From Puerta del Sol in Madrid to Pungești in Romania and from the Icelandic constitutional assembly to mass protests in Athens, people in Europe have been going out on the streets, occupying squares, organising, resisting and creating around one common idea(l): democracy. Many (if not all) of the initiatives that the six Transeuropa Caravans met on their roads were all about reclaiming citizens’ power to shape their cities, environment, societies and lives. How can we indeed speak about democracy when power is increasingly concentrated in the hands of institutions unaccountable to citizens, such as the European Central Bank, behind austerity policies affecting millions in Europe, or in corporations powerful enough to impose what is in their interest, in disregard of democratic decisions?
Unlike these top-down power relations, many initiatives and struggles start from the local level, experiment with new forms of decisionmaking processes, are horizontal, inclusive and self-organised. From resistance against undemocratic powers to organisational experiments, they put in practice real democracy in Europe.