Paolo Gentiloni took over from Matteo Renzi as Italian Prime Minister in December, but the country’s politics remain volatile amid infighting within Renzi’s Democratic Party and calls from the Five Star Movement for a referendum on Italy leaving the euro. Miguel Otero-Iglesias highlights the widespread anger some voters feel toward the EU and Germany, but suggests that even if Grillo […]
The Greek referendum highlighted an accountability conundrum: if a Grexit would have significant consequences for the future of the Eurozone, who should be consulted? Mark Dawson writes that this dilemma points at a wider problem within the EU’s accountability structures, which are riddled with paradoxes. He argues that, at least in the economic field, no legitimate structure for ensuring […]
Reflecting on the recent crisis in Cyprus, Vassilis Paipais and Eirini Karamouzi write that the imbroglio over the county’s banks shows both the difficulties currently faced by the eurozone and the power of Germany in Europe. They argue that the crisis has also brought to the surface real antagonisms over wealth inequalities in the eurozone, and warn that the increasing polarization between […]
Brussels blog round-up for 23- 29 March: Cyprus crisis continues, creative accounting in Spain, and is Germany Europe’s bully?
Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU centre and the crisis This week saw Cyprus’ banking crisis rumble on. On Saturday, Some of it was true… looked over the previous week’s developments, commenting of the Cyprus bail-in that, ‘the operation was a success, but a shame the patient died’. Open Europe ponders whether or not Cyprus […]
Spyros Economides argues that the eurocrisis has resulted in a more ‘introverted’ Europe. Existential fears about the future of the EU have increased member states’ divisions over foreign policy issues, and there is a perpetual ‘tug-of-war’ between EU states with global and regional ambitions. He writes that the EU has a very long way to go to build a European […]
European health systems are changing in response to the financial crisis but face barriers to implementing necessary reforms.
The financial crisis has affected almost every aspect of European governments’ ability to maintain public services, and healthcare has been no exception. Philipa Mladovsky and Sarah Thomson look at how health systems have responded to the financial crisis and find that there is substantial variation across Europe. Some countries were better prepared than others to cope with a fiscal shock, […]
The appointments of Lucas Papademos in Greece and Mario Monti in Italy in 2011 are examples of leadership changes intended to bring more competent figures into government. But why do governments sometimes appoint economic policymakers with economics training, whilst others do not? Using new research, Mark Hallerberg and Joachim Wehner suggest that levels of economics education among finance ministers are […]
Brussels blog round-up for 19 – 25 January: War in Mali, Cameron’s Europe speech, and has the ECB done enough to save the euro?
Chris Gilson and Stuart A Brown take a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU centre Lost in EUrope says that it is telling that the anniversary celebrations for the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Elysée Treaty between France and Germany are being held in Berlin, and not Paris. Coulisses de Bruxelles says that France and Germany’s […]
The desire to blame Greece for the eurocrisis ensures that the Greek people pay the price, while the elites responsible get away free.
In the first of two articles on the Greek crisis as a ‘trope’, Daniel M. Knight writes that Greece now finds itself subject to a narrative of blame from the countries of the European north, with the Greek people portrayed as the cause of the eurozone crisis, rather than as victims. He argues that this narrative, alongside new waves of […]
In the face of populist nationalism, European institutions must do more online to increase awareness of the common dimensions of the eurocrisis.
Across Europe, many politicians are increasingly using a populist, anti-European rhetoric to gain support, at the same time that European institutions are pushing to establish a sense of European community. By combining content analysis of the European Parliament and Commission’s online communications with staff interviews, Johannes Hillje finds that only a very small percentage of communications relate to the eurozone […]
Brussels blog round-up for 15 – 21 December: Cyprus close to insolvency, Cameron hints at ‘Brixit’ and Depardieu departs to Belgium over tax.
Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU Centre Coulisses des Bruxelles looks at the failure of the summit last week to reach agreement on European integration, saying that the roadmap towards a federal Europe has become a post-it. Karpfenteich at Blogactiv.eu is similarly pessimistic about the timetable for further integration, (and metaphorical) saying that “Europeans […]
Uncertainty and insecurity have pushed Greek society to its limits, and there is no improvement in sight.
The eurozone crisis has had a profound effect on Greek society. Drawing on in-depth interviews with a cross-section of Greek citizens, Athanasia Chalari finds that the combination of harsh austerity measures and a dysfunctional state has created a social reality in Greece that is characterised by anger, disappointment, and an extreme pessimism about the future. The last three years have […]
Brussels blog round up for 24 – 30 November: A bailout in everything but name for Greece, Europe splits on Palestine and no EU job for Tony Blair.
Chris Gilson and Stuart A Brown take a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU centre After the failure of the summit to decide the EU’s budget for the next seven years last week, Reuniting Europe at Blogactiv.eu reports that EU leaders had been very close to a deal. Coulisses de Bruxelles then looks ahead to the next expected budget summit […]
Germany has prescribed austerity and restraint for Europe, while at the same time undertaking extensive fiscal stimulus packages at home.
The eurozone crisis is one of the most significant challenges EU policymakers have yet faced. Waltraud Schelkle examines Germany’s reaction to the crisis, finding that while Germany proposed economic self-restraint in 2008, it also embarked on a policy of domestic fiscal stimulus to the welfare system and car industry that amounted to 3 per cent of GDP. She argues that […]
Suffering from the eurocrisis and enlargement fatigue, the EU’s influence on Serbia and Kosovo is on the wane.
In recent years, the EU has had a great deal of influence on the Balkans, particularly through its close involvement in Kosovo. However, as Philip Cunliffe notes, the EU is now suffering from the effects of the economic crisis and has little appetite for enlargement. The EU’s declining power in the region, and the removal of any incentives for progress […]
Brussels blog round up for 10– 16 November: More delays for Greece’s bailout, strikes across Europe, and will France be the next victim of austerity politics?
Chris Gilson and Stuart A Brown take a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU centre Lost in EUrope covers the continuing row over the EU budget, with the Erasmus education programme now under threat of running out of money. On Wednesday, the Greens’ budgetary spokesperson Helga Trüpel reports that the negotiations over the budget have failed. Meanwhile, Nucleus at Blogactiv.eu […]
The eurozone crisis has increased demand for cheap labour across Europe. However, the return of EU internal migration controls is unlikely.
Rather than reducing labour migration flows within the European Union, the economic crisis seems to have amplified them. Alexandre Afonso argues that the return of internal migration controls within the EU is unlikely, and that domestic battles about the regulation of migrant employment may give rise to surprising alliances. Many had expected that the economic crisis would reduce labour migration […]
Proposals for a European Banking Union must be redesigned to provide a more accountable and effective institutional framework.
The EU’s proposed banking union is seen by many as the first step towards resolving the eurocrisis, and under current proposals, by 2014 the European Central Bank (ECB) will be responsible for supervising over 6,000 banks in Europe. Kern Alexander has serious concerns about the accountability and capacity of the ECB in this potential role, and argues that its primary […]
Five minutes with Thomas Mayer: “People will resist government from Brussels because it lacks democratic legitimacy”
Originally envisioned as part of Europe’s path towards greater political union, the euro as a project has stalled, with the eurozone now mired in high debt levels and austerity. In an interview with EUROPP editor Chris Gilson, and following an LSE lecture to promote his new book, Thomas Mayer explains that the euro is ‘Europe’s unfinished currency’ and how, in […]
Brussels blog round up for 3 – 9 November: UK pushes for EU budget cut, nearly 5 million unemployed in Spain, and will Obama bring EU & US closer together?
Chris Gilson and Stuart A Brown take a look at the week in Brussels blogging. The EU centre In the run up to this month’s EU budget summit, Peter Wilding at Blogactiv.eu discusses the different approaches of Germany and the UK; Germany wants it frozen, the UK wants a cut. He writes that the two countries are natural allies, with very small […]