The core message of the two MEPs was that despite its fragmented and multicultural composition, the European Parliament - in its role as the only directly elected institution of the European Union - makes political decisions of the highest relevance and even acts much more transparently than the vast majority of national parliaments. However, with a college of 705 mandataries, Thaler and Dorfmann agreed that it is always necessary to act strategically and forge the right coalitions.
After a short introduction to the general working, coordination and voting processes within the European Parliament, the two MEPs also presented some selected legislative dossiers from their area of responsibility to the students for discussion. Barbara Thaler, Member of the Committee on Transport and Tourism and Deputy Spokesperson for Transport of the European People's Party, emphasised the necessity of maintaining 'affordable and individual mobility', while at the same time focusing on the jointly defined climate targets until the year 2050. Herbert Dorfmann, who has been in his third legislative term in the EU Parliament since 2009, among other things, is responsible for the 'Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development'. In his speech he reflected on the current state of negotiations on the Common Agricultural Policy from 2023 to 2027. In financial terms, agricultural policy is one of the most important policy areas within the competences of the EU and its further development is of utmost importance 'especially in mountain regions with special interests such as ours'.
The fifth session of this year's Euregio Brussels School once again illustrated to the students the concrete and very direct relevance of EU decisions on the living and working reality of all citizens, regardless of their place of residence or nationality. The exchange between the students and the MEPs was correspondingly intensive. The 11th Brussels School, coordinated jointly with the Universities of Innsbruck, Bozen/Bolzano and Trento, will continue until the end of January 2022 and will conclude with a closing event with EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn.