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Lucky winner Laura Neijenhuis reports on how Prague empowers citizens

To learn how mayors are empowering citizens, building inclusive societies, stimulating the economy and expanding citizens’ European horizons the ALDE Group in the European Committee of the Regions created the special “envoy” prize at the 2016 ALDE Party Congress in Warsaw.

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Digital by Default: How Innovation Can Transform Public Sector

Frank Cecconi promotes public sector innovation via digital solutions: “the public sector has a crucial economic role to play as regulator, service provider and employer in modernising public services”.

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Bart Somers’ intervention on Catalonia in the European Committee of the Regions

The Catalan crisis has to stop. For a democrat and a European there is no other path but to go back to the legal framework, to the rule of law, the constitutional order.” Watch our President Bart Somers’( Open Vld) intervention on Catalonia in the European Committee of the Regions.

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What is ALDE group ?

The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) in the European Committee of the Regions (CoR) is a political group that represents liberal & democrat city mayors, regional presidents and ministers, and local and regional councillors in the process of developing EU policies and laws.  The CoR is a political assembly that exists to improve and safeguard a key part of European democracy: the proper involvement in the EU policy process of all the forms of subnational government that can be found in Europe’s Member States.


ALDE group will focus on assisting Ukraine in its decentralisation process, engaging with local authorities in the Eastern Partnership. Moreover, put strong emphasis on the key role local and regional authorities play in preventing and reversing radicalisation. Furthermore, call on the European Commission to speed up its work on the comprehensive European Agenda on Migration taking into account the key role of local and regional authorities in its implementation and will follow the work of the European Migration Forum for the integration ofthird country nationals legally residing in the Member States.

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ALDE group will continue to support European cohesion policy but want to ensure that recipients have realflexibility, but also responsibility for the spending of funds. Reform cohesion policy post-2020 so that it targets economic sectors that have the potential for strong economic growth. The use of financial instruments in cohesion policy should be increased and the awardsof grants decreased. Actively support all ways of regional cooperation, such as macro-regional strategies and European Groupings for Territorial Cooperation (EGTCs).

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ALDE group will campaign in favour of the conclusion of TTIP negotiations, focus on the advantages rather thanthe fears in public discussions, whilst taking seriously genuine concerns that arise from the localor regional level. Call for significant reductions in red tape and bureaucratic requirements for small businesses and seek to strengthen alternative dispute mechanisms for businesses. Contribute to creating favourable market conditions for SMEs as well as the European industry, that are based as much as possible on innovation support, market mechanisms, or financialinstruments, rather than long-term subsidies

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ALDE group will support the creation of the Energy Union and will encourage citizens’ participation in developingthe internal energy market, both as consumers and producers. Recognise the role that regional networks are playing in the fight against climate change, as well as the role of LRAs in the fight and mitigation of climate change. Contribute within the CoR and beyond to urge for a binding global climate change agreement and for its successful implementation, including by local and regional authorities

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ALDE group will support organic production and encourage local and regional authorities to promote the spread of organic, and where possible locally produced, food in schools and hospitals through green public procurement at local and regional level. Support the development of aquaculture which is of strategic relevance in achieving the Common Fisheries Policy goals on territorial cohesion, rural development and economic growth. Monitor the phasing out of the milk quota system to ensure that it does not destroy the existence of small producers and jobs in rural areas and have a negative impact on territorial cohesion

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ALDE group will firmly oppose any attempt to reduce the fundamental freedoms, in particular the free movement of persons and the freedom of establishment, and actively promote (cross-border) labour mobility, but fight against clear abuses of this principle. Support common European rules on data protection that ensure a high level of protection, in particular on the internet. A finebalance has to be found between new technological developments and data protection rules.

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