Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Monthly Archives: April 2012

Little or large? The EU budget and public perceptions

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It’s that time of year again, when the European Commission releases its draft budget for the following year, to howls of anguish and disgust from all sides.  I’ve already talked some weeks ago about how the EU budget isn’t like national budgets and shouldn’t be compared to them on a like-by-like bias, but today I want to address a slightly different […]

On the road to #rp12: Multilingual EU blogging, translations and the fascination of Presseurop

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The EU-focussed blogosphere is dominated by English language blogs. The search for multilingual EU blogging is cumbersome, even when pan-European political debates take place on issues of common interest. Some of the solutions to overcome these problems are (1) bilingual EU blogs, (2) EU bloggers writing different blogs in different languages, (3) ad hoc cross-blog translation as […]

Spanish government wants border controls for ECB meeting in Barcelona

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According to Council document published yesterday, the Spanish government wants to introduce border controls at its borders to France and at the airports of Barcelona and Girona from 28 April to  4 May. The reason: “From 2 to 4 May 2012 a meeting of the Governing Council of the European Central Bank (ECB) will be held […]

Commissioner Damanaki answers my provocative question on the CFP reform

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Knowing that I am somehow interested in EU fisheries policy, the Debating Europe team recently asked me on Twitter whether I had any question for EU fisheries Commissioner Maria Damanaki. I chose the rather provocative question which of the two major proposals for the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) – the discard ban […]

EU Council transparency: New procedures and 2011 statistics

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Recently, I have remarked changes in the procedures for handling access to documents requests in the EU Council. Especially a new written procedure sparked some protest among EU member states, which led to the need to clarify the difference between the informal and formal procedures in the responsible Working Party on Information (meeting summary, p. […]

An EU expert group to foster innovation and creativity

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Recently, the EU Council Youth Working Party – the working-level group of member states’ representatives on youth issues – has passed (draft) Council Conclusions on fostering the creative and innovative potential of young people. What is “funny” and most typical for EU Council “politics” is that the only concrete decision these so-called conclusions contain is […]