July 26, 2022

200 young Europeans discuss contemporary challenges at the 96th International Session of the European Youth Parliament in Riga

The Riga 2022 International Session of the European Youth Parliament (EYP) is taking place from the 23rd to the 31st of July. The project brings together over 200 participants from 30 European countries to discuss the role of technology and digitalisation in today’s European society. During the event, which is featured as part of the European Year of Youth, the young participants debate and develop solutions for issues on the European agenda, such as automation in the labour market or the use of drones in military conflicts.

The young participants from all over Europe will receive input from a team of experts, including Mārtiņš Zemītis, Economic Advisor at the European Commission Representation; Ance Jaks, Development Manager at the Mission Possible Foundation; Richards Križanovskis, co-founder of the HR technology company UpMatched; Kari Kasper, Associate Lawyer at the United Nations Refugee Agency; Tomass Pildegovičs, Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge and expert at the NATO Centre for Strategic Communication, will help the young people to develop their ideas further.

One of the main youth organisers from the European Youth Parliament Latvia, Dana Kristiāna Skrupska, says about the event: “The European Youth Parliament is an excellent non-formal education platform that gives young people the opportunity to discuss topics of current interest in Europe in a simple and accessible way. The conference gives all participants the opportunity to share their views with each other and to meet decision-makers, politicians and experts in different fields – thus promoting young people’s involvement in decision-making.”

Speakers and guests of honour of the event include Deputy Chairman of the Riga City Council Edvards Smiltēns; Member of the European Parliament Dace Melbārde and Head of the European Commission Representation in Latvia Zane Petre. From the Schwarzkopf Foundation Young Europe, we are being joined by André Schmitz-Schwarzkopf, Chairman of the Board and Luisa Seiler, Executive Director. On 27th of July a panel discussion on the future of the European transport sector will take place in cooperation with the Rail Baltica project, bringing together MEP Ivars Ījabs as well as representatives of Rail Baltica and the European Youth Parliament.

The International Session will culminate in a discussion of the resolutions on the 29th and 30th of July. The resolutions are the final collection of policy visions that young people have formed as a result of discussion and debate throughout the session.

The conference is implemented within the framework of the Erasmus+ programme of the International Youth Programme Agency, in cooperation with the main sponsors MAK IT, Gravity Team, Turaidas kvartāls, Sudraba Arhitektūta, AS Balta, Austris Consulting, and supported by the UNHCR; German Savings Bank Association and Mercator Foundation.

You can find more information about the Riga International Session here.

This year, the European Youth Parliament celebrates its 35th anniversary. Through events such as the International Session in Riga, the European Youth Parliament connects youth across borders and provides space for political debate, personal development, and exchange of ideas. In this way, the organisation makes an important contribution to European understanding and the strengthening of civic spaces.