The programme Europa Bottom-Up was begun in December 2011 following a decision by the Maecenata Board. Since then it has become an important part of the foundation’s activities. The basis of the programme was the idea, that governments, parliaments, and supranational organisations alone are not capable of promoting the so desperately needed notion of European unity and that without the development of a European civil society, the realisation of the European project of unification seems unattainable.
The programme is also guided by the fact, that the synergies of Maecenata’s other programmes and networks can contribute to the accomplishment of its goals. These are pursued by means of individual projects. These include:
- The poster campaign “Europe is ‘us’, not ‘them’’,
- The project ‘Europe and the Mediterranean’, held in two conferences 2013 and 2015: results published in the publication series Europa Bottom-Up, volumes 11 and 12; a third conference currently in preparation,
- Participation in the German Foundation Initiative “Engagierte Europäer” (“The committed Europeans”) with 11 other foundations,
- Participation in Europe Weeks and similar functions,
- Written commentaries on current European political issues such as Brexit.
The programme also places an emphasis on international cooperation and networking. Whenever possible, individual projects are conducted in cooperation with other bodies. The foundation participates in various international projects.
The foundation funds the programme itself, but urgently requires private and public grants to implement its projects.
The programme includes the fully quotable electronic publication series Europa Bottom-Up (as yet 16 editions: www.ebu.maecenata.eu)