In the evening, the President hosted a working dinner to discuss how the Committee could further build on its Programme for Europe. The Committee is already hard at work on a follow-up to the Programme in the form of a contribution to the preparations for the Copenhagen climate change summit. This follow-up resolution will be debated and adopted in our 4-5 November plenary session. But beyond this there is a larger window of opportunity beckoning for the Committee. The newly re-appointed President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, already set out his political guidelines on 3 September. These include broad strategic goals such as making a successful exit from the current crisis, leading on climate change, developing new sources of sustainable growth, advancing a ‘people’s Europe’ and opening a new era for a ‘Global Europe’. In the coming months, Barroso and his new team will have to translate these broad goals into policy proposals for the Commission’s five-year mandate and also for each year’s work programme. Now, then, is the moment for the Committee to make its voice heard. Where does organised civil society see the priorities in all of this? And that is what President Sepi had invited members and staff to discuss. It was a long day but a very productive one.