Posts in "Analysis" Category

Von der Leyen clinches the EU top job, but the hard work has just begun

Ursula von der Leyen won her job by a margin of nine votes: 383 MEPs backed her on July 16 in Strasbourg, just a shade above the 374 absolute majority needed. But it was enough. The European Parliament formally confirmed the outgoing German Defence Minister as the European Commission’s first ever woman President. She has made history. Now, however, her real work begins.

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As the world changes, NATO has to move faster

It has been a while since NATO first looked beyond the North Atlantic, the area defined in its own name. It now has activities stretching from Afghanistan and the African Union, via the Red Sea. But this year, NATO is set to go even further afield, when it recognises a new frontier in defence: space.

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The EU deal on top jobs puts women in the driving seat

A new generation is set to take on the European Union’s top jobs, and for the first time, women will be in the driving seat. German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen was chosen by EU leaders as the first woman President of the European Commission on July 2, at the end of an acrimonious, three-day summit in Brussels. The leaders also chose France’s Christine Lagarde, who currently runs the International Monetary Fund, to head the European Central Bank, arguably an even more powerful position. The two other major posts were given to Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel, who was named as president of the European Council; and Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell, who will be the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

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Why Europe should look to the stars

July 20 marks 50 years since astronaut Neil Armstrong took that small step for man and giant leap for mankind, becoming Earth’s first ever visitor to the Moon. That moment in 1969 is etched in the annals of human history. And yet, cosmic exploration has stalled in the half century since. Probes journey to the planets and escape the solar system, satellites and space stations orbit Earth, but they’re nothing to match the Moon landings.

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What’s on tap for the beer market?

Archaeologists can trace evidence of beer to as far back as 13,000 years ago, yet despite its ancient roots, brewing today is an innovative activity. Novel techniques are used to source the ingredients, brew them, bottle the beer and market the drink. Today, beermaking is more diverse than ever, with more breweries experimenting with new flavours and styles. But as customers become more demanding, beermakers are facing new challenges.

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EU tech policies should wake up Europe’s sleeping giants

Now that the European Parliament elections are over, attention is shifting to the European Union’s agenda over the next five years. There are many tricky dossiers sitting in the EU’s in-tray, but it should include amongst its top priorities clear and effective digital policies over areas like data and artificial intelligence (AI), while underpinning overall competitiveness in the industrial and service sectors.

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Press Release #WorldAtHerFeet: Women’s Football Shatters Records but Obstacles Still Stand in Way of Progress, says BCW report

LONDON, 29 May, 2019 — 2019 is shaping up to be a year of transformation for women’s football with record-breaking crowds, major sponsorship deals and increasing levels of coverage. The women’s World Cup (7 June-7 July) could reach a billion viewers and eclipse the Cricket and Rugby World Cups. But obstacles still stand in the way of progress and equality in the female game, according to the #WorldAtHerFeet report unveiled today by BCW (Burson Cohn & Wolfe).   

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Europeans voted against the status quo. And for Europe

It is easy to get carried away by the first declarations of victory and the early headlines. As the initial results of the European Parliament elections trickled in on Sunday, it looked like this would be another triumph to savour for Eurosceptic populist parties, who came first in France, Britain, Italy, Hungary, Poland and the Czechia.

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The European Parliament enters uncharted territory

This year’s European Parliament elections, which take place from May 23 to 26, come at a time of unprecedented public debate on European Union issues. The EU now has more influence over our daily lives than ever before, it is central to the national political discourse in every member state, the past five years have provided a cornucopia of EU issues to argue over, and the campaign has been more visible than at any time since MEPs were directly elected in 1979. Yet at the end of all this, the result could be a Parliament that reflects the current centrifugal forces across the EU and where there is no stable majority. The key question is whether this fragmentation and internal division might undermine the exercise of Parliament’s legislative competences and thus its political authority.

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This anniversary year should remind NATO of its bonds forged in battle

This is a year of birthdays for anyone involved in Europe’s defence. In early April, NATO celebrated the 70th anniversary of its founding document, the Washington Treaty, which set up the most successful security alliance the world has ever seen. And it was forged less than five years after one of the most important military operations ever undertaken: the D-Day landings on June 6, 1944, 75 years ago.

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