26 May 2023

EFIVOS in Europe - Young people need to learn more about EU institutions - CERV-2022-CITIZENS-CIV

We have officially started the first activities for the project EFIVOS in Europe. On 8th of May, the GEYC team organised 2 focus groups at the Alexandru Ioan Cuza Theoretical High School in Bucharest, where we asked a total of 27 students what they knew about European institutions, the EU decision making process and the EU Agenda for young people, in order to evaluate their current level of knowledge and to asses the topics on which we should focus on in our future activities.

The main objectives of this project are to increase the youth's knowledge and awareness on EU institutions, policies and democratic procedures; to empower youth to counter disinformation; and to enhance the democratic participation of disengaged youth through journalism and media

The aim of the focus groups was therefore to record the existing knowledge on EU policies and make them choose topics of their interest aligned with the European Agenda. At the end of the focus groups, we discovered that the students were unfamiliar with the topics discussed and that none of them knew how the decision-making process worked at the EU level. There were some misunderstandings in their mind due to the missassociation of the way that decisions are taken at the national level, where the Parliament proposes laws and also, resulted from mismatching of bits of information heard from the media, such as the fact that Romania and Bulgaria did not enter into the Schengen Area because of the veto of Austria so the students assumed that all decisions in the EU require unanimity from member states. In terms of leaders, some of them recognised Ursula von der Leyen but no one recognised Charles Michel or could name anyone else that was part of the institutions that we discussed.

Also, the students were presented with the current EU Youth Strategy and showed its agenda with 11 objectives. They were asked to pick the objective that was the most important for them and the vast majority has picked „Quality Learning”. This showed us that young people are preoccupied and interested in the education that they receive and we will surely focus on this going forward with our future activities for the EFIVOS project.




[4] - Group of the European Youth for Change - GEYC

PIC number:


Project name and acronym:

Youth Involvement in the European Democratic Debate through Journalism— EFIVOS in Europe


Event number:


Event name:

Work package WP1


Focus Groups

In situ/online:

In situ


Romania, Bucharest










From country 1 ROMANIA:


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From total number of countries:



There were 2 Focus Groups held in „Alexandru Ioan Cuza” Theoretical Highschool from Bucharest. Their purpose was to assess the level of knowledge that the students possess in regards to European institutions, the EU decision making process and the EU Agenda for young people. When asked about what European institutions do they know, none of the students have heard about all the European institution that we wanted to point out. Pictures with all the target institutions were shown to the students and they were asked to identify them. Some were more easily recognisable for them such as the European Parliament but the majority admitted that they have not seen these institutions before in the media. They were also asked how do they think that decisions at the EU level are taken but there was a clear mix-up in the minds of the students between the role of the institutions in the EU decision making process and, in the end, no student was fully informed on the subject. Lastly, the students were asked about the EU Youth Strategy and showed its agenda with 11 objectives. None of the students had heard about it and they admitted that they saw the goals on it for the first time as no one in their personal circle, on social media or in the news have mentioned it before. They were then asked to choose one point that they considered the most important for themselves and the vast majority chose „Quality Learning”. There was one addition on the agenda where a student would have like to see a topic related to „ Means of adapting to technological changes” added.

The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein

CERV-2022-CITIZENS-CIV - 101081482