ECB Youth Dialogue
We know that the decisions we take can have an impact on your day-to-day life. That’s why we want to make sure that, instead of just hearing about us and what we do, you also have the chance to talk with us directly.
The ECB Youth Dialogue gives you the chance to do exactly that. We hold events throughout Europe – and also online – that put you in direct contact with ECB policymakers so you can ask any questions you have and share your views with us.
Online Youth Dialogue with Luis de Guindos, December 2020
Around 200 students from the University of Cologne asked Vice-President de Guindos their questions on the ECB’s response to the coronavirus crisis, the euro area economic outlook, and climate change and central banking. The online event, which took place on 16 December, was organised in collaboration with the University of Cologne.
Young Europeans asked President Lagarde their questions on the ECB's response to the coronavirus pandemic emergency in an online youth dialogue. The event was organised together with the European Parliament as part of the European Youth Event 2020 and took place on 27 May 2020.
Participants also sent questions about their concerns for their careers, the future of Europe, digitalisation and climate change. Here are the highlights from the discussion!
President Lagarde's thoughts...
...on the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic
Viruses know no borders, so all of us are affected. However, there will still be different consequences depending on factors such as a country's situation before the pandemic and the nature of its economy. It is our collective duty to make sure that we come out of this in as balanced a way as possible.
...on countries increasing their debt
What we are investing in is what really matters. We should transform our economies and make them more efficient, productive and responsive to people's needs. We should also encourage the use of debt to invest in resisting climate change and stimulate sustainable growth.
...on European institutions working together
EU policymakers have kept in constant contact in this crisis situation in order to compare best practices and deliver a coordinated response to the pandemic. We need to respond collectively. With the right measures, we stand a chance of coming out of this together.
...on climate change
Climate change needs to be addressed collectively. This is not something that can be done in isolation. The ECB belongs to the Network for Greening the Financial System (NGFS), which brings together nearly 50 national central banks and supervisors to explore possible responses to the incredible challenge of climate change.
...on the future of young people
Young Europeans have to prepare themselves for change. We will all train over the course of time, we will acquire new skill sets, new tools. We will transform ourselves and we have to just get ready for that.Photos
More than 5000 students, from ten different countries across the eurozone, participated in the eighth edition of the Generation €uro Students’ Award – a competition that challenges teams of students from eurozone schools to suggest solutions to European monetary policy issues. The ECB invited successful teams to Frankfurt on 8 May 2019 to discover even more about central banking, and to meet former President Draghi for a Q&A session.
Here’s a taster of how Mario Draghi responded to students’ questions!
What he said…
… on how young people can shape the future of Europe
Europe works if we work together, and for this we need you. We want to hear what you have to say. We need you to get involved in debates and speak up for what you believe in. One way to do this is by taking part in the European elections. With your vote you can shape the future of Europe.
… on central banks communicating to the public
Central banks nowadays make a constant effort to be transparent and to explain their work to the general public. We have a continuous flow of information through press conferences, press statements, speeches, and youth dialogues.
… on completing the economic and monetary union
Our monetary union is not yet optimal, nor is it complete. Sharing a single currency requires deeper integration in the European Union.
… on cryptocurrencies
Cryptocurrencies are not currencies but very risky assets. A euro today is a euro tomorrow. The ECB is behind the euro, but who is behind cryptocurrencies?
… on support for the euro
Support for the euro is at a historical high of 75% of eurozone citizens. But research published by the Banque de France shows that people are convinced the euro has done more for other countries than for their own. This is probably due to the unprecedented crisis we have experienced. As the memory of the crisis fades away, we hope that this uneasiness will also disappear.
… on what he will remember most from his time as President of the ECB
In 2012, lots of people were thinking that the euro was dead. And then there was a European Council meeting which created the banking union. Markets were so discouraged at the time that they underestimated its importance. But it was a big change, it produced important results, and what this Council meeting showed is the political commitment of our leaders to the euro.
Watch the Q&A between President Draghi and the successful teams from the Generation €uro Students’ Award by following the links below.Watch the Generation €uro Students’ Award Ceremony Have a look at the photos of the event
The ECB held its sixth Youth Dialogue in partnership with Bocconi University and Debating Europe – an online platform where young people can discuss current issues with Europe’s leaders. On 13 March 2019, ECB Executive Board member Benoît Cœuré met with students to discuss the challenges faced by young Europeans today. Ahead of the event, we asked you to send in your questions for Benoît Cœuré via Twitter or by commenting on the Debating Europe platform. We added a selection of these questions to the live debate.
Here’s a taster of the discussion!
...on the importance of education
We need to redirect public spending towards education in Europe. Young students should receive the education they need to successfully compete in the global digital labour market.
...on innovation and digitalisation
We must strengthen Europe’s capacity to innovate. Public and private investment should support digitalisation in leading industries, and capital market union can play a pivotal role in allocating capital where it is most needed.
...on the role of young Europeans
You are the ones who will chart the path that decides where the currents of history will take Europe next.
...on the Italian economy
Italy’s economic situation is not a threat to the eurozone. Italy’s main challenge is to increase productivity in the longer term.
...on gender equality
Gender inequality is a limit to growth. If more women work and get equal pay, that would raise the standard of living in Europe.
...on cash in a digital age
Cash is an essential part of trust in currency. Means of payment have to be driven by social demand. We are studying digital currencies, but we still see strong demand for cash in the eurozone.
Watch the exchange of questions and answers on these and other topics between Benoît Cœuré and students of Bocconi University.
The third Youth Dialogue took place in partnership with Debating Europe – an online platform where young people can discuss current issues with Europe’s leaders.
From 17 to 23 January 2018, we asked you to send questions for President Draghi, via Twitter and Facebook, on any of the following topics:
- Europe’s economic recovery and youth unemployment
- cryptocurrencies and blockchain
- possibility of a new global economic crisis
Watch the answers President Draghi gave to some of the questions received and have a look at the debate on our social media channels!
Europe’s economic recovery and youth unemployment
The European economy has been continuously expanding for several years now and employment is higher than ever, but we have to continue improving and make sure everyone benefits.
Imagine artificial intelligence and robots cause massive (youth) unemployment. How will the ECB react?Ismail, Italy Jan, Belgium
Blockchain and cryptocurrencies
Blockchain is an innovative technology that could improve efficiency. We are assessing whether it could be used in our own services in the future. Concerning bitcoin and whether you should trust it, President Draghi advises caution, as it is not backed by any central bank or government, adding that it is not the ECB’s job to regulate it.
How can we harness blockchain technology to support the economy?Victoria, France
If you were a young university student like me, would you buy some bitcoin and keep it for safety?Italo, Italy
Global economic crisis
The last crisis was severe, but the worst of it is behind us. European countries entered the crisis with major weaknesses and were not able to react adequately. Today, significant progress has been made in many areas, making us better equipped for the future.
Do you think the EU and ECB will be able to reform enough to be able to cope with yet another big economic crisis, before the next crisis happens?Christiaan, Netherlands
Find out more
Do you want to know more about the topics of this ECB Youth Dialogue? Take a look at the following pages!
- Economic recovery and the new phase of monetary policy (Speech by Vítor Constâncio, Vice-President of the ECB, at the Opening Conference of the 20th Euro Finance Week, Frankfurt am Main, 13 November 2017)
- Sustaining openness in a dynamic global economy (Speech by Mario Draghi, President of the ECB, at the Economic Policy Symposium of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, Jackson Hole, 25 August 2017)
- Virtual or virtueless? The evolution of money in the digital age (Lecture by Yves Mersch, Member of the Executive Board of the ECB, Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum, London, 8 February 2018)
- How could new technology transform financial markets? (ECB Explainer)
- Bitcoin, money of the future? (Winning video from the Euro Video Challenge 2017, produced by Jason Halbgewachs and Michiel van Aarnhem)
- Youth unemployment in the euro area (Keynote speech by Mario Draghi, President of the ECB, for the Henry Grattan Lecture Series at Trinity College, Dublin, 22 September 2017)
- Accompanying the economic recovery (Speech by Mario Draghi, President of the ECB, at the ECB Forum on Central Banking, Sintra, 27 June 2017)
President Mario Draghi met with young Europeans on Friday, 22 September 2017, at Trinity College Dublin.
The event was organised in partnership with the Central Bank of Ireland and Trinity College Dublin.
Will blockchain have a role in the future? Is the potential for house price bubbles a growing concern for the Governing Council? To what extent is forward guidance and clear communication seen as a key component of modern central banks?
Watch the exchange of questions and answers on these and other topics between President Draghi and economics students from Trinity College Dublin.
President Mario Draghi hosted the ECB’s first Youth Dialogue in Lisbon organised in partnership with the Banco de Portugal and ISEG – Lisbon School of Economics and Management.
Explore the discussion about the meaning of innovation and productivity for young people.
Find out more about related content
Youth dialogues on banking supervision topics
The ECB hosts specific events to connect with youth on banking supervision. Find out more on our banking supervision website.Banking supervision youth dialogues