Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Current Affairs

#UACES2011 in Cambridge: A look at some interesting EU research

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I must say that I very much enjoyed the UACES conference in Cambridge last week, especially some of the finished and ongoing research I was able to witness. Listening to the presentations, discussions and interventions, I’d say some of the people who were there would make pretty good EU bloggers. Here are some of the […]

Interview: Ben Rosamond and the importance of IPE in European Studies

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Ben Rosamond (Copenhaguen University) and Miguel Otero-Iglesias (Oxford Brookes University) discuss the current and future importance of non-mainstream IPE approaches in understanding the European Union and its role in the new world order after the Global Financial Crisis.

Leonhard den Hertog discusses Frontex and the rise in immigration after the Arab Spring

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In the first part of this short interview, Leonhard den Hertog, University of Cologne, discusses the difficulties in assessing the accountability of the EU Borders Agency (Frontex). The second part of this interview looks at whether the scale of migration to Italy following the Arab Spring has been overstated.

Tell us about your research? Shelly Gottfried speaks to Miguel Otero-Iglesias

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Now in her third year at City University, Shelly Gottfried discusses the challenges of undertaking her PhD with Miguel Otero-Iglesias, Oxford Brookes University. She also offers her views on the immediate problems facing the EU in light of the Arab Spring.

Noda Yoshihiko as a New PM: Unnecessary Change in Current Japan

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Noda Yoshihiko, Finance Minister under Kan Naoto administration, was chosen as a sixth Prime Minister of Japan in the last five years. Anxiety over Kan’s future as a Prime Minister was already observed after the 3/11 earthquake indeed. Because of his “poor performance” in dealing with the earthquake aftermath, three opposition parties had submitted a […]

Access to EU Commission documents: 2010 statistics and 2011 academic realities [Updated]

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Yesterday, the EU Commission published its report on the application of the EU access to documents regulation in 2010 (PDF). The report gives some interesting figures, but one should see them in relation to reality, which shall be done below. A) The report’s figures in a quick and selective summary: In 2010, there were 6127 […]

Tobacco and a public consultation: NGOs versus NGOs

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England Expects has written a blog post titled “Citizens versus NGOs“, quoting the summary of reponses of government agencies, NGOs and individual contributions from the recently published “Report on the public consultation on the possible revision of the Tobacco Products Directive (2001/37/EC)“. With the majority of individual contributions (~82,000 in total) being against more restrictive measures against […]

Political culture in Norway: “More democracy and openness” as a reaction to violence

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Yesterday, a double act of extreme violence has hit Norway and speculations on who did this have started as it is usual in the news media cycle. Besides the explosion in the governmental district in central Oslo, for me the more shocking act – if one can say this –  is the shooting of young […]

The search for a coherent strategic diplomacy in EU foreign policy

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What is the most important lesson that the European External Action Service should take from the ‘Arab Spring’ ? In an interview by Cristian Nitoiu from Loughborough University, Professor Michael Smith evaluates the development of the External Actions and the goal of creating a coherent strategic diplomacy within the European Union’s foreign policy.

Google+ and 155 years of social network analysis

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In 1856, the Norwegian ethnologist Eilert Sundt described the rural social structures of Norwegian peasants (and their farms) called “bedelags” (Google translates this as “prayer teams”). These “bedelags” became visible at certain social events (like funerals) when people from different farms came together. Sundt noted that, if visualised, the rural social network would look like a […]

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