Prague European Summit
27 – 29 May 2019
The fifth jubilee year of the Prague European Summit was held at the end of May 2019 as the first high-level discussion forum in the EU following the European Parliamentary elections. As an initiative of the EUROPEUM
Institute for European Policy and the Institute of International Relations, and under the patronage of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, the representation of the European Commission in the Czech Republic and the City of Prague, the Prague European Summit has been established to trigger a strategic and open debate on the future of the European Union among high-level political representatives, government officials, business representatives, academics and journalists from the Czech Republic, EU countries, V4 countries and further afield. Reflecting on the critical junctures facing the EU, whether related to the election and the forthcoming new Commission, Brexit or the culmination of the Bratislava Process at the summit in Sibiu, over the course of three days, encompassing more than 20 panels and speeches, experts discussed topics including European sovereignty and strategic autonomy, challenges to the rule of law and the EU’s fundamental values, the use of big data in public policy, the effects of ‘industrial revolution 4.0’ on European societies, as well as the competitiveness of Europe in the field of artificial intelligence and virtual reality.
The core of the summit took place at Czernin Palace, headquarters of the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Two ‘Urban Talks’ were held in Prague, one also in Brno, and ‘Discussion Breakfasts’ were hosted by the French (in cooperation with the Swedish) and Romanian embassies, as well as the Institute for Politics and Society and American Center. As per tradition, the prestigious ‘Vision for Europe’ Award ceremony was a highlight of the Prague European Summit. Additionally, the Future European Leaders Forum brought together more than 30 exceptional young people in the fields of politics, science, business, media and civil society for networking and capacity building.
The Prague European Summit has been facilitating high-level strategic and open debates on the actual challenges that Europe, and the European Union in particular, are facing since 2015 and the fifth anniversary furthered this legacy. As European Ombudsman Emily O’Reilly, the recipient of the 2018 ‘Vision for Europe’ Award has stated: “It’s not Brussels, it’s not Strasbourg, it’s not Luxembourg. It is outside of the usual venues in which we discuss the future of Europe and I think when people come, particularly here, they get a different perspective, they hear different voices and I think that is very important.