About: The Brief

Politics 19-01-2022

The Brief – Grand Tattoo for German pacifism

The Germany of today is inherently a pacifist country. This truth is often lost amid the big news, but political observers of the party landscape in Berlin and beyond will agree.
Climate change 01-11-2021

The Brief – Bad climate for COP26

The COP26 conference in Glasgow opened today (1 November), a day after US President Joe Biden criticized China and Russia for not bringing proposals to the table at the G20 meeting in Rome.
Brexit 29-10-2021

The Brief, powered by Facebook — Who needs Nelson or Napoleon when you can have Brexit?

With a British trawler seized by France, and Royal Navy boats poised to enter the Channel, we could be in 1805, not 2021. Who needs Nelson and Napoleon when you can have Brexit?
Global Europe 24-03-2021

The Brief, powered by FACEBOOK – Syria’s V day

The 10th anniversary of the Syrian uprising passed last week without as much comment as it merited. Next week, the EU will host the fifth international pledging conference tasked with ‘Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region,’ also referred to as ‘Brussels V’.
Brexit 23-03-2021

The Brief, powered by FACEBOOK – From bad deal to no deal

"Once we have left the EU and have a new trade deal, then we will be friends again." So said many a Brexiteer over the last five years. That argument always struck this reporter as spectacularly naïve, almost as naïve as the notion that both sides would follow the principle of rational self-interest in the negotiations.
Global Europe 16-03-2021

The Brief, powered by Eurochild – Global Britain struggles to find its voice

Boris Johnson is one of life’s optimists – it’s one of the reasons why Britons keep giving him the benefit of doubt. And the promise of a ‘Global Britain’ pursuing its new course outside the EU is a suitably grand-sounding project for him. But wishing won’t make it so.
Global Europe 09-03-2021

The Brief, powered by amfori – Africa, the EU and empty vaccine diplomacy

Vaccine diplomacy was at the heart of European Council President Charles Michel’s three-day trip to Rwanda and Kenya this week. Michel said all the right things, stating that “we won’t be safe until everyone is safe” and pointing to the...
Coronavirus 24-02-2021

The Brief, powered by APPLIA – The price of EU indecision

With its vaccination programme well underway, the UK is starting to see the light at the end of the long COVID-19 tunnel, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson has presented a roadmap for "a path to freedom". Europeans are now starting to wonder: Will the Brits be the only ones on the sunny side this summer?
Coronavirus 28-01-2021

The Brief – The self-defeating scramble for vaccines

The scramble for COVID-19 vaccinations is shaping up as a race, and like all races, that means there are winners and losers.
Technology 25-01-2021

The Brief – The sacred right to disconnect

The European Parliament has passed a resolution calling for an EU law that grants workers a new human right: to be free to digitally disconnect from work without facing any negative repercussions from employers.
Future EU 18-01-2021

The Brief, powered by VDMA – Back to the Future of Europe

As soon as the EU has a new set of leaders, it stages its traditional extravaganza in the form of a big conference to discuss the ‘Future of Europe’. Every 10 years, there is a new one. Contrary to its...
Enlargement 18-12-2020

The Brief, powered by Goldman Sachs – Which vaccine for the Western Balkans?

The first COVID-19 vaccine will be authorised within a week, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced this week, and EU member states have been pressing ahead with plans for mass vaccination programmes while also keeping measures tight to...

The Brief, powered by APPLiA – Au revoir, consensus?

The new NATO reform report recommended a more political role for the Western alliance, which is unlikely to go without some resistance in allied capitals. Au revoir, consensus? Not quite. After French President Emmanuel Macron said NATO was suffering “brain...
Non-discrimination 27-11-2020

The Brief, powered by Facebook – Refuge of the roads

In the words of Joni Mitchell, the iconic Canadian singer-songwriter, you don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone, and this phrase has never rung truer than this year. A whole host of privileges, taken by many of us as...
Coronavirus 26-11-2020

The Brief, powered by Facebook – Christmas slopes on the ropes

We're in the middle of a full-blown second wave of a health crisis, with millions of businesses at risk of bankruptcy and families being separated over Christmas. Yet for some, there is no question more urgent than how we will survive Christmas without skiing.
Transport 07-07-2020

Trains take over, ETS ahoy & road ragers

Welcome to EURACTIV’s weekly Transport Brief – your one port of call for all the news moving the world and much more! In this edition: MEPs set a course for the EU's carbon market, airline bailouts keep coming and Europe's space agency unveils billions in new contracts.
Economy & Jobs 09-06-2020

The Brief – The Taxman Cometh

Governments of EU countries have jealously guarded tax collection duties but the coronavirus crisis has dealt Brussels an opportunity to change that. If member states do not allow the EU to drum up its own cash, they will be on the hook for hundreds of billions of euros in debt repayments.

The Brief – What’s the point of Charles Michel?

It’s been a difficult few months for the EU since the bloc's top jobs were divided up – Brexit, migration, climate change and a full-blown pandemic. It amounts to the biggest test of Charles Michel's career.
Global Europe 04-06-2020

The Brief – Images from America

The story is pretty much known: George Floyd was murdered 10 days ago in Minneapolis when a police officer pinned him to the ground with his knee on his neck for nearly nine minutes with the help of three other...

The Brief – Words have power

During a press conference on the front steps of Rideau Cottage in Ottawa on Tuesday (2 June), Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was asked for his thoughts on US President Donald Trump’s call for military action against protesters. After painful...
Outer space 02-06-2020

The Brief – Ad astra et altruism

Elon Musk’s success in blasting two astronauts into orbit provided a welcome - albeit brief - distraction from the grim situation plaguing most of the world. Humanity’s space exploits can tell us something about where society is going and, more importantly, failing.
Global Europe 29-05-2020

The Brief – Trump and the gatekeepers

In the world we used to know, Donald Trump was a Twitter fan and a big champion of this social media channel. In the last two days, the world is no longer as we knew it.
Politics 28-05-2020

The Brief – Revolution in the air

The recovery plan presented by the President of the European Commission yesterday (Wednesday 27 May) is not only spectacular because of its size. In fact, it is the new reality behind these figures that makes it truly revolutionary.
Future EU 27-05-2020

The Brief – Marshalling the funds

‘Whatever it takes’ was the message from European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Wednesday (27 May) as the EU unveiled an ambitious recovery plan to help its members who have been worst affected by the coronavirus pandemic.