We believe there’s an appetite for change, and that finding new narratives is an important piece of the puzzle
We are happy to share with you a new guide to ways to talk about the sustainable, equitable, inclusive, democratic societies we want in Europe.
This guide has been put together by a collection of civil society and trade union groups committed to building better societies in Europe.
It summarises the findings of a 6–month collaboration including focus groups in five countries aiming to find new hopeful narratives, and makes these core recommendations:
- Create conversations.
- Bring Europe closer to people and their communities.
- Balance urgency with hope.
- Lead with strong empathy and equality values.
- Encourage participation and stress the power people have to change things but where possible emphasise the empathic motivation behind mobilisation.
- Be cautious when talking about the need for ‘greater participation’, it can quickly lead to negative associations with democratic failures and the rise of the far right.
- Use the imagery of construction to help talk about community, co-operation and support.
- Beware the difficulty of reframing—for example when we talk about ‘open borders’ people still hear ‘borders’.
- Use specific, hopeful examples that signify more caring and equal European societies.
Read the full findings and recommendations at: www.foeeurope.org/how-to-talk-about-the-societies-we-want-in-Europe
Our recommendations are intended for campaigners, communicators, activists and all those who want to create opportunities for citizens to have conversations about the kind of Europe they want to live in. We hope you will make use of them and pass them on.
We would be happy to get your feedback, and to hear about other efforts to inspire more hopeful conversations about the societies we want. You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Francesca Gater, Friends of the Earth Europe
On behalf of CONCORD—European NGO confederation for Relief and Development, Fair Trade Advocacy Office, European Trade Union Confederation, European Women’s Lobby, European Youth Forum, RIPESS EU—Solidarity Economy Europe, WeMove.eu and Public Interest Research Centre.