Open call for applications 5-day Brussels seminar on EU Asylum and Migration Policies for Master students

In the framework of the PONT project TEPSA (Trans European Policy Studies Association) is organising a ‘Working Europe’ Seminar on EU Asylum and Migration policies, which will take place in Brussels on 4-8 April 2016.

Amid EuPONT_LOGOrope’s worst refugee crisis since the Second World War, 20 students will take part in a seminar where EU practitioners, researchers and other relevant stakeholders will discuss recent developments in EU asylum and migration law and policy. The seminar will offer participants insights into the political dynamics shaping EU asylum and migration policies, and into the main challenges that have to be addressed. The division of competencies and responsibilities between the EU and its Member States will also be discussed.

Participants in the seminar will also visit policy departments of several EU institutions and agencies, Brussels-based thinks tanks and NGOs dealing with refugee issues. At the end of the seminar, a simulation game on EU Council negotiations will be organised in order to enable participants to apply the knowledge acquired during the seminar.

The seminar is coordinated by the Prof Dr Jaap W. de Zwaan, Emeritus Professor of European Union Law at Erasmus University Rotterdam and Lector European Integration at the Hague University of Applied Sciences.

Participants will receive a certificate of attendance after a successful completion of the Working Europe Seminar.

Seminar venue: Fondation Universitaire, Rue d’Egmont 11, Brussels and working visits in Brussels.

Participation fee: EUR 100.

Travel reimbursement: TEPSA reimburses travel costs up to EUR 250. All other expenses, like accommodation, are to be covered by other sources or by the participants themselves.

The application phase is now closed. We are currently contacting all the candidates in order to inform them about the status of their applications.

More information can be found here: PONT Working Europe Seminar Call for Applications

Please find here the Final Agenda of the PONT seminar.


IIEA’s seminar on “Protecting Personal Data in the Digital Age”, 17 May 2013, Dublin

IIEA Logo_largeOn 17 May 2013, the  Institute of International and European Affairs (IIEA) hosted a high-level seminar on data protection. Individuals and businesses supply huge quantities of information on a daily basis, from telephone numbers to employment histories to bank account details. The spread of social networks and online ordering, as well as more widespread use of mobile devices, poses new challenges for the protection of personal data and the fight against cyber-crime. Marne Levine, Facebook’s Global Vice-President for Public Policy, and Billy Hawkes, Ireland’s Data Protection Commissioner, discussed these vital issues in the context of upcoming EU legislative reforms on data protection.

This event was organised with the support of McCann FitzGerald, and took place at their Dublin headquarters.

Consult all IIEA’s events:

Forthcoming 2013 seminars at Sciences Po, Centre d’études européennes


Migrations and Multiculturalism, 9 January 2013. Opening session: “Immigration and multiculturalism: a historical perspective of the France-US crossroads” with Nancy Foner (City University of New York), Paul-André Rosental (Sciences Po, CEE). Catherine Goussef (EHESS, CERCEC, CNRS) and Nancy Green (EHESS, CRH).

The mass migration since 1950 has profoundly transformed demographic, social, political and economic structures in numerous societies in the world, and specifically European societies. The arrival of long-stay immigrants, the increase of the prominent “second generations”, the importance of multiculturalism and supposed differing values and the emergence of ethnic or racial minorities as they redefine processes, all look to models of integration. These evolutions question the past sense of inheritance with the dislocation of multinational empires, of colonisation-decolonisation or the slave trade. These manifestations of internal diversity come into play as the nation-states entre into a new sequence of rebuilding as well as the fear of dilution. They question the very transformation dynamics of the state.

The political management of such diversity follows various past regimens according to historical configurations of societies and their respective policies. But if these national idiosyncrasies remain strong, the circulation of models, the role of homogenisation at the supra-national level, the transpositions of one society’s experiences to another drive the whole towards a form of unification (of course with limits) of an action repertoire or reference, mirroring the increasingly comparative research. The “European” dimension cannot be neglected. Adjustments will not be without intense debate on the future of multicultural societies, as well as future political arenas, such as social sciences. And the connection between politics and policy merits an examination, as a scholarly debate by politicians. These political processes have had an effect on the basic revision of theory and concepts dedicated to the studies of migration, integration, and discrimination. More information about the seminar here.

Modèles nationaux de croissance et protection sociale, 31 January and 1st February 2013, Sciences po, CEE and LIEPP, CEPREMAP.

While many studies have shown increased contribution of social protection to the post-war boom, the question of its contribution to the economy has been relatively neglected in recent times. When emphasis is not put on its worst attributes for the role it plays in social protection it is then seen for its better role as a “shock absorber.” The objective of this project is to examine the role of social protection in national growth strategies developed during the last decade in developed or emerging countries, especially in Germany and France. We must consider (or reconsider) the relationship between the functionality of the economy, whose structures are in turmoil, and current or renewed social protection mechanisms. Relationships and complementarities of social protection with other areas of the economy depend on the type of economic organization. Five basic dimensions are likely to be considered. 1. The role of finance, the financing of the global economy and the financing of social protection; 2. The relationship between the labour market and social protection; 3. The system of skills training; 4. Distribution inequality; 5. The area of social protection itself as a sector of economic activity and a potential source of growth and employment. For more information click here.

L’ethnographie du politique et des politiques, une perspective pragmatique, 22 January 2013, Sciences Po, CEE, Paris with Daniel Céfai, (EHESS, CEMS). Discussion: Thomas Aguilera (Sciences Po, CEE) and Pierre Lascoumes (Sciences Po, CEE, CNRS). For more information click here.

War Deaths: Are Incumbents Punished for Costly Policies?, 19 February 2013, Sciences Po, CEE, Paris with Daniel Rubenson (Ryerson University, Researcher visiting Sciences Po, CEE). Discussion: Bastien Irondelle (Sciences Po, CERI), Lucas Leemann (Sciences Po, CEE and Columbia University in the city of New York). For more information click here.

A political history of the future, 19 March 2013, Sciences Po, CEE, with Jenny Andersson (Sciences Po, CEE, CNRS). Discussion: Charlotte Halpern (Sciences Po, CEE), Antoine Mandret (Sciences Po, CEE). For more information click here.

Les régions, les inégalités et les politiques publiques. Contribution à une sociologie comparée de l’Etat, 16 April 2013, Sciences Po, CEE, with Claire Dupuy (Université catholique de Louvain-La-Neuve, ISPOLE and Associate to Sciences Po, CEE). Discussion: Patrick Le Lidec (Sciences Po, CEE, CNRS), Francesca Artioli (Sciences Po, CEE). For more information click here.

Analyse des politiques de santé publique, 4 May 2013, Sciences Po, CEE, with Patrick Castel and Henri Bergeron (Sciences Po, CSO). Discussion: Louise Lartigot-Hervier (Sciences Po, CERI) and Cornelia Woll (Sciences Po, CERI, MaxPo and LIEPP). For more information click here.

2012 seminars at the Institute for European Politics (IEP), Berlin, September – December

IEP_Bildschirm_2000x400pxLunch debate on “Saving the Euro: Financial possibilities and limits – An insight to the view of the CDU/CSU Parliamentary Group”, 28 September 2012, Berlin

On the 28th of September the IEP organized a lunch debate with budget policy spokesman Norbert Barthle of the CDU/CSU Parliamentary Group in the Hotel Maritim proArte in Berlin. The topic of the debate was “Saving the Euro: Financial possibilities and limits – An insight to the view of the CDU/CSU Parliamentary Group.” First, Norbert Barthle explained the difficult moments of the crisis within the Euro-Zone and underlined the necessity to reduce public debt, to manage the banking crisis and to dissolve the close linkage between the fate of large bank and those of states. Thereafter, he elaborated on general crisis management measures and their success.

Crucial instruments to combat the debt crisis were the Fiscal Pact with its included debt brake, the Euro-Plus Pact, the European Semester, the “Six-Pack”, which introduced a tightening of the Stability and Growth Pact and especially the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), which shall serve as a permanent crisis management measure. Moreover, Barthle appreciated the latest judgment of the Federal Constitutional Court on the German liability risk of 190 Billion Euros within the ESM and the subsequent approval of the ESM by the Bundestag. Furthermore, the latest report by the Troika for Portugal and the current situation in Spain were discussed. With regard to a European Banking Union, Barthle stressed the importance of an independent European Central Bank. Monetary policy and the supervision of banks had to be strictly separated. He was of the opinion that it would be sufficient and according to the principle of subsidiarity to establish a European Banking Supervision only for system-relevant banks. In his final words, Norbert Barthle stressed his faith in the European Central Bank with regard to its decision to buy unlimited bonds from countries affected by the Euro crisis.

IEP Expert Workshop on “The EU as a Foreign Policy Actor – Ambitions, Interests and Challenges in Year Three of the Lisbon Treaty and beyond”, 18/19 October 2012, Berlin

On 18th and 19th October 2012, around 55 experts from academia as well as practitioners and policy makers met at the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation in Berlin to discuss the European Union’s development as a foreign policy actor since the coming into effect of the Lisbon Treaty. The conference was organized by the Institute for European Politics (IEP) in cooperation with the Scientific Directorate and the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation, with the support of the Erasmus Academic Network LISBOAN and the Fritz-Thyssen-Foundation. During the two-day workshop the experts from all over Europe as well as from overseas debated developments in the EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy and assessed current challenges critically. The four panel discussions and two keynote speeches focused on topics such as the presence or absence of the EU in world affairs, achievements and shortcomings of the new CFSP system in operation, the external dimensions of CFSP or strategic interests, partners and rivals of the EU.

In the light of current political developments, key issues that came up over and over again during the discussions were the challenges imposed on the EU by the debt crisis and diverging national interests internally and changes in international affairs like the Arab Spring or the emergence of new powerful actors externally. CFSP was further challenged by diverging national interests of Member States which turned the EU more and more into an integration project of multiple speeds. In this context, especially the reluctant stance of the UK was critically discussed. The EU had to work urgently on its coherence in foreign policy matters to avoid a degeneration into insignificance in world politics. Furthermore, the experts assessed the EU’s weak performance in CSDP. The workshop helped to identify strengths, assets and positive achievements since the coming into effect of the Lisbon treaty as well as the many deficits in CFSP that had to be tackled in the near future.

IEP Lunch Debate on “How much does Europe cost – what is it worth?”, 22 October 2012, Berlin

At the IEP lunch debate on 22 October 2012, Steffen Kampeter, Member of the German Parliament (Bundestag) and Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Finance, spoke on the topic “How much does Europe cost – what is it worth?”. Kampeter’s main argument was that it was worrying that within the scope of the current Euro Crisis Europe’s perception was reduced to the costs of stabilizing the Eurozone, while at the same time the EU as a whole and its member states were constantly losing relevance in public opinion. It would be crucial not to forget the tremendous value of the EU which is based on peace and freedom.

In the course of the debate, Kampeter elaborated on several assumptions such as the exaggeration of costs connected to saving the Euro especially in Germany, even though Germany profited the most from the EU and the Euro. While the costs of Europe were exaggerated, Europe’s economic value was underestimated. Moreover, Kampeter stressed that the Eurozone currently faced a governance crisis due to the lack of a coordinated European financial policy for more than ten years. Governance reforms that were about to be launched had to aim at investors and citizens regaining trust in the operativeness of Europe. But Kampeter also acknowledged that the measures and reforms that had already been implemented in the periphery states gradually showed effect. Concluding, he emphasized that the current crisis could not simply be solved by short-term measures, but required a deeper integration towards a Union capable of acting. In this regard the creation of a banking union was a key measure. In the long term, however, the office of a Financial Commissioner with clear jurisdiction had to be created. In addition, Kampeter argued in favor of a direct election of the President of the Commission as well as increased monitoring rights for the European Parliament as a second chamber next to the European Council.

Lunch Debate on “The Future of the European Union”, 24 October 2012, Berlin

At the IEP lunch debate on 24th October 2012 at the Permanent Representation of Saarland in Berlin, Michael Georg Link, Minister of State at the Federal Foreign Office and Member of Parliament, gave a speech on “The Future of the European Union”, which outlined possible reforms to further deepen the European integration process. According to Link, the debate about the future of the EU should evolve in all 27 Member States including various national interests in order to find adequate solutions. This debate should also include the United Kingdom and therefore case-related opt-outs instead of drop-outs had to be accepted if necessary. Moreover, the debate on the future of the EU should not exclusively be hold at EU summits, but also in the European public sphere.

In the following, Link elaborated on reform proposals as for example to strengthen the role of the European Parliament by a right for initiative, to directly elect the President of the European Commission and to structure of the Council as a second chamber of Parliament. The whole institutional system of the EU had to be structured more simply, efficiently and democratically. Regarding CFSP, the EU had not come up to its full potential yet. A good example for a the strong standing of the EU in international affairs was the WTO, where the Union, represented by the European Commission, acted as an autonomous member and advocated successfully the common interests of all Member States. A similar presence in the field of foreign policy would be desirable. Link also referred a number of reform proposals brought forward by the Future of Europe Group, e.g. the empowerment of the High Representative and the adaptation of majority voting in CFSP. Finally, Link argued to fully implement the Lisbon reforms, which had not happened yet.

Lunch Debates on “The role of national parliamentary decision in the current process of European Integration”, 06 November 2012, Berlin

At the IEP lunch debate on 6th November 2012, Gunther Krichbaum, chairmen of the Committee on European Union Affairs in the German Bundestag, discussed the role of parliamentary decisions in the current process of European Integration. In his speech, Krichbaum emphasized the importance of cooperation between national parliaments and the EU institutions as well as the necessity to include national parliaments in the process of further European integration. Especially in the light of the current process of parliamentarisation of European politics in most Member States, the role of MPs as a link between the work of governments on European Politics and the citizen had to be considered. Taking into account the current challenges the EU was facing, Krichbaum argued for further integration, a better communication of the EU’s value and a strengthening of the EU as an actor in a globalised world. National parliaments could play a crucial role in this development. However, the role of the European Parliament had to be strengthened, too. Moreover, it was crucial that parliaments had their share in decisions concerning amendments of the EU treaties as for example via the Convention method. In his final remarks, Krichbaum positioned himself against the idea of a “Core-European Union” led by the members of the Euro-group, since this would have an excluding and disintegrating effect for the whole Union.

22nd Annual Conference of the German-Hungarian Panel and the 2nd conference of the Young German-Hungarian Panel.

On the 8th and 9th of November 2012, the 22nd annual conference of the German-Hungarian Panel took place at the Lower Saxony State Chancellery in Berlin. As a part of the conference, the Young German-Hungarian Panel met for the second time and about forty interested students and professionals participated. The Institut für Europäische Politik organized the annual Conference in collaboration with the German-Hungarian Chamber of Industry and Commerce (DUIHK).

In the panel discussions and working groups, the transformation of the European identity, the role of Germany and Hungary in Central Europe as well as the economic and monetary policy were debated. Thereby, the current monetary and debt crisis in Europe and the role of the European Union within it were at the centre of the discussions. In addition, the Young German-Hungarian Forum focused on subjects such as citizens in Europe, Common Foreign and Security Policy, Enlargement Policy, and Energy and Climate Policy.

At the end of the conference, both foreign ministers, Dr. Guido Westerwelle and Dr. János Martonyi, addressed the participants. They emphasized that not only the historical bonds between Germany and Hungary are important that existed because of the overcoming of the iron curtain, but also a strong collaboration in order to overcome the current challenges.

More information available here.

How to strengthen the EU as a global player – Italy and Germany in the driver’s seat?

The shared interests, challenges and opportunities of Italy and Germany in strengthening the EU’s profile on the international stage were the topics of this joint expert seminar in Rome on 3/4 December 2012. The expert seminar was part of a tradition of seminars organised by the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) in Rome and the Institut für Europäische Politik (IEP) in Berlin. The meetings serve as a forum for dialogue between practitioners and academics as well as a trigger for discussion and a platform for new ideas to support the development of the EU towards a strong foreign policy actor.

The experts discussed the challenges that EU’s foreign policy is facing in- and outside Europe. Especially the effects of the continuing economic and fiscal crisis, the UK’s unpredictable future in the EU as well as the strategic reorientation of the US were part of the debate. However, the upcoming years provide several opportunities to foster the EU’s profile with the review of the EEAS, the debate on common priorities and defence capabilities, as well as the December 2013 European Council on defence. These separate debates have to be addressed by the two countries jointly and comprehensively for the best impact. In the long run, the upcoming mandates for Commission President and HR/VP after the 2014 European Parliament election, as well as possible treaty changes have to be considered in the planning in the two capitals.

The seminar came in so far to a hopeful conclusion, as it identified common perceptions and interests of Italy and Germany in the area of foreign policy that could provide the basis for a deepening of the EU as a foreign policy actor. A deepening of EU’s integration as a necessary pre-condition for a strong EU profile in international affairs was one of the take-away messages of the meeting. However, as for example, the ‘centrifugal powers’ of the Eurocrisis show, a deepening of the EU might also mean its shrinking. The Europe’s integration project is thus facing new dilemmas that need to be addressed as well as communicated to the public.

The full report on the seminar can be found here.

How to strengthen the EU as a global player – Italy and Germany in the driver’s seat? Experts’ seminar by IAI, Rome & IEP, Berlin, 3/4 December 2012, Rome


Logo IAIThe shared interests, challenges and opportunities of Italy and Germany in strengthening the EU’s profile on the international stage were the topics of this joint expert seminar in Rome. The expert seminar was part of a tradition of seminars organised by the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) in Rome and the Institut für Europäische Politik (IEP) in Berlin. The meetings serve as a forum for dialogue between practitioners and academics as well as a trigger for discussion and a platform for new ideas to support the development of the EU towards a strong foreign policy actor.

As recognized by the participants, this seminar took place in a challengiLogo IPEng context for EU foreign policy. They identified a gap between the expectations related to the legal words of the Lisbon treaty, and the real world implementation of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). While the European External Action Service (EEAS) has improved its game over the recent months, the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) did not progress in the same speed as it did in the last decade. All these developments took place against the backdrop of the economic and fiscal crisis that dominates the agenda of the decision-makers and sudden, far-ranging developments in Europe’s neighbourhood.

Hence, it was even more important to ask what common contributions Italy and Germany can make to strengthen the EU’s foreign policy profile. Together with which actors can the two countries provide leadership in the development of a stronger foreign policy? What role can the common institutions play and how can they be reformed to work more effectively? Why did the development of CSDP fall behind its expectations and where are the drivers and obstacles for this policy located in the 27 capitals and in Brussels? How can the double-hatted High Representative (HR/VP) contribute to a new momentum in EU foreign policy? These questions provided a foundation for a rich discussion between the participants, which is covered in this report.

See seminar’s Report for more information.