“Should English become the third official language in Brussels?” – Philippe Van Parijs

Fullcircle provokes innovative ways of thinking, viewing and acting in the world. It is an English-speaking membership organisation that brings together innovative thinkers to Brussels and exposes them to influencers who have the foresight, ability and position to do something with them. It creates a proactive community that discusses important contemporary issues on regular gatherings, lively discourse on topics and ongoing relationships.

The launch event for the 2018/19 season invited Philippe Van Parijs – a leading Belgian philosopher and political economist to discuss his last book: Belgium, A Utopia for Our Times? (2018) and the current situation in Belgium.


Philippe van Parijs


As a two-state nation, united by an international capital, Belgium is unique with its European institutions, multilingual schools and health care system. The expert claims that with the rise of identity politics, the French and Flemish communities become more divided. He observes a few imaginative scenarios if Belgium’s regions separate in the future. But is it really possible? Where would Brussels belong – or maybe it could become an independent state one day?

Philippe Van Parijs explains that the Utopia is within our reach, if Flanders and Wallonia put aside their differences and work together. The 30-minute talk concluded that Belgium will stay united to form a genuine European utopia, followed by a lively public discussion covering intriguing questions like: Should English become the third official language or how the 19 Brussels communes could be more efficient?


More about the author:

Philippe Van Parijs directs the Hoover Chair of Economic and Social Ethics at the Catholic University of Louvain and has been a visiting fellow of many other institutions. He coordinates the Ethical Forum of the University Foundation, to promote scientific activities at Belgian universities, and, with Paul De Grauwe, the Re-Bel initiative. He is one of the founders of the Basic Income Earth Network and is best known for his work promoting a universal basic income, as well as the first systematic treatise of linguistic justice. In 2011, Philippe was awarded the Ark Prize of the Free Word for actively promoting the freedom of expression, and in 2001 the Francqui Prize, Belgium’s most generous scientific prize.


The upcoming events by Fullcircle continue to explore important topics with recognised guest speakers:

09/10/2018 – Jules Evans Philosophy for life

A British writer, philosopher and broadcaster, Jules Evan explains how Greek philosophy  can be helpful in our everyday lives to overcome adversity in our professional and personal lives. Inspired by his own experience of philosophy helping him through a life crisis, he developed ‘Philosophy for Life’, a model of well-being education that balances evidence-based techniques with ethical discussion, approaching questions of the meaning of life in a pluralistic way. From times of emotional stress to the new ‘politics of well-being’, he explains how to bring philosophy into our everyday lives, in the hope we might all get closer to the good life.

23/10/2018 – Oli Mould – Against Creativity

08/11/2018 – Julian Baggini – How the world thinks?

To see the full programme: www.fullcircle.eu