Atlas Network is excited to announce the finalists for the 2020 Europe Liberty Award:
- The Center for Liberal Studies (KEFiM) in Greece, for their “Building the Library of Liberty” project
- Center for Anti-Authoritarian Studies (CAAS) in Serbia, for their “Right to Work” project
- Fundación para el Avance de la Libertad (Fundalib) in Spain, for their index ranking the economic freedom of Spain's cities.
The Europe Liberty Award celebrates think tanks throughout the region whose work most successfully encourages prosperity and human flourishing. The winner will receive a $7,000 award, and each runner-up will receive $1,500.
Tune into Europe Liberty Forum Online Wednesday, May 13, 2020 beginning at 5:00 p.m. - 5:20 p.m. Ukraine Standard Time (UTC +3; 7 hours ahead of EST) for the live announcement of the winner!
Center for Liberal Studies: Building the Library of Liberty
KEFiM’s “Building the Library of Liberty” program, carried out in partnership with local newspaper Fileleftheros, is making classical liberal texts available in Greek to a wide audience.
In the early 2000's, Greek classical liberal politician Andreas Andrianopoulos wrote a column in which he claimed that out of every 100 non-fiction political books in Greece, 95 had a Marxist worldview. Even if these numbers were slightly exaggerated, Andrianopoulos was pointing out the indisputable fact that illiberal points of view have prevailed in books available to a Greek-speaking audience.
Working with Fileleftheros, which translates to “Liberal,” KEFiM created a premium subscription service that bundles a weekly book with the regular newspaper. KEFiM provides the content, much of which has been written by Atlas Network partners, that Fileleftheros translates into Greek. Since March 2019, KEFiM has published 36 classical liberal books and has sold over 100,000 copies to Greeks throughout the country. Forty-five translations are also underway.
Each Saturday a new title is enclosed as a bundle to the newspaper. The paper is rolled out in two editions: a premium subscription with the book, and one without it that is available for a lower price. Thus far, most people prefer the book bundle and are actively paying a premium in order to get a copy of the publications.
Thanks to KEFiM’s vision, Greeks who are thirsty for the ideas of liberty have access to books that promote the ideas of limited government, individual rights, and the rule of law in their native language.
Center for Anti-Authoritarian Studies: Right to Work
Center for Anti-Authoritarian Studies (CAAS) documentary Pravo Na Rad sheds light on the struggles of entrepreneurs who are fighting excessive government regulation. To complement the film, CAAS also launched a photography exhibit that featured dozens of photos that depict the hardships entrepreneurs face just to stay afloat.
Overregulation stifles growth for all, but it adds special difficulty to entrepreneurs who struggle under the strain of excessive government forms and fees. Pravo Na Rad tells the stories of a cheese producer, an artisanal shoemaker, and a tailor who successfully run their businesses despite hurdles that threaten their existence. The cheese producer is barred from milking more than 200 litres of milk per week. While the small tailor is required to have the same materials inspected several times before she can actually use them to create a piece of clothing.
The documentary has been viewed more than 100,000 times. The week-long photography exhibition was visited by more than 170 people including journalists, economists, entrepreneurs, and politicians.
Fundación para el Avance de la Libertad: Index on economic freedom of Spain's cities
The 2019 Índice de Libertad Económica de las Ciudades Españolas, published by the Fundación para el Avance de la Libertad, illustrates how municipal policies, taxation, and regulations affect Spain’s 30 largest cities.
In a rapidly urbanizing world, where around 70 million people move from rural to urban areas every year, the power of cities to shape society is growing. In 2018, Fundación para el Avance de la Libertad published the first Index of Economic Freedom for Spain’s Cities, looking at more than a dozen basic indicators grouped in 4 areas:
A. Municipal macroeconomics
B. Municipal payroll
C. Economic interventionism at the municipal level
D. Municipal taxation
The most recent study examined data from Spain’s 50 largest cities and was released in May 2019. Copies were sent out to all city councilors, media, and other stakeholders. Fundalib recorded specific policy changes in 2019 that had been recommended in the 2018 edition, including tax cuts in Madrid, a debt adjustment plan in Granada, debt reduction in Zaragoza, and a tax freeze in Oviedo. In total, the adopted recommendations have affected an overall population of more than 7.7 million residents.
Atlas Network’s Regional Liberty Awards are made possible by the generous support of the Templeton Religion Trust, which sponsors the Templeton Freedom Award prize program and other Atlas Network programming.