Volt defined 5+1 fundamental challenge that we wish to deepen in each European country. Why 5+1? The first five challenges are adapted to the respective level (national, regional or local) in order to take into account the local situation while the challenge +1 - our proposal to reform and strengthen the European Union - remains at the European level. These five challenges are our guidelines for developing our programmes in all chapters of Volt, beyond the European level.
1. Smart State
Governments must guarantee high quality public services to their citizens and residents. Faced with challenges such as social inclusion or equal opportunities, these public services must innovate in sectors such as education, health and justice. Smart states respond to these challenges by continuously adapting with tools that allow them to become more efficient and to build a different relationship with their citizens through transparent and accountable governance.
2. Economic renaissance
Europe's economies must become the engine of social progress and offer everyone a decent standard of living. To achieve our goal, we have established three key levers: rebuilding economically competitive areas, fostering leadership in innovation, and pushing the European Union to become a "social union". This requires innovative concepts and policies to reduce bureaucracy, strengthen the labour market, rekindle innovation in our economies, invest in smart and sustainable productivity, in trade, tackle unemployment and create a more unified European social and fiscal system.
3. Social equality
Citizens and residents of the European Union must be guaranteed the same rights and opportunities. Human rights must be respected and enforced! To ensure this, we want to tackle all types of inequality and discrimination, reduce poverty and provide access to basic needs. Most importantly, no one should be left behind! We want to close the gender gap by 2025, empowering people and ending homelessness in Europe.
4. Global balance
In an interconnected world, Europe needs to assume its responsibility in global issues, in particular those concerning climate change, food security, public health, migration and refugee crises. In line with the UN's sustainable development agenda for 2030, we aim to take action to eradicate poverty, generate jobs, build a circular economy, ensure fair trade, secure livelihoods and build infrastructure for sustainable development and growth.
5. Citizen empowerment
This challenge shows how citizens can have a more direct influence on their government, what kind of information governments should publish, and how citizens can be optimally informed in order to participate in democratic life. This means that we are looking for best practices in citizen participation, transparency, ways of structuring public media and safeguarding our privacy.
+1. EU reform
The European project has brought 70 years of peace and stability to our continent. However, the EU has been shaken by crises and the rise of euroscepticism. To build on its previous achievements, the EU reform team is developing (1) ways to improve EU governance by proposing a clear institutional reform path towards a federal European Union, and (2) concrete proposals for all policy areas.