International Week 2017

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The EU in a world on the move: punching below or above its weight?


Monday, 6th of February |  10:00 – 10:45 

The EU in a World on the Move: Punching Below or Above its Weight?

Sophie Vanhoonacker is Professor in European Administrative Governance and dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASoS), Maastricht University. She also holds a Jean Monnet Chair.
Her main field of research is in the area of the Common Foreign and Security Policy with a special focus on processes of institutionalization. Recent publications have dealt with the emerging EU diplomatic system and the role of bureaucracies in the European foreign policy process. She is currently involved in a Horizon 2020 project on Preventing and Responding to Conflict: Developing EU Civilian Capabilities for a Sustainable Peace (EU-CIVCAP) (2015-2018).

The EU in a World on the Move: Punching Below or Above its Weight?
This lecture discusses the international role of the European Union in the 21st century against the background of the changing reality of domestic, regional and global politics. What is the role of the EU and its member states, now that we have left the ‘mad’ 20th century behind? Is Europe a continent in decline or has integration within the EU revitalised and imbued it with the potential of being a new global player in a multipolar world without a dominant power? What will be the consequences of a Brexit on EU external action?
The crises in Ukraine and Syria illustrate that it is not an option for the Union to merely sit on the side-lines and are a good example of the high complexity of the challenges that need to be faced.
By putting the EU’s role in a broader regional and international context and by analysing some of the key regional and global responses that have been formulated so far, this lecture discusses how in recent years the EU has been trying to redefine its international role.