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Has the Refugee Crisis Damaged Citizens’ Trust in the EU Project?

The surge in refugee arrivals in Europe is transforming the European debate. This public event will explore how the European political response to the current migration and asylum crisis has affected citizen’s trust in the European Union project. The session will take place in the context of the Vienna Policy Conference, which is organized by the Open Society Foundations and ERSTE Stiftung.

This year the conference will delve into one of the most important trends driving change in European politics: the dramatic drop in public trust in many political institutions. Policy researchers, activists, and leading European thinkers and political figures will discuss new research into, and analysis of, the causes and consequences of the trust gap across Europe.


  • Ivan Krastev is chairman of the Centre for Liberal Strategies, Sofia, and permanent fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM), Vienna.
  • Katarina Mathernová is deputy director general for the European Commission.
  • Wolfgang Petritsch is president of the Austrian Marshall Plan Foundation.
  • Kilian Kleinschmidt is senior field coordinator for the Zaatari refugee camp (Jordan) at the UNHCR.
  • Petra Pinzler (moderator) is a journalist and author.

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