General Assembly 2011 / activity report: Our network is “above all a collective knowledge composed of multiple knowledges”

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The new design and reshuffled content of the 2010 activity report illustrate the evolution of the Forum. Indeed, for the first time, the yearly report is published as a brochure. Obviously, this first edition “new look” uses the new visual identity of the Efus, with the “rhizome” logo, representing the organisation of the network itself: open, diversified and without hierarchy.


“Cities help cities, this is the raison d’être of our network, and it is also what guides the work carried by our Paris-based technical staff,” writes Michel Marcus, Efus Executive Director, in his opening editorial. He adds: “Our objectives are to find information in the network, create information and disseminate it. We aim at favouring debate and reactions.”
The 2010 report aims at “focusing more on the network and less on what surrounds it” because “the network is above all a collective knowledge, composed of multiple knowledges about a series of themes, places and practices.” .
Michel Marcus emphasised some of the themes covered in the report:

“First, trafficking in human beings: we do not pay enough attention to this issue,” he said. “We used to focus more on this theme in the past, and now we have to tackle it again and work more on it.”
Another important theme: organised crime. “Italians work a lot on this issue, but they are not the only ones. This issue is becoming more and more international, and it affects also other countries such as Germany and the Netherlands. Efus will work more on this issue.”
On parenting: Michel Marcus said that we must pay more attention to “how young people integrate to society, and how the State and cities help them to do so”.
Concerning the development of the network: Michel Marcus said that the fact that the number of members has not increased may be preoccupying, but noted that members are “more active, faithful and involved”. Also, he added,“The active involvement of Guilherme Pinto [President of the Forum], who participates in conferences throughout  Europe, strengthens our political presence. The Forum nowadays represents 30 million European citizens,” he said.
Finally, concerning Efus presence in European institutions and its role in European policy, Michel Marcus noted that “the European Commission’s programmes are more focused on migrations and less on prevention”. This is why, he said, “Efus must re-assert its political voice, because our position regarding migrations and prevention is becoming an exception in Europe. Europe is gradually closing itself.”
After Michel Marcus’ speech, Erich Marks presented the financial balance of Efus for 2010, and announced that the Executive Committee wants to increase yearly subscriptions according to the average inflation rate in the EU. The question remains which indicators to choose. Erich Marks suggested the Forum uses the European Central Bank yearly average rate. This proposal was later adopted by the General Assembly.