This week’s plenary session kicked off with a presentation by Irini Pari, our Vice-President responsible for communication matters, of the Committee’s communication strategy for the next five years. Irini, who is, as she put it, ‘A Greek, a Belgian and a passionate European’ gave convincing reasons as to why and how the Committee and its members had a special role to play. Above all, she argued, the Committee’s perceived weaknesses are actually its strengths; being ‘only’ a consultative body, it can speak its mind, and the fact that its members are part-time volunteers gives the Committee a special and unique authenticity. Irini stressed the fundamental difference between information and communication, which latter was as much about listening; ‘two monologues do not make a dialogue’. In the ensuing debate, the new strategy that Irini has so passionately and eloquently championed was soundly endorsed. It was a great start to the plenary!