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Vision Europe Summit 2015: Leaders of eight think tanks and foundations sign conference declaration

At the occasion of the summit, leaders from the seven convening think tanks and foundations and from one associated think tank signed the conference declaration “Redesigning European welfare states: A time for action".

The declaration is based on the policy briefs which have been published at the summit and the discussions at the conference. It contains seven constructive thoughts as input for the political debate at national and EU levels.

The declaration affirms the urgency to act now if we are to guarantee viable welfare systems in the future. Welfare states are a defining feature of Europe, but reforms will be necessary both at national and at EU-level. The following principles are emphasized in the declaration.

From risk-sharing to risk-avoidance: Enhancing social investment

From welfare states to welfare societies: Developing the role of the state

Tackle inequality within and between EU-member states to create a virtuous cycle

Reconcile intergenerational equity with sustainability

Tear down obstacles to labour market integration

Renew welfare state governance through greater policy integration

Clarify the role of the EU and make its actions complementary to national welfare policies


Based on these key principles, the Bertelsmann Stiftung and the partners of Vision Europe will continue to foster the debate on the future of welfare states in Europe.

Publication: Vision Europe Summit Conference Declaration

Redesigning European Welfare States: A Time for Action.