After the difficulties we encountered in 2014, let us share our positive assessment about the future of TEPSA. In the past months TEPSA was able – because of the help of the whole network – to continue its well established work including the Pre-Presidential Conferences in Riga 2014, Luxembourg 2015 and The Hague 2015. Our special thanks go to the TEPSA member institutes in Riga (Latvian Institute of International Affairs), Luxembourg (Centre d’Etudes et de Recherches Européennes Robert Schuman) and The Hague (Clingendael) for the excellent organisation and cooperation.
Three renowned organisations applied for membership, and after a careful scrutiny by the TEPSA Board and presentations on their work, the General Assembly in The Hague welcomed them with an unanimous vote: the Department of European Studies and International Relations of the University of Nicosia, Cyprus; the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), Oslo; and the Faculty of Economics of the University of Montenegro, Podgorica.
TEPSA also succeeded to get the ERASMUS+ Jean Monnet PONT project with which we will pursue a highly promising set of activities in the interest of our member institutes – especially in view of the annual professional skills training for young academics/young professionals. TEPSA is also partner in a major Horizon 2020 project on the EU and Turkey relations (FEUTURE), which offers TEPSA extended opportunities to participate in the policy formulation on this highly relevant topic for the EU. Plans for the TEPSA Pre-Presidential Conferences in Bratislava (2-3 June 2016) and Malta (November/December 2016) are well on their way.
On this firm and consolidated basis we can in 2016 plan for even more worthwhile activities in the years to come. During the General Assembly in The Hague we had a separate brainstorming session on TEPSA’s future vision and mission. We will take up the new ideas and continue to adapt the association to the needs of its member institutes and current EU realities. Given the current positive outlook for the association, the upcoming election for the new TEPSA Board, would be a good opportunity for a shift of responsibilities to a younger generation within the TEPSA network. We are very open for your suggestions and proposals in this regard. As to the procedure the present Board will come up with suggestions before the Bratislava PPC.
TEPSA looks forward to even more cooperation in the near future, in the PONT and the FEUTURE projects and beyond.
Wolfgang Wessels, Chairperson of the Board
Jaap W. de Zwaan, TEPSA Secretary-General