The Europa Bottom-Up programme was founded in December 2011 as a new programme for the Maecenata Foundation following a decision from the Foundation’s board. In October 2022, it was incorporated into the Tocqueville Forum. The starting point for the programme was the analysis that governments, parliaments and supranational bodies alone are unable to urgently promote required and desirable European integration and that the attainment of the European integration project appears to be futile without the development of a European civil society.
Action is also guided by the acknowledgement that synergies from other programmes and the Foundation’s other ways of working and networking can be utilised to achieve Europa Bottom Up’s own project goals.
Within the statutory objectives of international understanding and education, the programme is targeted at fostering European ideas through the strengthening of a European civil society. This occurs through a series of individual projects, the largest of which is the project ‘Europe and the Mediterranean.’ Within the programme, there an electronic publication series called Europa Bottom-Up. The programme also includes a plea for a Europe that prioritises the needs of its citizens.
The programme is committed to international cooperation and networking. Individual projects are always conducted with other organisations where possible.
The foundation finances this programme from its own funds but the implementation of projects is urgently dependent on targeted project funding from other foundations as well as public and private funding bodies.