Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Politics & Public Policy

How do eurosceptics position themselves: winning the argument or fighting the system?

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The past week has been something of a trip to the past for me. For many years, watching eurosceptics and anti-EU groups was characterised by endless cries that they were fighting ‘the system’, outcasts who had seen the truth and railed against almost impossible odds. That idea of righteousness that underpins such a worldview is one that I […]

The anonymous eurosceptics

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Anonymous eurosceptics seem to be everywhere, posting en masse in the readers columns of our national newspapers. And whenever I post a pro-EU comment – always under my real name – they’re there at the ready, trying hard to discredit me and calling me ‘dishonest’. Of course, they mostly never seem brave enough to post […]

Connecting Europe – TEN-T rail projects fiction or real?

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The Commission has recently revised the Trans-European Network for Transport (TEN-T). Similar to previous TEN-T revisions, the new TEN-T priority projects focus on investment in new cross-border rail infrastructure aiming to connect Europe and alleviate road congestions. Interestingly the new TEN-T map emphasises the increased east-west trade – thus recognising the eastward enlargement. The first […]

NSA surveillance confirms the realist paradigm, and I am not happy about that

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Only a few days ago I briefly presented the research of my life, which I have just started and deals with the influence that human rights make on foreign policy making in Europe. In particular, at the moment I am reading and thinking about why countries choose to embrace and foster certain human rights norms […]

Global University Rankings: Challenges for European Higher Education

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What effects global university rankings have in diverse national, disciplinary and institutional contexts? Why do they attract so much attention? What do they tell about global power shift and changing transnational policy discourse on higher education? Do rankings facilitate stratification and commodification of higher education? Today a new book Global University Rankings: Challenges for European […]

When is now for eurosceptics?

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At the end of last week, the Commission announced it was supporting the opening of accession negotiations with Albania, a decision that the December European Council will be asked to approve. This comes on the back of a 4 year process since Albania lodged its application, including a series of very stringent and involved demands by […]

The dangers of obfuscation on ‘Europe’

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Yesterday saw the UK’s Supreme Court hand down its ruling on R v. Secretary of State for Justice and McGeoch v. Lord President of the Council. These cases related to two prisoners on life sentences for murder challenging the denial of their right to vote.  Unlike the Hirst case of 2005, which first established that the UK’s blanket ban on prisoner voting […]

The role of Human Rights in foreign policy making in Europe: 4 questions and 2 observations

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This post was first published in RIGHTS IN CONTEXT on the 2013 Blog Action Day (16 October). This blog post is a collection of open questions rather than the statement of an opinion. I hereby want to share with you the 4 questions and 2 observations that are inspiring the doctoral project that I have […]

True or false? 600,000 jobless EU migrants in UK

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‘An EU study has found 600,000 unemployed migrants are living in Britain’ – The Sunday Telegraph claimed yesterday.  True or false? The story was immediately described by the European Commission as,   ‘a gross and totally irresponsible misrepresentation of the facts’. The Commission pointed out that the 600,000 figure refers to non-active migrants, which as well as […]

The Bologna Process model for world regions: Lessons from the Europe of Knowledge

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The Bologna Process, inspired by the development of the Europe of Knowledge, has been an example for world regions[i]. The policy implementation experiences from the Bologna Process have been simulated by world regions that value higher education cooperation across countries. Across regions the degree of integration in higher education varies along the policy process from […]

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