Beyond the 1914-1918 Centenary

  • Offers: Complementary views on both the causes and triggers of the war period, as well as views on the underlying roots and political choices it gave rise to.

  • Sponsors: Initiatives for a remembrance culture together with understanding of the nationalities question, of the origin and significance of European integration, and of social advances as developed and practiced since the early 20th century.

Background: In view of the forthcoming remembrance years 2014-2018 for the Centenary of the Great War, extensive government programmes are under development, in particular in France and Australia, as well as in Flanders, to be followed by many other countries.

European dimension: In the run-up to the war European powers were caught up in the on-rush of events, finding themselves triggering, stumbling, and being sucked into and then trapped in the dynamics of the unjustifiable. Beyond the contentious war guilt, the cataclysm of the Great War was characterised by an inability to embrace much needed social reforms and the failure of early European integration.

Federal formula: The shaping of social transformation and the early uptake of a multi- functional decentralised, yet united Europe, the origins of which go back at least to the Great War and its aftermath, has been hindered through the ruptures of the world war period. New possibilities for its unfolding now seem to be there to be taken up in our times.

Remembrance culture: “Beyond the 1914-1918 Centenary” sponsors initiatives for a European remembrance culture. Through seminars, media and lecture series, videos and movies, as well as annual conferences and expositions it will explore both general themes and individual experiences during the Great War.

International Symposium: “Beyond the 1914-1918 Centenary” suggests the organisation of an International Symposium in Brussels in summer 2017 in cooperation with worldwide partners about the turn-of-the-century origins of modern European integration, and the unfolding of the European agenda through a multitude of best practices in fields such as banking and economics, in medicine, in education, in architecture, and in agriculture, etc.