current-affairs

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    Why non-performing loans are still putting the European Banking Union at risk

Why non-performing loans are still putting the European Banking Union at risk

Non-Performing Loan (NPL) ratios in countries like Italy, Portugal and Spain have started to decrease sharply, but as Corrado Macchiarelli, Renato Giacon, Andromachi Georgosouli and Mara Monti write, this has received relatively little media attention in comparison to previous fears over the accumulation of NPLs in the EU. They explain that despite the lack of headlines about NPLs, one […]

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    How the story of Britain and Europe began: Was Brexit inevitable?

How the story of Britain and Europe began: Was Brexit inevitable?

How did the story of Britain and Europe begin? Was Brexit inevitable? In this blog, Lindsay Aqui attempts to answer these and other questions as the UK’s protracted departure from the European Union enters yet another phase.

As we near what may be the end of the UK’s membership of the EU, it seems timely to reflect on how that relationship began. […]

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    Out of the liberal policy morass? How Denmark’s Social Democrats might reshape the country’s approach to immigration

Out of the liberal policy morass? How Denmark’s Social Democrats might reshape the country’s approach to immigration

Ahead of Denmark’s next general election, which must be held by June this year, the country’s Social Democrats have outlined a new and more restrictive approach to immigration. Peter Nedergaard writes that the new plan offers international solutions founded in the roots and ideology of the party, and could offer a model for other social-democratic parties struggling to deal […]

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    UK economy since the Brexit vote: slower GDP growth, lower productivity, and a weaker pound

UK economy since the Brexit vote: slower GDP growth, lower productivity, and a weaker pound

Evidence of the UK’s economic performance since the EU Referendum is clear: GDP growth has slowed down, productivity has suffered, the pound has depreciated and purchasing power has gone down, and investments have declined. In this blog, Josh De Lyon and Swati Dhingra argue that the impact of the Brexit vote on the health of the economy can now be evaluated […]

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    Not all the ‘over 65s’ are in favour of Brexit – Britain’s wartime generation are almost as pro-EU as millennials

Not all the ‘over 65s’ are in favour of Brexit – Britain’s wartime generation are almost as pro-EU as millennials

There is a significant difference in opinion on Brexit between different age groups in the UK, with older citizens generally exhibiting more negative attitudes toward the EU than younger citizens. But as Kieran Devine writes, while ‘over 65s’ are typically treated as a single category in opinion polls, there are substantial generational differences within this group, with those who […]

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    Why more needs to be done to help weaker organisations bid for EU funding

Why more needs to be done to help weaker organisations bid for EU funding

The EU is considered to be the world’s largest public donor and it has claimed to use public funds to promote the participation of organised interests in public policy. Drawing on a new study, Michele Crepaz and Marcel Hanegraaff illustrate that despite claims of balance in how funding is distributed, organisations with larger resources and more experience of making […]

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    Germany will not allow Brexit to compromise EU core principles

Germany will not allow Brexit to compromise EU core principles

The powerful role of German business was brought into the Brexit debate during the referendum campaign by Leave campaigners as they brushed off predictions of hampered trade with the EU in a post-Brexit world. They argued that German carmakers would surely make their interests heard. But as John Ryan argues, this did not happen and Germany will not allow Brexit to […]

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Entrepreneurship 2020: Time for a new settlement?

In the midst of the Eurozone crisis, the European Commission unveiled ‘Entrepreneurship 2020’, a new set of guiding principles designed to re-energise entrepreneurialism across the continent. However, as Joseph Ganderson, Tommaso Giulla and Kayrin Gauci argue, while this action plan had noble intentions, it has struggled to deliver meaningful change in each of its target areas. The time is […]

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How living in an EU member state creates support for the EU

Does living in an EU member state give citizens a more positive view of the EU? Rosalind Shorrocks and Roosmarijn de Geus show how extended exposure to European Union membership positively affects pro-EU attitudes.

A wave of Euroscepticism has swept through the countries of the European Union with Brexit its ultimate manifestation. Nevertheless, in a recent study we find that […]

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    Have the ‘Kaczyński tapes’ had any impact on Polish politics?

Have the ‘Kaczyński tapes’ had any impact on Polish politics?

Earlier this year, recordings emerged of the leader of Poland’s ruling Law and Justice party discussing a lucrative construction project. Aleks Szczerbiak writes that despite the Polish opposition hoping the case might damage the government’s political appeal, Law and Justice retains credibility among its core supporters and the circumstances surrounding the revelations are too complex for them to be […]

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Can the wisdom of the crowd predict a second EU referendum?

If the UK were to hold another EU referendum, would the public now vote to Remain? Davide Morisi writes that while opinion polls have a patchy record of success in forecasting recent elections, the so called ‘wisdom of the crowd’ could potentially provide more accurate predictions. When voters were asked which side they thought would win in 2016, a […]

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    Discretion and agency loss: What factors shape the selection of European Parliament rapporteurs?

Discretion and agency loss: What factors shape the selection of European Parliament rapporteurs?

Party group coordinators in the European Parliament are responsible for selecting ‘rapporteurs’, who have an important role in parliamentary committees. But how do coordinators make these decisions? Presenting findings from a new study, Lukas Obholzer, Steffen Hurka and Michael Kaeding illustrate that coordinators are more likely to select like-minded individuals as rapporteurs rather than MEPs who reflect the views […]

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    Beyond Operation Sophia: What role for the military in migration policy?

Beyond Operation Sophia: What role for the military in migration policy?

As a response to the migration crisis in 2015, the EU established ‘Operation Sophia’, a naval mission intended to disrupt established human smuggling networks in the Mediterranean. The mandate for Operation Sophia is due to expire at the end of this month, yet with divisions among member states, there is no agreement on whether it will be extended. Julia […]

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    Mediterranean ‘tiger cubs’: How local innovation can boost global competitiveness

Mediterranean ‘tiger cubs’: How local innovation can boost global competitiveness

Promoting entrepreneurship is often viewed as a responsibility of national governments, but how can local governance help foster the conditions under which entrepreneurs might thrive? Michael Cottakis highlights the development of local pockets of technological innovation in Portugal and explains what other countries like Greece could potentially learn from the experience as they seek to recover from the financial […]

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    How do Brits think the EU sees them? It depends how old they are

How do Brits think the EU sees them? It depends how old they are

How British people think the EU and Europeans see them depends not just on whether they’re Leavers or Remainers, but on whether they’re young or old, find Javier Sajuria, Tim Bale and Sarah Wolff. Age is a much bigger factor than gender.

Research by the LSE’s Sara Hobolt and her colleagues suggests that Remain and Leave are becoming crucial political […]

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    The quiet before the storm? Despite attempts to return to stable politics, Germany is heading for another tumultuous year

The quiet before the storm? Despite attempts to return to stable politics, Germany is heading for another tumultuous year

Germany’s once stable party system has undergone substantial change in the last few years. Julian Göpffarth writes that while 2019 has so far promised to be less chaotic, upcoming EU and state elections are likely to stir up tensions that politicians have worked hard to overcome.

Looking at German media one might be struck by the absence of the upcoming […]

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    How EU conditionality entrenches state capture in the Western Balkans

How EU conditionality entrenches state capture in the Western Balkans

The EU enlargement process in the Western Balkans has fallen short of reproducing the transformative impact it had in Central and Eastern Europe. Solveig Richter and Natasha Wunsch point to state capture as the core obstacle to deep democratisation in the region and argue that EU conditionality not only fails to overcome detrimental governance patterns, but unintentionally contributes to […]

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Finland: Europe in the shadow of national elections

Finland is due to hold parliamentary elections on 14 April before the European elections are held later in May. Tapio Raunio writes that given Finnish coalition negotiations usually last around 1-2 months after an election, the European elections are likely to be overshadowed by the national vote. This could prove advantageous for some of Finland’s political parties, many of […]

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    A new great game unfolding: Priorities for a new EU strategy on Central Asia

A new great game unfolding: Priorities for a new EU strategy on Central Asia

The EU is expected to approve a new strategy for engaging with countries in Central Asia this year. Ann Sander Nielsen writes that in developing the new strategy, the EU must avoid compromising its founding values under the guise of ‘principled pragmatism’.

During the first part of this year, the European Union will adopt a new strategy for its engagement […]

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    What lies ahead is a Brexeternity of difficult and tetchy negotiations between the UK and the EU

What lies ahead is a Brexeternity of difficult and tetchy negotiations between the UK and the EU

Securing a Brexit withdrawal agreement would only be the first stage in determining the future relationship between the UK and the EU. Denis MacShane argues that the briefest of readings of the Political Declaration attached to the UK-EU deal reveals that an eternity of difficult, tetchy negotiations lies ahead as the UK and EU try and fashion a new modus vivendi. Brexeternity […]

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