Saturday, 31 July 2010

The state of the European Union: EU-27 Watch No 9 published

Actually, EU-27 Watch offers more than it promises. Despite its name, the Internet platform compiles materials on European policy debates in 31 countries, as reported by researchers from national research institutes (think tanks): 27 EU member states as well as the four candidate countries for accession, Croatia, Turkey, Macedonia and Iceland.

The EU-27 Watch No 9 now published is an important overview of the European Union as seen from national capitals through expert eyes.

Under the Current Issue, the Introduction by Katrin Böttger and Julian Plottka provides an excellent summary of European Union events and opinions during the latest six months: The EU in 2010 – between excitement over the Lisbon Treaty and anxieties about the financial and economic crisis.

Alternatively, you can access the pdf version of the EU-27 Watch No 9 Introduction (and the Questionnaire) as a pdf file. The main policy areas covered are:

• Implementation of the Lisbon Treaty;
• Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy;
• European economic policy and the financial and economic crisis;
• Climate and energy policy; and
• Other current issues and discourses in the reporting countries.

Economic policy

Note that EU economic policies and the financial and economic crises are discussed extensively, not only in the dedicated chapter, but in the own-initiative chapter on domestic debates as well (Other current issues). The economy is the central issue right now, even if the remedies to apply are far from clear at this stage.

Countries and policy areas

There are now two ways to approach the new EU-27 report. You can read the country sections on the various policy debates, or you can peruse the policies you are interested in sorted into country contributions.

One thing I missed from the old EU-27 reports was the convenient possibility to access or download the whole publication as one file, at one go.

Ralf Grahn

P.S. It is easier to understand a language than to use it correctly, and as Eurobloggers we should promote interaction among Europeans. Grahnlaw has adopted a multilingual comment policy:

I do my best to read comments in Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish or Swedish, even if the Grahnlaw blog and my possible replies are in English.