Report of the organisation working group
Long and difficult discussion, ending without a conclusion. Obviously a delicate subject for the Italians (collusion between political power and the media). No particular decision arrived at on the suggestion to create a specific working group on this theme.
Registration opens : 1st June 2002
Closes : 15th October 2002 (beyond this date the organisers in Florence will not be able to guarantee accommodation ; however this date does not exclude last minute participants who can organise their own accommodation).
Organisations should obviously try to make sure that all their members are registered before 15th October.
Deadline for workshop registrations : 15th September 2002
Registration fees : 50 Euros for the first member of each organisation, 25 Euros thereafter, 5 or 10 Euros for the young and unemployed.
Two suggestions were made ; decision should be taken at the next meeting in Thessalonica :
1. The city of Florence has offered to pay the translation costs with professional translators for 75,000 Euros (a sum which, if refused, cannot be used to cover a different expense).
Working with volunteer translator campaigners (certain of whom may also be professional translators moreover) has several advantages : knowledge of the subjects, availability, durability of contacts for subsequent European or international meetings, etc. On the other had a specific organisation would have to be put in place to cater for them in Florence. Laurent Jesover has offered to prepare for Thessalonica a budget, number of translators needed, and the practical details for preparation and accompaniment.
Provisional suggestion for languages : Italian, Spanish, English, French, German, Portuguese, Greek, Russian.
The venue planned for the ESF is perfectly adapted for our needs : 4 main halls seating 2,000-2,500 places, 36 halls seating 200-500 and 50 small halls seating 50. A special area will be reserved for the media, and the exhibition hall for organisations’ stands (for a fee).
Outside, other areas will also be available for other activities or cultural events.
Accommodation : 5,000 places in schools, community centres and the like, provided by the city of Florence. Also 5,000 hotel places.
Transport in Florence : municipal shuttle service between the various places of accommodation and the Forum.
The group has asked our Italian friends to prepare as quickly as possible a provisional budget for the ESF. The local authorities are investing heavily and providing considerable help.
Several members of the working group have declared themselves, on principle, against all sponsoring (financial or otherwise) by companies whose interest is purely commercial.
Also on principle, West Europeans must pay their own way, travelling and accommodation allowances being reserved for those from Eastern Europe and for others with limited funds (Mediterranean countries, for example).
Each national collective is directly responsible for organising the journeys to and from Florence and for finding the best value for everyone (especially for the young).
The decision is taken to launch the ESF website as soon as possible. The domain name, www.fse-esf.org, is registered with Gandi by the RAS.
The site will be managed technically by a small team comprising for the moment 4 Italians, 1 Austrian, 1 Portuguese, 1 English person and 1 French person, so that the team is in direct contact with the different national needs and information sources. The team will gradually grow in size.
The content of the site has been determined and it is up to the team to put the necessary information onto the site. The team will make suggestions to the organising committee, then to the next plenary meeting in July in order to complete the content of the site. And so on until the last general meeting, the only one authorised to decide what information should go online.
The kind of information that will go online
1- Administrative (all information given by the Florence logistics group, particularly about registration for the ESF and other useful information)
2- Preparation (all the reports from the Brussels and Vienna meetings)
3- Lists (presentation of the lists and contacts for registration : the general list (the list of those organisations already registered will be published), the lists of the 3 commissions, the regional and national lists).
4- Initiatives (possibility for each organisation to publish an announcement directly to inform about work meetings or public meetings connected to the preparation of the ESF in their own country).
5- Contacts (lists of different contacts, not only ’central’ contacts linked to the preparation of the ESF, but also others according to themes, the different actors and organisations).