Europe on Test: Narratives of Union and Disunion


“Europe on Test: Narratives of Union and Disunion” is a series of conferences under the patronage of ALLEA and hosted by selected Academies of Sciences and Humanities in various European cities. It seeks to address recent political developments and other aspects of relevance that may pose a challenge for the future of Europe as a community.

The process of European integration has arrived at a crossroads. On the one hand, an increasing sense of uncertainty towards the future, deriving from widespread fears of radical change and apprehensions of potential social and economic hardship, threaten to undermine the confidence and trust in a European identity and community. On the other hand, an ever-stronger cosmopolitan identity is evolving within Europe and being shared among citizens in the continent. Digital platforms as well as increased mobility have created a sense of belonging to a wider world and a unified Europe.

At the heart of this dialectic of “European Union and Disunion” are deeply rooted narratives shaping the way we conceive Europe. In ALLEA’s conference series “Europe on Test: Narratives of Union and Disunion”, renowned scholars shed light on the significance of such narratives from a variety of different angles – public sector, policy-making, media, science and scholarship – and within their national contexts. This conference series developed after a conference held at the British Academy in November 2016 under the title ‘European Union and Disunion: What has held Europeans together and what is dividing them?’ 

All the conferences in the series are open to the public; interested individuals are invited to engage in reflections on the future of Europe and the European Union. 


Core questions to be addressed in the conference series include: 

  • What has held Europeans together and what is dividing them?
  • What kind of Europe do we want to create, what kind of Europeans do we want to be?
  • To what extent can a united Europe provide answers to these questions?


Upcoming Conferences

Germany and Europe – Views from within and without

The Göttingen Academy of Sciences and Humanities will host the conference “Germany and Europe – Views from within and without” in the German city of Göttingen on 20 October 2018.

Presentations will be delivered in German, but English will be used as an additional language of the conference. Attendance is free, but due to limited seating, registration is required. If you wish to attend, you may register until October 10 by sending an e-mail to

Narratives of Union and Disunion – Nordic Perspective

The Council of Finnish Academies will host the conference “Europe on Test: Narratives of Union and Disunion – Nordic Perspective” at The House of The Estates in Helsinki on 14 November 2018.

If you wish to attend this conference, please register here until 31 October 2018.


The Role of Academies in Sustaining European Knowledge Societies in Times of Crisis

Location: Torino, Accademia delle Scienze di Torino

Date: 11 – 12 April 2019


Narratives of Union and Disunion 
(Exact title to be announced)

Location: Warsaw, Polish Academy of Sciences

Date: Early October 2019 (TBA)