Public Affairs

Politics 27-03-2017

Lobby transparency reform: Here we go again

Scandals from Dieselgate to tobacco, glyphosate to high finance, have contributed to widespread public cynicism over the power of lobbyists in the EU. Campaigners are facing the upcoming EU lobby transparency negotiations with a mixture of weary resignation and apprehension, writes Vicky Cann.

Freedom of thought 10-03-2017

A Ministry of Truth in the European Parliament?

The live-streaming of European Parliament debates, established some years ago, was a real step towards more democratic participation and transparency. But the EU assembly is now apparently having second thoughts, writes Sophia Kuby.

16-02-2017

Comitology reform: Doing, undoing and redoing is still hard work

To avoid taking responsibility for contentious proposals like GMO and pesticide approvals, the European Commission’s proposed comitology reform aims to put member states in the frontline, writes Daniel Guéguen.

EU halts release of anti-corruption report

In Romania, politicians were preparing to legalise political corruption, and elsewhere the misuse of EU funds makes headlines every day. Sandor Lederer asks why has the Commission decided not to release an in-depth anti-corruption report.

Development Policy 18-01-2017

Fight Inequality Alliance comes to ‘corporate’ Brussels

Brussels is not a hotbed of popular mobilisation. Few rights struggles start here, but it is one of the biggest power centres in the world and it is one of the main chapters in the book on inequality, write Laura Sullivan and Jenny Ricks.

Elections 16-01-2017

The Parliament that Europeans want to hear from

The European Parliament is delivering, but there is still room for improvement in the way it communicates to both the younger and older generations, writes Vice-President Ramón Valcárcel.

Global Europe 11-01-2017

Thinking about propaganda

Propaganda speaks the language of reason, even when its goal is to mislead, writes Jacob L. Shapiro.

05-01-2017

EU turning 60 in 2017? Fake news!

In its first announcement of this year, the European Commission has started with patently obvious fake news, writes David Heilbron Price.

04-01-2017

Does corruption threaten Europe?

Current debate rarely attributes the rise of populism in European politics to the perceived prevalence of corruption. Yet public opinion often shows that citizens believe their representatives to be corrupt, write Laurence Cockcroft and Anne-Christine Wegener.

Digital 09-12-2016

Using online technology to beat hate

Hate is brewing in society, and its expression through online speech is real and corrosive. Internet companies and NGOs are now working with the EU to fight back, writes Robin Sclafani.

09-12-2016

MEPs need a long hard look in the mirror

MEPs have been quick to point out the reforms needed to improve accountability in the Commission but have not turned the same critical eye on themselves, writes Myriam Douo.

Tired of the founding fathers? Let’s celebrate the women building Europe

Gender equality is a prerequisite to achieving a sustainable Europe that has the buy in of its citizens - and this includes women at the heart of all decision-making, write Joanna Maycock and Petros Fassoulas.

Trade & Society 22-11-2016

MEPs’ sad games undermine the Parliament’s due rights

In their attempt to fast-track the EU-Canada agreement, some MEPs are reversing years of progress in democratising the European Union, warn MEPs Anne-Marie Mineur, Bart Staes and Pavel Poc.

Global Europe 14-11-2016

Trump win is a red flag for French 2017 elections

Politicians can err in believing that vote choice is influenced by rational decision-making, but we’ve seen in the past months how emotion can trump logic, writes NoelleAnne O’Sullivan.

14-11-2016

Lessons from the Barroso affair: How to reform Commission ethics

After months of procrastinating, Jean-Claude Juncker has now suggested extending the cooling off period for former Commission presidents. Unfortunately, the proposal is too weak to prevent scandals like ‘Barrosogate’ from happening again.

Global Europe 10-11-2016

Time to take back control – the morning after Trump

Much like with Brexit, the question facing EU leaders and influencers after Donald Trump’s election is what next? The crux of the answer is: more of the same, writes Tom Parker.

29-08-2016

Barroso’s revolving door scandal must bring tougher rules

If the Goldman Sachs appointment of ex-European Commission president Barroso does not push the Commission to crack down on the ever turning revolving door, nothing will, writes Vicky Cann on behalf of ALTER-EU.

Global Europe 17-08-2016

Nationalism, technology, and the Olympics

The Olympic Games have turned into a competition between nations, rather than individuals, writes George Friedman.

In Europe, Weber’s bureaucracy still rules

The European institutions remain fundamentally Weberian in nature and they are considered to be slow reformers. But there are clear differences between public administration systems across Europe, writes Steven Van de Walle.

Euro & Finance 19-07-2016

Commission’s private-sector ‘revolving door’ should work in public interest

Former Commission President Barroso’s job offer at Goldman Sachs has prompted outrage. But the real problem is the EU’s lack of transparency and democratic oversight. Interaction with the private sector through the so-called “revolving door” should be encouraged, write Katinka Brouwer, Penelope Bergkamp and Dr Lucas Bergkamp.

12-07-2016

How to prevent Barroso from becoming yet another lobbyist

Contrary to the salvific rhetoric embraced by the Juncker Commission there are legal obligations preventing José Manuel Barroso from taking up the job as non-executive chairman of Goldman Sachs, write Alberto Alemanno and Benjamin Bodson.

Future EU 30-06-2016

The bright side of Brexit: Lobbying jobs in Brussels in high demand

One industry that is sure to benefit from Brexit is the government affairs sector, as worried UK businesses and trade associations try to adjust to a confusing new world, writes Aart van Iterson.

Elections 19-05-2016

Europe must remember its anti-fascist roots

Has the EU forgotten it was the product of anti-fascist ideals? The question may sound absurd to anyone not following the latest political developments. But the situation in Austria is cause for concern, write Guillaume Balas, Sergio Cofferati, Curzio Maltese and Dimitrios Papadimoulis.

27-10-2015

The European Citizens’ Initiative needs promised ‘start button’

After over three years of use, none of nearly 50 proposed ECIs have resulted in a legislative proposal. The European Commission simply declined to act, leaving ECI supporters feeling betrayed, writes Carsten Berg.