ECIT Foundation (on European Citizens’ Rights, Involvement and Trust) was established as a public foundation under Belgian law on 3 June 2015. In the world of European think-tanks, it fills a gap being the only one to concentrate solely on European citizenship
ECIT is becoming a resource of know-how, research, and contacts, but also one of support for civil society organisations, academics and policy makers when they work on this theme.
So far, the foundation has to its credit a book Piecing together Europe’s citizenship published in English and French.
Our Board Members are:
Find us here: 53, Rue d'Arlon at SECO (Salon for European civic organizations) in Brussels.
Go to our FAQ section to learn more, or if you want to get involved, go to 'Our initiatives' section.
Although 60% of people recognise that they are both national and European in some sense, the concept of European citizenship itself remains elusive. By bringing together its scattered elements in the ECIT Guidelines, we aim to improve an understanding of what it is and what it could become. This matters because the European Union is crisis-ridden, torn apart by centrifugal forces over the management of the Euro, asylum and immigration, free movement within the EU and the rise of extreme nationalism and xenophobia. What else but a stronger transnational citizenship can hold the EU together? The dilemma is that European citizenship as a shared concept — and not just as a practice — is needed now, but it will take a generation to build. There is no option but to start.
Our aim with this website is to provide you with an overview of research, initiatives, policy-making and European Court cases and legislation related to European citizenship:
The A-Z for the astute European citizen is an introduction to many sources.
More references are included under the Citizens’ Rights, Involvement and Trust sections.
With your help, ECIT can become a clearing house on European citizenship and a centre for dialogue among researchers, civil society activists and policy makers.
Petar Marković is the director of the ECIT Foundation, the only think-tank in Brussels devoted exclusively to the research, advocacy and promotion of European citizenship. He holds a double PhD in political theory and political science from the Free University of Brussels and LUISS in Rome and now strives to put his academic work on transnational democratic innovations countering the democratic deficit of the EU such as the ECI into practice by advocating for citizen-led politics beyond the confines of nation states. Beyond the EU, he is also devoted to the Western Balkans and its democratization. Half-Slovenian and half-Montenegrin, he prefers to be called simply – European.
Tony Venables founded the ECIT Foundation in 2015. He has a long working experience in European issues, in particular in the areas of the EU’s relationship with NGOs, free movement of people, citizenship rights, and the protection of consumers in Europe. His work also relates to transparency, governance and institutional reform of the European Union.
After graduating from the University of Cambridge with a first class degree in 1966, Tony Venables started to work as an Administrator with the Council of Europe as Secretary of different Parliamentary Committees, including the Political Affairs Committee. From 1973 to 1978, he was an administrator in the Council of Ministers’ Secretariat in the department dealing with institutional affairs and relations with the European Parliament. In 1978, he became Director of BEUC (European Bureau of Consumer Unions) and successfully built up the organisation, before leaving in April 1990 to found the European Citizen Action Service (ECAS). He then also founded the Maison des Associations Internationales as an incubator for CSOs - a formula that also inspired the Salon for European Civic Organisations (SECO) where ECIT is currently based. He was a member of the Commission’s high level panel on free movement of people chaired by Simone Veil. He recently published a book on European citizenship titled Piecing together Europe’s Citizenship: Searching for Cinderella.