Ideas on Europe

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Author Archives: Christopher Huggins

EU Open Days 2013

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For the second year running I attended the EU Open Days in Brussels. This event, organised by the European Commission and the Committee of the Regions, and now in its tenth year, brings together local and regional actors from across Europe, along with representatives from the European Commission and Committee of the Regions. Over 6,000 […]

The LEPs may be able to set priorities for EU funding, but the government’s still in control

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Today I attended the Southern England Local Partners annual European Congress in Poole. This was an important event for the delegates in the room, mostly representatives of local government and the new Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs). The highlight of the programme for many was the keynote speech, a presentation from the UK government on how the range of […]

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Researching local involvement in Europe: a roundup from UACES 2013

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The 2013 UACES annual conference has just come to a close. This year there were five panels focusing on the role of local and regional actors. This is compared to only one or two in previous years. Not only is this evidence of increasing academic interest in the field, but also reflects the growing prevalence […]

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Bilateral links in the Channel/Manche area

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Since the late 1980s local and regional authorities in southern England and northern France have co-operated on a bilateral basis. These links differed from the traditional post-war twinning links between cities, towns and other smaller communities. Rather than a narrow focus on civic or cultural exchange each council entered into a co-operation agreement or accord, […]

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Is EU regional policy becoming more centralised?

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One of the panels at the Council for European Studies conference in Amsterdam a couple of weeks ago focused on local and regional authority engagement with EU cohesion policy, and what the impact of the current financial crisis  and austerity has been.   It was noted that the European Commission often prides itself on the […]

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Wales and the EU

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The Wales, the United Kingdom and Europe: Europeanising Devolution conference (Cardiff, 24 May 2013) presented a paradox for Wales’s engagement with the EU; while Europe is extremely important for Wales engagement seems to be lacking. On the one hand it was recognised that the EU has the potential to offer Wales several benefits. On top […]

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