Standing in Unity, Respecting Diversity: A Survey Into Citizens’ Perspectives on the Future of Europe

Since the eurozone crisis of 2009, the future of Europe has been framed as a choice between more or less Europe, between the competing visions of EU federalists and populist nationalists. This paper demonstrates that this polarity is increasingly at odds with public perceptions of the future of Europe. European policy attitudes are characterised by a great diversity of viewpoints rooted in different values and national interests. This diversity must be respected and taken seriously. However, there is also a growing consensus about the need for a united European response to common external threats such as Russian aggression, climate change and the geopolitical conflicts affecting our economic and values systems. In a world adrift, the fl ag around which we rally is increasingly becoming European. This paper explores public opinion on four main policy areas fundamental to our future: the European economy, our common security, joint climate action and shared EU values. The research is based on 4 extensive surveys conducted in 10 EU countries between January 2020 and March 2022. They measure citizens’ perspectives both just before and after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. For this research, the Martens Centre has partnered with global research agency Glocalities, which has developed a research methodology to measure cultural diversity between EU countries and values differences within European societies.

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