Coppieters Awards 2017 to recognize Carme Forcadell

Honoring the 14th Speaker of the Parliament of Catalonia as the 2017 recipient of the Coppieters Awards

Events / Tue 26 Sep 2017 18:00

On 26th of September 2017, Centre Maurits Coppieters will honor Ms Carme Forcadell (14th Speaker of the Parliament of Catalonia) as the 2017 recipient of the Coppieters Awards at an official award ceremony in Brussels.

With this award, Coppieters will recognize Ms Forcadell’s strong commitment to the defense of the Catalan language and culture, as well as to the right of self-determination. She will be honored and thanked for her work as a political activist, grassroots organizer, civil servant and politician promoting Catalan democratic processes with dedication, tenacity and courage.

What are Coppieters awards?

The Coppieters Awards are an initiative of the Centre Maurits Coppieters to honour individuals and organizations that, like Maurits Coppieters himself used to, stand out in defence of cultural and linguistic diversity, inter-cultural dialogue, self-determination, rights of minorities, peace, democracy and a united Europe. The main objective of the Coppieters Awards is to give recognition to persons and organizations that have successfully managed to find innovative ways to advocate for and embody these values.

Who is Carme Forcadell?

Carme Forcadell is a linguist and politician with a degree in Philosophy and Communication Sciences, as well as a master’s degree in Catalan philology from the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB). Her career began working for the TV program Giravolt in the late seventies, which was the first to broadcast in Catalan and in color. Forcadell has been a civil servant within the Catalan Department of Education since 1985, working on linguistic normalization, intercultural relations and social cohesion.

She is a member of Republic Left of Catalonia party. Between 2001 and 2004, she held a seat at the ERC National Executive and later became the ERC Councilor in Sabadell (Barcelona) between 2003 and 2007. She is also one of founders of Plataforma per la Llengua, a non-governmental organisation defend and promote Catalan Language all over the Catalan-speaking territories.

Additionally, she was a founding member of the ANC (a grassroots movement of civil society groups and citizens championing a democratic, pluralistic and inclusive vision of an independent Catalonia) and its first President. During this time, she led mass rallies which took place on Catalan National Day. Each year, these gathering became more creative, innovative and ambitious. She was the public face of ANC and embodied the essence of these peaceful mass demonstrations, which impressed the world with their joyful community spirit.

In 2015, Carme Forcadell entered the Catalan Parliament as a member of the new coalition party Junts pel Sí. This was considered as an innovative move to bring civil society into government with the support of two existing parties. For the first time ever, the Catalan Parliament has a majority of members in favour of independence with Carme Forcadell elected as its President, known for her ability to cope under pressure and actively promoting democratic processes through parliamentary debate.

However, for having allowed a democratic discussion and subsequent vote on the conclusions of a study commission on the constituent process, she was summoned before the Catalan High Court. The outcome is still pending and she could find herself suspended from office.


26 of September

18:00 - 18:30
18:30 - 19:00
Award ceremony
  • Jill Evans, Member of European Parliament
  • Jan Peumans, President of the Flemish Parliament
  • Xabier Macias, President of Centre Maurits Coppieters
  • Carme Forcadell, Award recipient

The evening will be moderated by Helena Pongerberg, a freelance journalist based in Barcelona writing for EU Observer.

19:00 - 20:00

Networking and photo opportunities will follow.

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When: Tuesday 26th of September 2017, from 18:00 to 20:00
Where: L42 – Rue de la Loi 42 Wetstraat, 1040 Brussels

Get involved:

This event is invitation-only. Share your views about the event on Facebook or tweet with the hashtag #CoppietersAwards.


Media inquiries can be addressed to

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This Award and the Centre Maurits Coppieters is financially supported by the European Parliament. The European Parliament is not liable for the content of the conference nor the opinions of the speakers at the awards ceremony.

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