ate the current system, find the increased unemployment, reflaws in it and then come up duced output and a Gross Dowith a way on how to improve mestic Product decrease, directthe situation. They decided ly leading to protests and riots. to apporach the topic, dividing it into four different sectors: In order to tackle these probbudget deficits issues, social lems, the delegates of ECON and political issues, unemploy- decided not to fully remove ausment issues, and private and terity as an approach, but to governmental institutions issues. take measures in order to minimise its side-effects instead. Austerity is a fiscal policy used by governments to balance their First of all, they believe that EU budget and it involves tax in- Member States should manage 16
By Ilir Kola
revenues in a more effective manner. By this, ECON means that if money comes from tax revenues is used both for investment in different areas and debt payment, the budget would be balanced while the economy continues to develop because of the economic stimulus. Secondly, the committee proposes that taxes should increase to balance the budget, but this would only affect certain groups â&#x20AC;&#x201C; the ones with a higher level of income. This is done in order to make sure that people who earn less will not suffer from the situation. Furthermore, ECON suggests that tax raising should only involve demerit inelastic goods and luxury goods. Finally, the committee believes that there should be measures to prevent this situation in the future. They would include a more effective supervision on budget related issues and individual punishment to people who are responsible for the failure of large-scale financial institutions.
Young Europeans fighting for their future Committee on Employment and Social Affairs
In the last few years, a severe economic crisis hit the EU drastically reducing the youngstersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; chances to start a new business. Young Europeans represent the future, but if they are not even able to set up their own entrepreneurial plans, it seems that Europe will not have a bright tomorrow. Becoming an entrepreneur is not an easy process, especially nowadays when it is difficult to be both trusted and financed. As a first solution on how to tackle this issue, the Committee EMPL underlines the importance of a common funding system that should help young entrepreneurs creating their own business. This is especially important when it comes to the division of funds among the Member States, also considering the huge differences between their economies. For this reason, funds should be equally divided in order to give the same chances to all the youngsters willing to take up the challenge of starting a
business. However, most of the investors are still doubtful. For this reason EMPL, suggests the creation of common guidelines that can lead to mutual trust and higher self-esteem for those youngsters who want to engage themselves in this kind of career. Another aspect hindering the development of this sector is the huge amount of time that it is usually wasted in obtaining start-ups. In order to ease the registration process, EMPL suggests a system of free legal assistance as well as a common procedure supported by the web. This way, the registration should be more direct and effective for everyone who wants to apply for the programme. Last, but definitely not least, when analysing this topic it is necessary to address the educational system. Most of the time the notions taught at university are definitely not enough for young people to get involved
By Elisa Martinelli
in the entrepreneurial sector. The organisation of lectures and seminars can be essential for increasing their knowledge on the matter, but once again it is very difficult to find a common ground in the educational system among all EU Member States. However, in an economic system that changes more quickly and unexpectedly than ever before, it is fundamental to acquire the necessary entrepreneurial skills, especially for youngsters. Youth unemployment can be fought with the establishment of a sector that is able to benefit from both the skills of more experienced workers and the enthusiasm of youngsters striving for their own future. While considering this relevant topic, it is fundamental to consider all the aspects related not only to the labour market and the educational system, but also the different development of the EU Member StatesÂ´ economies. 17
Rampaging incompetence Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
By Timothy Henry Charles Tamm
with it. Opposing them were the committee members, who supported a more relaxed stance. One, where the EU would support non-governmental organisations (NGOs) that would help teach children about reproductive health by sending experts to schools. In the end, they went for a compromise. The guideFor ENVI the first part of Com- lines will be set for the EU with mittee Work was quite smooth. a focus on the eastern counAlthough they agreed on most tries. At the same time, an orpoints, there were some clash- ganisation will be set up through es on how forceful the tactics which experts from all over the the EU should use in order to EU can collaborate with each combat the problem at hand. other and NGOs in order to come up with the best solutions. The first of these came when discussing the general approach A second heated discussion the EU should take. On one side arose when religion was menwere the delegates who sup- tioned. Although it would help ported a forceful change of leg- the education process to have a islation, which would set strict common curriculum all over Euguidelines on when and how rope, which covers all the necesto teach the youth about sex sary sides of sexual education, and everything that goes along a problem arises when different ENVI began its work with everyone giving a short presentation of sexual education in their countries. In the end, one thing was clear: The situation in Europe is incredibly diverse. In the West and the North, the standard is exceptionally high, yet the situation in Eastern Europe is grim.
cultures are taken into account. In many countries, teaching children about sex is not considered acceptable due to cultural and especially religious reasons and a conflict would emerge when trying to find a common strategy. To mitigate this issue, a consent form system was proposed. If parents do not want their children to be taught about some aspects of sexuality, then they have the opportunity to have their kid sit out on those lessons. The hopes for ENVI are high; their vision for the future of sexual education in Europe is clear. One, where children are taught everything necessary at the right time and in the right way. One, where Kristaps from Latvia would no longer have to describe his countries’ lessons as “useless information taught by incompetent people”.
Breaking the Taboo Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality Some people refer to as ‘the oldest profession in the world’. The Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality is facing an issue that has been controversial from the very moment of its first appearance. A topic like this, complex and straightforward at the same time, can only be handled by a united team of strong individuals, which is not afraid of naming the real factors.
wards prostitution. They aim to promote respect for the victims of the ‘sexual industry’. However, they do not necessarily want to promote the industry itself. The chairperson of FEMM, Pınar Akkor, says this is the best and most skilful committee she ever had the pleasure of chairing. Honestly, after spending some time in the committee room, I am not surprised she thinks that way.
FEMM wants to find a common ground through one course of action to lower the number of victims of human trafficking and to change the people’s mentality toward sex workers in order to make their work safer and to defend the women’s rights. Furthermore, the committee wants to create a new approach to-
It is better to work while being at least somehow secured. The labour law is one of the most advanced law branches among the EU Member States. Following this, FEMM would like to recognise prostitution as an occupation, with all the benefits it provides – both labour laws and health insurance. They want the
By Łukasz Napiórkowski prostitution off the streets. Keeping in mind that providing sex services has always been and most likely will remain a sensitive subject, FEMM thinks it would be far better to ensure its professionalism and legal security by legalising it in restricted way indoors. While not at work, the FEMM Committee gets along very well. Female representatives have an advantage in numbers – it is 12 against 2. Asked about what they would like to say to the rest of the session they answered “FEMM is FEMMtastic”. When it comes to men, both of them would like to send their best regards to their colleagues at the session (they have been smiling while saying this).
This time we cannot aim at the bigger picture Committee on International Trade
When the international trade struggles to keep the pace of a changing economy, all the lights are turned towards the biggest economic partnership worldwide, the one between the United States and the European Union.
stone for new Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with the states experiencing a huge growth in their economies. If the TTIP is a really effective partnership, new areas can be looked at for a fruitful partnership with the EU.
One of the most important issues surrounding the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) is the lack of transparency that is too often an obstacle, hindering the countries from obtaining maximum gains. In order to tackle this problem, the Committee on International Trade proposes the creation of simplified official documents that are easily accessible for anyone. This would lead to an increased mobility of both the EU and US economies, boosting and easing exchanges on any kind of goods traded. However, this can negatively affect those countries that are not included in the TTIP. On the one hand it may be considered a big loss for EU international trade, but on the other hand it can be seen as a mile-
Moreover, the Committee INTA stresses the importance of creating qualification standards between the EU and US. This would allow an easier communication between them and make the TTIP itself become more effective. Having common standards within the labour market would also tackle unemployment, which prevents the countries from further enhancing their economies.
A controversial point is the use of subsidies. While they can make some companies more competitive in the internal and external market, their benefits for small industries are really low. This will, therefore, create a huge gap between small and big businesses. However, some goods are diffi-
By Elisa Martinelli
cult to trade, especially because not all the Member States have the same opinion on their consumption. This is especially the case with Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), which also raise moral and ethical issues. Agriculture can highly benefit from the introduction of GM seeds, considering that the production of the same kind of goods is cheaper and faster, but it is also the source of environmental issues such as cross-contamination between normal and GM species. Finding a way to regulate the matter internationally seems too difficult at the moment, but it is definitely necessary to consider all the alternative ways of boosting the development in such a vital sector of both the US and EU economies. While studying this important topic, it is therefore necessary to be aware of the variety of goods that can be freely traded overseas and have an accurate case-by-case analysis.
The young space explorers Committee on Industry, Research and Energy
The Committee ITRE is trying to tackle the issue of utilising space research so as to gain a global lead on scientific and technological research, as well as finding other uses for space research. During the first day of Committee Work, by giving presentations, the members of the committee tried to get an insight into different agencies and current or future developments related to space and space research. Examples of the former include the European Space Agency (ESA) and the European Defence Agency while examples of the latter include Copernicus, Galileo and SSA.
By Christos Papadogeorgopoulos
the European space strategy in times of budgetary difficulties by prioritising close-to-earth observation and ensuring the competitiveness of the sector. To tackle the problem and move towards the aforesaid goal, ITRE tried to work on different sub-domains, funding and budget, cooperation and competitiveness, private sector independence and legislation, and derive solutions based on them.
As far as the private sectorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s independence is concerned, in a try to increase research and observation, the members of ITRE discussed the possibility The challenge for ITRE was to that Copuos will host a summit find the issues they wanted to to work on the legal document concentrate on and a solution guideline, containing basic printo the space research problem- ciples for international coopatic. This means that they often eration between countries or went on without taking a defi- agencies as well as providing nite stand on the problem. After a platform for discussion and further brainstorming as well as potential cooperation between guidance by their chairperson, these countries or agencies. Jonathan, they concluded that What should also be stressed their actual focus is to improve about their discussion is that
they highlighted the role of the Networking Partnering Initiative in order to enhance research. Furthermore, as for the funding and budget, again in a try to achieve the wanted research and competitiveness of the sector, ITRE suggested to encourage the ESA to further involve the private sector by creating a competitive environment for Private Public Partnerships in order to prevent monopolisation through the redirection of public procurements towards shortterm engagements. Lastly, they believe that the ESA should prioritise the programmes focusing on internal affairs and technological research and distribute the overall budget accordingly. ITRE had a productive discussion about the issue of space research. In doing so, the committee is trying to cover a wide range of areas so as to complete the bigger picture more thoroughly.
What’s mine is yours Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs I Governmental surveillance and the growing concerns about data protection are among the most challenging and recent issues that the EU faces nowadays. Four different parties have been directly affected: personal users, governments, companies and the EU. The Committee LIBE I discussed the problems and solutions to the issue with regards to the key stakeholders concerning data protection.
lance due to security concerns.
LIBE I easily agreed that the current regulations covering data protection need major amendments. However, the committee’s main disagreement was about the extent of the policies and the key institutions in action. One of the main discussions was about the duration and the amount of information that should be stored by the governments or retrieved from the service providThe right to protection of per- ers. LIBE I agreed upon the fact sonal data is included in the EU that explicit consent is needed Charter of Fundamental Rights. in order to share personal data. Bearing that in mind, LIBE I raised several questions relat- Furthermore, bearing in mind ed to the issue, which include the rapid technological adthe implementation of the ‘right vancements, LIBE I decided to be forgotten’, the outdat- upon the redefinition of ‘pered definition of personal data, sonal data’ by the EU Member illegal acquisition of person- States as stated in the Genal data by third parties through eral Data Protection Regulaservice providers and the con- tion (GDPR) and the re-evalutroversy of government surveil- ation of the definition every five
By Öykü Talı years so as to keep up with technological advancements. Another crucial discussion focused on the ‘right to be forgotten’. LIBE I mainly focused on three different levels of data protection. The first level is the active personal information protection; the second level concerns information and data sharing by official pages. These are to be implemented with the amendments to the GDRP. The third level was about one’s information shared by other people. This information can however not be deleted as this would endanger the freedom of speech. Hence, the third level is not taken into consideration within the resolution. LIBE I mainly focused on defining concepts such as suspected citizens and has thus laid a stable groundwork for a consistent resolution.
The coexistence of European religions Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs II Imagine you are at a concert. You yourself are pretty tall so you can see everything that is happening on stage. Your slightly shorter friend Dorothea, who came with you, can however hardly see what is happening and your very short friend Alexandre cannot see anything at all. Say that you are all handed equally sized boxes to stand on so as to see better. May seem like a good idea, but in practice this would only mean that you, who can already see really well, can just see even better. Dorothea can now just see but Alexandre still cannot see anything. Would it not then have been better if you were given boxes of a size taking your initial height into consideration?
for instance the ban on wearing religious symbols in public places that has been feverishly debated in several European countries and also in LIBE II. At first it might seem like a fair deal that simply no one gets to wear them, but in practice this ban affects a non-religious person a lot less than a very religious person to whom wearing a headscarf for example is very important. Having this in mind, is this really such a fair deal?
Europe is an arena for many different cultural and thus also religious backgrounds. United in our diversity, yet sharing a set of common fundamental values is one of the very core aspects of the European comThis is a metaphor brought to munity, but how do we estabthe table by the members of lish unity and diversity without LIBE II, which was used to illus- creating tensions? Well, what trate how same conditions for better place to discuss this everyone does not necessarily than in a room where 14 differmean equality, followed by dis- ent nationalities are assembled? cussions on input equality (equal size boxes) vs. output equal- Multiculturalism has not failed ity (different size boxes). Take entirely, but yes, some things
By Emilie Tilstam are malfunctioning. The way minorities are viewed by media and the majority of the population needs to change, and Europe should become more tolerant and opt for integration rather than assimilation. Another interesting discussion has been that on the limits and entitlements of democracy. Letting someone say exactly what she or he wants can seem discriminating towards someone else, but how much can it be controlled without inhibiting the freedom of speech? All the religious bans that are up for discussion, are they there to protect some sort of ‘Europeaness’ or are they simply an attack on religious rights? The question marks are many, but one common starting point is clear – just as in Europe as well as in our own committee rooms, we are all here and we all want to be recognised and respected for what we are and where we come from.
Game of Thrones Committee on Security and Defence
Egypt is suffering from numerous conflicts. The country has passed through hard times, trying to become a more democratic state, but all the attempts have been unsuccessful, as the quickly-changing authorities care more about their power than about social values. After Hosni Mubarak resigned from government in 2011 and gave control of the country to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, the first democratic elections led to the victory of the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate, Mohammed Morsi, who tried to reshape Egypt into a much more Islamist state. Slowly, society turned against Morsi, giving the army the chance to take over the government in July this year. For now, Egypt, mired in strife, cannot tackle the issue by itself and needs some intervention from the outside. The Commit24
By Oleksii Prylipka
tee SEDE weighted out wheth- In addition, in order to ensure er it should be military or not. the people’s safety, the SEDE had to take into account Human The Committee realised that not Rights violations in recent times, only a democratic government which is not surprising amidst should be elected in Egypt, but the volatile and violent climate of that there are problems of social the recent years. Furthermore, and economic character that even if everything goes well and must be solved as well. The issue a democratic government is is becoming even more compli- elected, the European Union will cated, as there are different ap- still have to solve numerous ecoproaches within the international nomic, social and legal issues. community and all decisions will have an impact on it. Consider- Thus, SEDE was tasked to find a ing that, SEDE sees a non-mili- peaceful solution to Egypt’s probtary intervention as the best op- lems and the committee’s deletion to tackle the problem. The gates believe that this is possible biggest challenge, nevertheless, only through the close cooperais to make the next elections tion between the world’s and the happen as transparent and fair region’s biggest decision makas possible, in order to promote ers. Finally, they agreed that the democratic values. Unfortunate- EU will have to act as an adviser ly, even this would not ensure and support all the reforms that that the military would take a should be implemented in Egypt. step back from Egyptian politics.
Looking for comfort, striving for happiness When the more is not the merrier By Elisa Martinelli
In our hectic lives we rarely stop and think about our own life style or whether it is good for our health or not. We try to avoid huge amounts of calories and go to the gym as often as possible in order to keep fit, but we never realise that the majority of threats for our health come from those comforts we always crave for. In a century where everything is planned to be as efficient and as comfortable as possible, at least 27% of the adult population in Europe has experienced mental disorders in the past years, especially anxiety and depression. How is it possible that we can be affected by such pathologies in an easier way than thirty years ago? All the progresses made by scientific and technologic research have made our life expectancy become higher; they have also
we have or goods we may buy, the problem lies in the schemes society often imposes on us. Since we are able to get anything with the smallest possible effort, we are usually trapped in a coil where wanting more is our ordinary life motto. But this time Moreover, being used to have the more is not the merrier. As a almost everything we want and matter of fact, the more we want, we need in our hands, we are the less we care and we lose innot able to treasure and appre- terest in everything we do much ciate things and events anymore more quickly than ever before; or at least not as much as our that is when depression kicks in. parents did two decades ago. This is one of the most common Depression is now caused more reasons why signs of depression by the approach that we have toare diagnosed in 20-years-old wards life and the social patterns individuals with an increase of we stick to than its genetic bathe 68% in the last ten years. It is sis, so we can actually prevent it a paradox that in an age where in some ways. Probably the best almost anything is possible, so suggestion we can ever receive many young people start suf- is start treasuring what we have fering from such boredom and and all those moments of hapapathy towards life. It does not piness we experience instead matter how many opportunities of asking for more, incessantly. brought a more stressful lifestyle where we never have a moment to rest. People start, therefore, showing the first symptoms of anxiety and distress that are triggered by sleep deprivation and a lack of satisfaction in daily life.
Supported by the Delegation of the European Union to Georgia.
All activities of the European Youth Parliament are under the patronage of the Secretary-General of the Council of Europe
The European Youth Parliament receives support from the European Commissionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Youth in Action for its continuous activities.