Month: February 2021

The EU’s multilateral ambitions: the why and the how

On 17 February, the High Representative Josep Borrell and the European Commission released a Joint Communication on strengthening the EU’s contribution to rules-based multilateralism: on first sight a document in the continuity of previous ones, but also one that reveals important changes in how the EU sees itself on the international stage. One might question …

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Fighting precarity: a paradigm shift from equality-in-prosperity to solidarity-in-wellbeing

We stand at a pivotal point in history – one that contains the opportunity to replace the equality-in-prosperity formula of progressive politics with a new one: solidarity-in-wellbeing. For the past 100 years, the critique of capitalism has centred on unfair distributive outcomes (economic inequality), as well as the damage that consumerism and the commitment to …

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Reforming the financial structure of ‘small-buffers’ capitalism

We live in an advanced form of what the US economist Hyman Minsky had termed ‘money manager capitalism’ 25 years ago. Today, the dominant role played by the captains of industry in the area of industrial capitalism falls to the money managers in charge of hedge funds and pension funds. By identifying this new incarnation …

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Using the history of technological revolutions to understand the present and shape the future

The beginning of the year 2021 feels like a crossroads. We have now been through three major crises in the last 20 years, each worse than the last: the dotcom bubble of 2000, the Great Recession of 2008, and the global recession triggered by the Covid pandemic, bringing what might be the biggest economic downturn …

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A great window of opportunity for a progressive agenda in Europe

The 2019 European elections finally saw the turnout going slightly up. In parallel, Social Democrats noted an unanticipated positive result. Almost two years into the legislative period, despite the pandemic, the polls consistently show two tendencies. First, Europeans tend to be positive about the EU in numbers comparable to before the 2008 crash. Second, progressives …

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A rethink of EU education policies

Education policies play an essential role in the operation and governing of societies. They fulfil a host of functions: they promote societal values, provide a skilled workforce, socially integrate societies, generate economic development, make societies more peaceful and politically stable, and increase the understanding of other people, be they within or outside the same country. …

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Towards a European Education Union

The future of Europe depends on how decision-makers manage to raise the profile of educational policies in the design of their recovery plans. The Covid-19 crisis has shown the weaknesses of our education systems and the growing need for a common European response, designed to prepare our societies for future challenges. A European Education Area …

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Implementing the European Skills Agenda

The European Skills Agenda is a call for action on a set of ambitious targets, and involves the upskilling and reskilling of millions of adult people by 2025. To implement the Skills Agenda, governments and social partners, state and non-state actors will have to innovate their cooperation arrangements, and learn new roles and responsibilities. The …

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First years last forever

Despite the evidence from research and practice, as well as substantial investment in early childhood education and care in Europe, there is still a long way to go to achieving access for all children to high-quality free services that pay special attention to children in vulnerable situations, in respect of child rights and developmental needs. …

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10 years after Mubarak’s fall – there was no ‘Arab spring’

Ten years ago, after weeks of demonstrations on downtown Cairo’s Tahrir Square, President Hosni Mubarak’s government crumbled. The regime that had led Egypt since 1952 was apparently ousted. The upheaval was certainly profound. But to speak, as Western media did, of an ‘Arab Spring’, charging it with improper political meanings, was a glaring mistake. It …

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