The summer school will be held online this year,
until we can welcome you again in Cluny in 2022!

What change for Europe?
Ecological transition and citizen action

Every year in July, the summer school of the European College of Cluny offers a unique opportunity to participants coming from all over Europe and beyond, to share their thoughts and ideas in order to better understand the challenges currently facing Europe. This year, in consideration of the health situation related to the Covid-19 pandemic, the summer school will be held online over two days, and will deal with the changes and the kind of transition necessary to achieve, in order to better preserve and respect our planet. The main topics to be addressed, all revolving around the main theme, will be: models of individual and collective responsibility, the functioning of the coordination amongst different levels of politics (European, national and local), the role of media coverage, and the importance of activism, with special attention to the one promoted by the young generation. With the contribution of experts, professionals, policy-makers and activists, and through an interdisciplinary method of study which balances conferences, round-tables, interactive workshop, the seminar will enable the participants to collectively reflect in order to build up scenarios and proposals, allowing everyone to become an actor in this field.

We look forward to have you on board!


years of experience





With 19 years of experience and over 800 participants from over 50 countries.

Want to know more?


Summer school 2021

2021 Topic:  What change for Europe? Ecological transition and citizen action

Where? Online
When? Friday  2nd July – Saturday 3th July 2021

What? See Program
How? See Method & Aims

About the Theme

One of the distinctive features of contemporary democracies in Europe is the emergence of the social state, which has, since its creation, had the task of achieving a conciliation between the principles of individual freedom and social solidarity. The Covid-19 pandemic has shown the striking conflict within these democracies, as these two principles are increasingly presented as antagonistic. However, what the pandemic accentuated was already very much present through the environmental crisis that embraces the whole planet and radically questions our means of life and the very organisation of our societies.

At this time of crisis, sustainable development and environmental issues became even more a priority for societies as well as for national and international organisations. Citizens, of all ages and from all continents, are increasingly concerned about the challenges they face, and are trying to make their voices heard by participating in many movements.

Some national governments have tried to adopt new laws to support sustainable development and climate protection (e.g. tax on plastics or fuel tax increases). In the same perspective, the EU is also stepping up measures to protect the environment and the climate (e.g. European Green Deal, a quarter of the 2021 -2027 budget targeting climate ambitions) and to ensure the EU’s transition to a sustainable economy. The EU also gives more scope to citizens’ action and opinion by linking their projects (e.g. Conference on the Future of Europe or the European Climate Pact) to citizen, national, local and associative activities.

Despite these efforts and awareness of the issue, doubts about our collective commitment to preserve our resources and lives on our planet remain.

Fundamental questions therefore arise which the European College of Cluny invites you to reflect during its 2021 summer seminar.

The participants will attempt to develop innovative solutions to address the key issues identified during the seminar.

The Place

During the summer school, you will live and work in the historical site of the Cluny Abbey, which was a Benedictine monastery in Cluny, Burgundy, France. It was built in the Romanesque style, with three churches built in succession from the 10th to the early 12th centuries.

1100 Years of History

Cluny, a spiritual and political capital in the Middle Ages, is now a major tourist and cultural attraction and a regional equestrian centre in the heart of the land of “Great Art and Good Living”.

Due to the current health crisis, the 2021 summer school will be held online, but we hope to be able to welcome you in Cluny very soon!


  • From 1.00 pm: Connection 
  • 1.30 pm: Opening speech – Introduction 
  • 2.00 pm – 3.00 pm: Opening Conference with Marine YZQUIERDO, lawyer in the field of renewable energy, member of the association “Notre Affaire à Tous”.
  • 3.00 pm – 3.30 pm:  “An example of European citizen action: education for an écological transition through art” with Guila Clara KESSOUS, teacher and researcher at Harvard University, coach, UNESCO Artist for Peace, “Rising Talent 2020” of  Women’s Forum for the Economy and Society.
  • 4.00 pm: Presentation of participants
  • 4.30 pm – 6.00 pm: Worshop  “Liberty vs. Solidarity. A conflict of principles that harms the environment?”
  • 6.30 pm: European aperitif on line – Conviviality time
  • 10.00 am – 12.00 am: Round table “Climate policies – from Brussels to the municipalities” with Joana VIEIRA DA SILVA, International climate change * Portugal’s Acting Head of Delegation at UNFCCC, Portuguese Environment Agency – Elena VISNAR MALINOVSKA, head of Unit, Adaptation to climate change, DG CLIMA, European Commission – Philippe LAMBERTS, member of the European Parliament and Jean-Luc DELPEUCH, Engineer, president of the Community of Communes of Clunisois
  • 1.30 pm – 3.00 pm: Lecture “Transition, adjustment or attunement? Which milieus are we talking about?” with Mario NEVE, professor of geography, Lab Head Interdisciplinary City-Landscape Lab LABIRINTO, University of Bologna, Ravenna Campus – Department of Cultural Heritage
  • 3.30 pm – 5.00 pm: Round table “Communicating and acting for change” with Anke WONNEGERGER, IECA – International Environmental Communication Association and Janet MILONGO, CAN – Climate Action Network
  • 5.00 pm:  Conclusion


The main aims of the summer school of the European College of Cluny are to:

  • Share and exchange
  • Develop critical thinking skills
  • Analyse and evaluate
  • Compare and differentiate
  • Propose innovative solutions

By coming to Cluny, you will have the opportunity to discover French national heritage and to live a unique multicultural experience with young people from all over Europe.

The Method

The “Cluny method” is the development of collective intelligence that makes use of interdisciplinarity and plurilingualism. The facilitators will invite the participants to develop their autonomy and their self-learning abilities, to appropriate innovative methods of co-construction based on mutual learning.

Conferences, training sessions and working groups will enable you to develop negotiation skills and to gain an overview of the main issues at stake.

How to Apply

  • Download the registration form  here then fill in the “Apply now” form

Registration deadline: June 29, 2021



Selection Criteria:

Minimum age: candidates must be born before 1st January 2003
Personal motivation is very important
Geographic diversity: 3 to 4 candidates per EU member states; 1 to 2 participants for non-European countries
Linguistic competences: The understanding of both languages is necessary therefore a minimum level of B2 in French or in English is expected (minimum B1 for the other language).

Apart from language skills, no other academic or professional qualifications are required. We explicitly encourage participants from various fields to apply.

Time until Convention...

What seduced me in the European College of Cluny summer seminar proposal was both the framework and the title.

I really enjoyed the exchanges that the seminar allowed, the idea that we come from very different backgrounds, and not only geographical, and that we share common values. And I really liked the teamwork and I enjoyed it here.

This is the first time I’ve been to Cluny and it’s beautiful.

Juliette, France

I really enjoyed exploring even further how the European institutions work and I learned a lot, especially during the course on negotiation and the conference given by MEP Philippe Lamberts.

I met a lot of people and even if I don’t speak French very well, it was easy to switch from one language to another and thus to learn differently.

Numan, Afhganistan

I am a student in international relations and history and I attended the summer school thanks to Facebook. It was the theme that really inspired me.

I loved the course on negotiation, as well as the atmosphere throughout the seminar. It was a very benevolent atmosphere from beginning to end.

Klara, Croatia

For me, the most impressive course was the Citizen Jury. This is the first time I have played a role and tried to find both solutions and compromises. It was very important to use our listening skills.

Shigi, China, Your Content Goes Here

At first, it was rather complicated for me to quit the university mold  and understand the organisation and teaching methods of this summer seminar, but once the ” culture shock” was over, I found it very interesting. I really learned from the negotiation class and the role-playing. I realised that without prior training, it is very difficult to engage in negotiation work, for example.

Fanny, France, Your Content Goes Here

This was the first time I attended a summer seminar and the first time I really spoke French outside of my classes. It was very comfortable because when I felt lost, I could easily switch back to English.

I learnt a lot from the Citizen Jury. It was a fairly complete simulation, a good illustration of the difficulties that can be encountered when starting a project construction or negotiation process. This time, even if it wasn’t “real”, we came to some sort of consensus based on compromise, even if it wasn’t very easy.

Balazs, Hongrie, Your Content Goes Here

It was someone from my association who told me about the summer seminar and I am truly convinced that Europe can only be built with “true meetings”. I want to help change things in Europe and advance the idea of Europe among citizens. I am one of those people who, as soon as they are faced with a problem, want to find a solution to it.

So it was important to meet and I particularly enjoyed the group work. It shows that some projects can succeed, or at least move forward. When I arrived here, I thought “when there is a project, there is a way”, I think that even more after a few days of working with other young people.

Faedran, Belgium, Your Content Goes Here

Here, I have the impression of a great openness of mind: I’ve been here for several days and I cannot distinguish if this openness of mind is due to the fact that we are all very different in our education and our characters, or to the fact that we really come from different countries and different cultures.

Lancelot, France, Your Content Goes Here

Registration Fees:

Limited places, hurry up to register!


  • Donation to the association CCIC-Collège Européen de Cluny – Free

What You Receive

  • Access to seminar, lecture and online tools – Full access
  • Application fee 
  • Certificate of participation

Partnerships and Support

Many well-known personalities support the Convention of Young European Citizens:

  • Philippe Lamberts, MEP
  • Jan Sokol, Former minister of Education in the Czech Republic
  • Vladimir Spidla, Former Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, former European Commissioner
  • Bronislaw Geremek, Former minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland, former MEP
  • Michel Rocard, Former Prime Minister of France, former MEP
  • Rolands Lappuke, Former Ambassador of Latvia in France
  • Pavel Fischer, Former Ambassador of the Czech Republic in France
  • Viviane Reding, Former MEP, former member of the European Commission
  • Pascal Lamy, Former WTO Director-General, former European Commissioner
  • Vaclav Havel, Former president of the Czech Republic
  • Elmar Brok, MEP
  • Pervenche Berès, MEP

The 2011 Convention was held under the patronage of Mr. Herman Van Rompuy, former President of the European Council.

Partners and support

To apply, upload the registration form :

    Surname (family name):

    E-mail address:
    Postal Address:
    Year of Birth:

    Registration form (Word, DOC, PDF, RTF):