60th Anniversary

Celebrating 60 Years of EM Ireland: 1954-2014

EMI 60th logo WEBFounded in 1954, European Movement Ireland is the longest-established Irish organisation dedicated to dealing with EU affairs, pre-dating Ireland’s membership of the Union in 1973 by almost twenty years.

Founded as the Irish Council of the European Movement in Dublin on 11 January 1954, the original objective of the organisation was to advocate for Irish membership of the European Economic Community (EEC), as the EU was then. This aim was achieved when Ireland formally joined the EEC in 1973.

Since then, the mission and vision of EM Ireland has developed and evolved to reflect the priorities of our evolving relationship with both the EU and our European neighbours.

We are proud to have celebrated 60 years of developing the connection between Ireland and Europe in 2014.


Read the Letter to Members on 60 Years of EM Ireland from EM Ireland Chairman, Maurice Pratt

“I am honoured to be President of European Movement Ireland during its 60th anniversary celebrations.  Since 1954, three years before the signing of the Treaty of Rome which established the European Economic Community, European Movement Ireland has been championing closer connection between Ireland and Europe and working to increase citizens’ awareness and understanding of the European Union.  Now, more than ever, our citizens’ engagement and appreciation of European affairs is critical.  The role the EMI played to support the successful 2013 Irish Presidency of the EU was extremely valuable.  I look forward to continuing to work with the European Movement Ireland, as an important voice in debate on European issues and as an important resource for Ireland in Europe.”

– An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny TD, President of EM Ireland

“European Movement Ireland’s core values of engagement, responsibility and accountability exemplify those which the European Union seeks to uphold. European Movement Ireland plays an important role, not just in keeping EU issues high on the public agenda, but in the quality and range of knowledge and expertise which it brings to public discourse. EMI’s  work on the European Year of Citizens launch in Dublin and on the series of regional Citizens Dialogues, coinciding with Ireland’s successful EU Presidency in 2013 was conducted, as ever, in a professional and citizen-friendly manner and I warmly congratulate them on 60 years of the European Movement.”

Former Tánaiste, Éamon Gilmore TD, Former Vice-President of EM Ireland

“The EU faces considerable challenges in the immediate future and these will demand a profound debate in Ireland.  The European Movement will play an essential role in this debate as it has in the past.”

– Peter Sutherland, Honorary President of EM Ireland

“EM Ireland has been instrumental in advancing Irish interests in Europe and in strengthening the ties between our small island nation and the rest of Europe. The work undertaken by the organisation is key to building closer relationships with our European partners and to promoting an understanding of the Union here at home.  The fact that the organisation is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year (pre-dating Ireland’s membership of the EEC by almost 20 years) is testament to the hard work and dedication of the staff, members and volunteers.  I have always had a strong working relationship with EM Ireland and look forward to building on that into the future in my capacity as Minister for European Affairs.”

– Former Minister of State for European Affairs, Paschal Donohoe TD

“European Institutions and issues can be complex and cumbersome to follow. European Movement Ireland does a superb job at deconstructing “eurojargon”, unravelling policy and practice and empowering the numerous individuals, organisations and companies it works with in Ireland to interact and connect with Europe.”

– Jillian van Turnhout, Vice Chair of EM Ireland

“European Movement Ireland has kindled the flame of enterprise and social cohesion in Ireland that are the defining hallmarks of the European Union. The European project is the most significant global institutional achievement of the 20th century. EMI has ensured that the citizens of Ireland fully engaged in this success. That is an enduring legacy and worthy of celebrating this year”.

– CEO of Ibec, Danny McCoy, Vice President of EM Ireland

Read more about EM Ireland’s History in the About Us section of the website.