- Composition of Study Group
- Administrator: Ágota BAZSIK, Assistant: Dániel MAKAY
- Foreseen for the EESC Section: 21 May 2022
- Foreseen for the EESC Plenary session: 13-14 July 2022
Background and objectives of the own-initiative opinion
The further development of participatory democracy in the EU is one of the main challenges in strengthening European integration against populism and nationalism. The co-creation of services of general interest (SGIs) by civil society organisations, but also by citizens themselves, is probably the most effective tool for bringing participatory democracy to life. To this end, the main political outcome of the webinar held on 15 April 2021, co-organised by the EESC Thematic Study Group (TSG) on Services of General Interest and the Horizon 2020 Project 'Consortium Co-creation of Service Innovation in Europe' (CoSIE), bringing together 20 universities, CSOs and municipalities from nine Member States, with more than 100 participants, including both European Commission and European Parliament representatives, was to deliver an EESC own initiative opinion on the co-creation of services of general interest as a contribution to a more participative democracy in the EU.
While the final content of the OIO will be determined during the SG's work, the following topics are conceivable at this stage:
- Main outcomes of the CoSIE project and similar projects in the field of SGI co-creation;
- Importance of the co-creation of SGIs by citizens and their organisations for the further development of participatory democracy;
- A better implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights in the field of essential services (principle 20) as well in the field of social and health services (principles concerned: 4, 11, 16, 17, 18 and 19);
- The crucial role of cooperation between cities/regions, research and civil society organisations in this field, co-creation versus digitalisation of SGIs;
- Invitation for the European Commission to promote the co-creation of SGIs (e.g. added value of co-creation versus "classical" provision by private, non-profit or public organisations; possibility of making co-creation compulsory given that the purpose of SGIs is to meet the needs of each inhabitant and each community; national/regional regulations in the Member States towards facilitating co-creation; co-creation vis-à-vis Protocol 26 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union; a European and national funding proposal for innovative co-creation projects including a research component).