Empowering European educators to promote democratic values in digital spaces


The Digital Europe fellowship is jointly offered by the Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft and the Schwarzkopf Foundation Young Europe. It supports efforts by European educators to promote democratic values in digital spaces. In 2021, four fellowships were awarded to young European educators whose work engages with the issues of the digital public sphere and young people’s participation in Europe. 

Over a period of six months, the fellows developed and delivered new workshops aimed at school students aged 13+. The goal was to bolster democratic participation in digital spaces and empower young people as democratic citizens. The fellows developed accessible, diversity-oriented teaching methods that are aligned with young people’s interests and lived experiences. 

The fellows received a monthly stipend of 450 euros as well as advice and support from the project partners’ educational experts. The programme also included networking and training seminars where they could learn more about inclusion and acquire advanced skills in areas such as media production. At the end of the project, the results of their work were published. 


The fellowship is aimed at young Europeans aged 18 to 27 who already have some initial practical experience in diversity-oriented educational work, preferably in the field of peer education. 

Previous practical experience with audio-visual media would be helpful for the task of creating new workshops, but is not essential. Being able to speak multiple languages would be a plus. 


The fellowship consists of three project stages: 

  • Conception phase: The fellows develop their workshop idea and test it at various types of secondary school. Afterwards, the workshop’s content and teaching methods are evaluated and refined.
  • European Summer School: The fellows present their workshops to members of the educational network Understanding Europe.
  • Closing event: At the end of the programme, the workshops are published and made available as open educational resources.

To learn more about the Thinking of Europe fellowship programme and how to apply, click here. If you need any further information, please feel free to contact Milad Tabesch

Show content of Kansu Ekin Tanca

Fellowship Digital Europe - Kansu

Kansu Ekin Tanca is excited to use digital participation to enhance democracy in the digital world and aims to dig deeper into the rights-based approach to digital literacy. She will host the workshop “Challenges of the digital public sphere: rights and responsibilities of being digital citizens.”

Show content of Farah Abdi


Farah Abdi believes in a diversity-oriented approach in education as a way to find solutions in challenging times. She will develop a workshop focusing on “Mis- and underrepresentation of marginalised groups: using social networks to advocate and to organize for diversity and inclusion.”

Show content of Elena Popescu

Fellowship Digital Europe - Elena

Elena Popescu’s goals are to design activities that treat students fairly and equally and to incorporate them into the future projects of her NGO “Station Europe”. She develops a workshop on “Social media campaigns: Promoting civic engagement, diversity and inclusion in the European digital public sphere”.

Show content of Davit Manukyan

Fellowship Digital Europe - Davit

In Armenia, his country of origin, Davit Manukyan sees many obstacles for the youth in terms of self-realization in civic activism. To address this, he will design a workshop that enables young people to get involved using digital tools: „Local digital communities: using familiar social media platforms to create political impact in local communities”.


Show content of Mariya Atanasova


Mariya Atanasova is a Romani activist from Bulgaria with experience in mentorship programs with Romani youths and children. She was selected for “Young European of the Year” in 2020 by the Schwarzkopf Foundation Young Europe and awarded the Woman in Youth Activism Award 2020. Mariya is a midwifery graduate and currently studying in a MA preparation program at Central European University.

Show content of Ruben Brave


Ruben Brave is a Dutch internet pioneer and board member at impactful tech or media-related organizations such as Internet Society Netherlands (ISOC) and the Dutch Startup Association (dSa). He is also a media professional and a serial entrepreneur in technology, media and telecommunication, for example as founder of the academic business incubator Entelligence b.v. for pre-seed financing and initiator of Make Media Great Again (MMGA.io)

Show content of Monika Ladmanová


Monika Ladmanová is an Advisor and Member of the Cabinet of the Vice-President for Values and Transparency, Vera Jourová, on the issues of gender equality, antidiscrimination and minorities and corporate responsibility. The lawyer has extensive experience in the non-profit and the private sector, having worked for the Soros Foundation and IBM. Monika founded several non-governmental, nonpartisan initiatives on human rights and gender equality.

Show content of Andreea Belu


Andreea Belu is a Campaigns and Communications Manager and works at European Digital Rights. She has a master in Business Administration and Philosophy from Copenhagen Business School. In the past she co-founded and served as Director of Board in the Danish NGO OptIn4Privacy. Andreea worked for a Danish privacy-enhancing-tech startup, as well as for the Danish think-do-tank DataEthics.eu.