This post is about tertiary eduction in the EU. We Europeans have to admit, that when it comes to cutting-edge science, we lag behind the US. The US has some of the worlds best research universities. Harvard, Stanford, Berkeley and of courese the MIT are prestigious names all over the world.
?If the Balkans find that too many obstacles are strewn about the road to Brussels, they may well be tempted to set out on the shorter road to Istanbul?
(Misha Glenny, Balkan political analyst)
Practically the Eastern EU enlargement for the moment is stopped. Croatia?s membership is a bit delayed, Turkey?s EU bid is dead as continent simply has no intention of ever incorporating 70 million Muslims and the rest ? such as Serbia ? are still more or less in association process. Tens of thousands demonstrators demanded early elections in Serbia at a protest rally 16th April 2011, blaming Serbia?s pro-Western government for a deepening economic crisis and alleged corruption. The government has rejected the demand for early elections, saying they will be held after Serbia wins candidacy for EU membership in the autumn. European Commission (EC) unanimously agrees that early parliamentary elections in Serbia should not be called which position in my opinion gives a strange picture about EU?s view towards democracy ? really a view that democratic elections would harm stability and EU-accession.
I never thought the title of my 100th blogpost with Blogactiv will sound so pessimistic.
Third time lucky? Our third informal ministerial ?competitiveness? meeting arranged by the Hungarian EU Council presidency seems to unearth a rich vein of precious ore, especially for those who are interested in research, development and innovation (RDI).
Let us look at how informal meetings of the EU Council inform and enlighten citizens, choosing the first example offered this year by the Hungarian presidency and relevant to the competitiveness challenges important to us all. This leads us to the nourishing gathering of employment ministers, relevant in the context of the Europe 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth (EU2020).
It has passed without barely a mention. But does anyone really care that the European Union?s Headline Goal 2010 has now lapsed? Given the energies required for the establishment of the European External Action Service (EEAS), and the priorities thrown-up by the crises in the MENA region, it is no wonder that this set of technical civil-military ambitions has largely been ignored in the public domain. And this is to say nothing of the progress of the parallel Civilian Headline Goal 2010. But it is precisely because of the present crises in the MENA region, and the conceptual establishment of the EUFOR Libya ? which will wait on standby until the United Nations gives it the mandate to start delivering aid -, that there is an important need to assess what the EU has been doing in civil-military terms over the last 6 years since 2004. The first Headline Goal 2003, which aimed at the setting up of an EU Rapid Reaction Force, was relatively successful but how has its 2010 follow-up fared?
The European Union and the EU member states have programmes for competitiveness in and of Europe, but the Europe 2020 growth strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth (EU2020) and the relaunch of the Single Market (through the Single Market Act SMA) need to develop much beyond ritualistic planning and reporting chores for a handful of EU and central government officials.
The dispute over the migration of Tunisian refugees has prompted Italy and France to demand stricter control of Europe’s external borders and a temporary suspension of passport-free travel within Europe. Such a reform of the Schengen agreement conflicts with the EU’s principle of unity, commentators complain, calling for a common immigration policy instead.
from Open Europe blog
Fears of a new wave of immigration are stalking western Europe. The row between France and Italy is symptomatic of the tensions. Today?s meeting between President Sarkozy and Silvio Berlusconi was intended to calm the situation, and an agreement was reached to modify Schengen to allow for ?exceptional circumstances?, but France is the clear demandeur that the Schengen agreement must be modified to allow stricter cross-border controls.
The talk of a Greek restructuring has resurfaced again, following Wolfgang Schauble?s seeming acceptance that one might be necessary in the near future. It looks like he?s back tracked today, claiming he was ?misinterpreted?, but the damage was already done – Greek cost of borrowing has already hit new highs and the euro weakened significantly.
Despite its position out on Europe?s eastern flank, Belarus has historically and culturally been at the heart of European civilisation. Sooner or later, its time will come to rejoin the family of democratic nations, writes Uladzimir Arlou
Over on Conservative Home we argue that the main political lesson for the UK government from the Portuguese bail-out is don?t give up EU vetoes without thinking through all possible consquences. We argue:
In a series of blog posts I corralled the latest entries published on my four blogs and in three languages: Grahnlaw (EN), Grahnblawg (SV), Eurooppaoikeus (FI) and Grahnlaw Suomi Finland (EN, FI, SV).
Italy’s Lega Nord has probably been dreaming of this moment for years: a head-on European collision over immigration, with Italy pitted against the Commission and other EU governments. The 20,000 North African migrants stranded on the tiny Italian island of Lampedusa provided Italian Interior Minister Roberto Maroni (from Lega Nord, see picture) with an”opportunity” to make a point that he hardly would miss out on.
Germany is Europe’s “indispensable nation,” in charge of “the unipolar moment within the eurozone,” and it is to the EU what the United States is to NATO. That’s how European and US think tankers compare Germany with the US:
Yesterday, we looked at the background, the endorsement from the European Council, the advance information from the Commission, as well as the NPthinking blog, EurActiv, the letter from nine European leaders and the recent resolutions by the European Parliament, in ‘European Council: Single Market ? time to act?’
You have to be an admirer of the European Union. This polity that a professor of mine once called ?a negotiated negotiation system for future negotiations? has an intrinsic beauty that you can only discover when you take the time to make long random walks through its endless piles of laws and regulations, of institutions and institutional roles, of people and procedures.
Can we hope for more ambitious economic policy reforms from the EU member states? How did the European Council and the European Parliament endorse Single Market reform? What did the Commission’s Single Market Act (SMA) look like the morning after having been provisionally launched? How did the General Affairs Council (GAC) practice open and fair dealing in its follow-up of the meetings of the Europan Council meetings on 4 February, 11 March and 24-25 March 2011, including the questions we have followed: sustainable public finances, growth-enhancing reforms (Europe 2020) and the Single Market Act?