Building Europe in times of uncertainty

The 13th edition of The State of the Union conference, the renowned annual summit for high-level reflection on the European agenda, will take place in-person in Florence on 4-6 May 2023.

Unrivalled in the quality and breadth of its sessions, The State of the Union gathers leading scientific thinkers, academics, policy makers and journalists from various disciplines for in-depth analysis and discussion on the challenges and opportunities Europe is facing in uncertain times.

#SOU2023’s panels, conversations, and addresses will foster reflection on key policy areas including:

  • Challenges to democracy
  • Geopolitics and EU priorities
  • Green transition and energy security
  • Rethinking the global economic scenario
  • The digital and tech transition

In cooperation with the local partners, the event will feature networking and social events during the days of the conference.

Speaker line-up includes

Sergio Mattarella

President of the Republic, Italy

Dubravka Šuica

Vice-President for Democracy and Demography, European Commission

Josep Borrell Fontelles

High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President, European Commission

Dita Charanzova

Vice-President, European Parliament

Tobias Billström

Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sweden

Frank Elderson

Member of the Executive Board, European Central Bank

Ditte Juul Jørgensen

Director-General for Energy, European Commission

Eva Maydell

Member, European Parliament

Venues and format

The event will take place over three days, opening on Thursday, 4 May at the EUI’s stunning hilltop hub in Fiesole. This first day will centre around an impressive programme of in-person sessions, which will explore the conference themes from an array of academic and policy perspectives. All sessions will be live streamed widely on the SOU website.

On Friday, 5 May SOU will move to Palazzo Vecchio,home to the Florence City Council. The morning will be dedicated to high-level conversations with EU leaders, heads of state, prime ministers, diplomats, academics, and journalists from Europe and beyond.

In the afternoon, the second edition of SOU4YOU will take place. The event will be dedicated to youth and civil society engagement, featuring activities in the context of a series of initiatives aimed at inspiring young people and European citizens to act as protagonists within the European democratic process at the local and national level.

On Saturday, 6 May the EUI will open the doors and gardens of Villa Salviati, the home of the Historical Archives of the European Union. The Open Day is dedicated to art, culture, and recreational activities and aims to connect the local and European communities by opening the EUI to the public.

Media Partners


The EC supports the EUI

Institutional Partners


Supporting Partners

SOU 2011-2022 Trailer