I. Description of the initial situation for the project
The aim of the project “EU Perceptions and Reality in Moldova” is to open up communication channels to those parts of the population far removed from the EU with the help of local and media discussion and communication formats in order to promote the basic European discourse on values. The project will also show how the EU association process and its underlying norms, values and standards can contribute to the socio-economic participation of all population groups and to Moldova’s modernisation. The project will be coordinated with ongoing and planned activities and projects of state and non-state actors on the ground, in particular those of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration, the EU Delegation (Strategic communication and support to mass-media in Moldova) but also of other bilateral organisations (GIZ, KAS, EU StratCom) and local NGOs.
II. The objective of the project
The overall objective of the project is to make a substantial contribution to overcoming the social dividing lines of the EU rapprochement process in Moldova by promoting informed intra-societal dialogue on the values and norms underlying the Association Agreement and the concrete benefits of modernising Moldova in the course of the EU rapprochement process.
To this end, the project has three specific objectives:
- The opening of communication channels to those parts of the population far removed from the EU with the help of local and media communication formats in order to promote the basic European discourse on values and to counteract the formation of myths and disinformation through fact-checking.
- To provide information on the advantages of the Association Agreement and the use of EU funding to young Moldovans and representatives of ethnic groups that tend to be critical of the EU (Bulgarians, Ukrainians, Russians, Gagauz, Roma) and thus to promote support for the EU approximation course.
- To communicate success stories of the support provided by the EU and its member states to the public through media preparation (videos) and to promote civil society exchange (with Germany) on EU communication.
III. Target persons/groups
The main target groups of the project are EU-distant population groups located both in the rural regions of Moldova and thus outside Chişinău, as well as in the autonomous region of Gagauzia and Transnistria. In particular, those sections of the population who are sceptical about EU rapprochement because they fear a socio-economic disadvantage (e.g. farmers who traditionally sell their products on the Russian market) are targeted. But also representatives of the different ethnic groups who expect a further social disintegration in the course of the EU rapprochement. In addition, a bridge will be built to media representatives (national and regional) in order to reach the population nationwide. A public dissemination of the activities and their results is expected to have a change effect beyond the direct participants in the measures to the broad local population. When implementing the measures, attention will be paid to a gender-balanced composition of the participants.
IV. Implementing Partners:
- Institute for European Politics, Berlin
- Institute for European Policies and Reforms (IPRE)
- Institute for Strategic Initiatives (IPIS)
V. Key Stakeholders:
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration
- EU Delegation (ex. EU’s StratCom Project)
- Canal Regional
- Pro-Europa Centers
VI. Project Activities
- Development of 4 fact checks(RU/RO/ENG) on controversial issues of the EU association of the Republic of Moldova in the political, economic, social and cultural fields, as a basis for discussion of public debates at local level.
- 4 EU Dialogue events at local level(4×1 day, in Comrat/Drochia/Ribnita/Soldanesti/ Basarabeasca/ Causeni/ Floresti/ Glodeni) with remote populations, representatives of ethnic groups, media representatives and authorities at local level to understand EU association (fact-check and citizens’ dialogue).
- 4 TV debates at local level
(Comrat/Drochia/Soldanesti/Basarabeasca/Causeni/Floresti/Glodeni) on the invalidation of prejudices (myths and truths) against EU association in Moldova and discussion of fact checks.
- 4 workshopsfor (young) representatives of (ethnic) groups who tend to be remote from the EU on EU association (4×1 day, Comrat, Taraclia, Balti, Orhei or Nisporeni, Ungheni) as EU awareness workshops with a focus on factual knowledge about the Association Agreement and on the use of EU funding.
- 4 videos on EU Success stories(RU/RO/ENG) in the Republic of Moldova for example inviting EU delegation and representatives of individual EU Member States (in particular Germany/France/Nordic-Baltic countries).
- Study trip for civil society representatives of German European political associations, journalists and scientists (3 days, Chişinău) on the question of how European politics and its underlying norms and values can be communicated and how EU myth formation can be countered.
- Final public conference(1×1 day) to multiply the findings from the local project activities. Presentation of the fact checks as well as experiences gained in the debilitation of EU myths.
VII. Visibility and outreach
The project contains a distinct visibility and communication component, which is underlined by the high-profile character of a large part of the planned project measures. This ensures media attention for the project and the visibility of the project results with regular TV debates, project videos and fact checks over the entire duration of the project. In addition, the project will report on all project events via their social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, etc.), which will significantly increase the reach of the project content.