Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: The EU

EU Member State Building in the Western Balkans

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In this article, Soeren Keil looks at the EU’s more active role in the process of state (and nation) building in the countries of the former Yugoslavia. He argues that the EU’s technical approach to highly political issues has led to misconceptions between the EU and elites in these countries, and has in turn alienated citizens. He lastly offers some ideas as to how the EU might change its approach to enlargement to meet these challenges.

Election time: How to improve debates on Europe

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It’s just five months until the next European Parliament elections. As with every European Election, both eurosceptics and europhiles face a key difficulty: getting people to vote. Both sides will stress how much, for better or for worse, Brussels matters in the life of European citizens. Over the coming months, we’re likely to hear politicians […]

Where is Horizon 2020 leading us?

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As the year 2014 gets underway, the Europe of Knowledge also begins a new phase with the launch of Horizon 2020. Now that the budget wrangling is over and the calls for the first grant proposals have been published, we will finally begin to discover what Horizon 2020 does to reshape the research environment in […]

Daily Mail: Trick or Truth? You Decide

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The Daily Mail last night refused to apologise for their story that claimed buses and planes from Romania and Bulgaria to the UK were full up and sold out, or to agree that their story was inaccurate. The world’s most popular online newspaper had reported that many Romanians and Bulgarians were coming to the UK […]

What does a 6.5% public surplus mean from the perspective of the ICESCR?

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Earlier this month, the Greek Government assumed the Presidency of the Council of the EU for this semester. In an attempt to show off the austerity efforts made by his Government, the Deputy Prime Minister, Evangelos Venizelos, said in a recent interview with Euronews: Over the past three and a half years, Greece has made […]

Buses, planes, Bulgarians, Romanians & The Mail

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On 31 December 2013 the UK’s Daily Mail published a story claiming that buses and planes to the UK from Bulgaria and Romania were sold-out, fully-booked, and single plane tickets were selling for up to £3,000 each. The story carried the bold headline: Sold out! Flights and buses full as Romanians and Bulgarians head for […]

Europe of Knowledge 2014: High Expectations and Complex Realities

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  The New Year of 2014 in European research policy comes with a couple of high profile events: launch of Horizon 2020 – one of the largest research funding programmes worldwide and envisaged completion of the European Research Area – so far the most comprehensive initiative in transnational knowledge governance. These major events involve a […]

What to expect from Germany’s new government for energy and climate policy in the EU?

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Germany’s new government under Angela Merkel (her third term) was sworn in on 17 December 2013. While some faces will be familiar, much has changed as Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) entered a ‘grand coalition’ with the Social Democrats (SPD) after voters ousted her last coalition partner, the Free Democratic Party (FDP), from parliament. But what […]

UK diary Reflections: Is UK no longer ‘exciting’ for Eastern Europeans?

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This year was for me the second ever Christmas I spent in London (the other one was coincidentally 5 years ago) and experienced it UK-style from Queen’s TV speech (focused this year on ‘reflections’) to Fireworks (as expensive as only London is) instead of heading back home. Indeed, I am an immigrant. Currently the most undesirable type descending […]

Romania and Bulgaria: Flights of fancy

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Some of the British media are at war against the European Union – and it’s often said that the first casualty of war is the truth. Yesterday on New Year’s eve, the Daily Mail reported: ‘Sold Out! Flights and buses full as Romanians and Bulgarians head for the UK’ Asserted the Daily Mail: ‘Almost all […]

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