For some 60 years now, various measures have been introduced to bring Europeans together as citizens, based on the idea that increased cross-border encounters would create familiarity, generate a sense of community, facilitate economic activities and ultimately bring about a shared identity, however fragile at first. Town twinning and numerous exchange and mobility programmes of many kinds are cases in point. These programmes typically were anchored in the municipal, educational and vocational realms. While these mechanisms functioned well, some seem to be losing their innovative capacity; yet all reveal a structural middle-class bias. On the whole they systematically exclude those groups among which the rise of Euro-scepticism and support for anti-European political parties is the strongest, particularly the less well-educated and the new precariat. With the fiscal crises reducing the capacity of many EU member states to support the European Project financially, what mechanisms or policy instruments could, in the sense of social engineering, strengthen social bonds across borders and re-energise Europe’s social space?