Bursting the Bubble

Does Europe need a European intelligence agency?

10 February 2016 | by

With the attacks in Paris last year some leaders in the European Parliament have called for a pan-European intelligence agency. The leader of ALDE, Verhofstadt, is a proponent of such an organization. He has called for more cooperation between intelligence agencies or the start of an independent European Intelligence Agency. With this call he has recognized the failure of national agencies, which only defend national interests and not the European interest. Furthermore, national agencies will fail again in the near future, Verhofstadt has said, if they do not cooperate.
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What the Volkswagen scandal reveals about the EU?

8 February 2016 | by

The scandal duly dubbed as Dieselgate, which erupted last September when US authorities found that Volkswagen cars were equipped with a special software to cheat emission tests, does not only raise serious doubts about the ethical conduct of one of Europe’s flagship companies, but also highlights a whole range of structural problems that paralyse the EU.

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The unclear future of EU-ETS: is there still a chance of success?

5 February 2016 | by

The EU-ETS has been a cornerstone tool for combating rising greenhouse gas emission levels since its inception. It began to embody the “polluter pays” principle, which pointed out that emissions create external costs (damage to air, water, soil etc.) that should be paid for by those who produce the emissions. This will make polluting a costly affair and gently nudge the industry towards cleaner production methods. Continue reading

An extended neighbourhood; beyond the reach of the European Union?

3 February 2016 | by

In the context of the on-going crises rattling mainland Europe and its surrounding regions – the migrants overflow, terrorism, political instability – the European Commission released last November a Joint Communication reviewing the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP). The communication follows the 2013 evaluation of the ENP past implementation, and aims to improve partnerships with neighbouring countries, particularly through the promotion of universal values and stabilisation.

But after twelve years of consolidating the European Neighbourhood Policy, the European Union continues to miss an open opportunity: reaching other countries through its Outermost Regions (OMRs). What are the circumstances and how the European Union has fallen short of its full potential in the field of external relations?

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Turkey In: The Storm’s Eye

1 February 2016 | by

A chorus of international condemnation is growing around Turkey’s increasingly authoritarian state. Yet, the EU finds that the country remains on track to join the union. A closer look reveals the slow meltdown of this candidate member and its hidden fatal flaws threatening the EU itself. Continue reading