Europe is failing to make the political choices necessary to ensure the security and prosperity of its citizens in an interdependent world. It must cultivate a rejuvenated sense of purpose if it is to rise to the challenges of the coming years. The ‘Europe in the World’ pamphlet outlines how this might be done.
A New Vision for Europe in the World
Global interdependence is the new context within which Europe must act. The biggest global problems that will dominate the 21st Century, from terrorism to climate change, from mass migrations to organised crime, cannot be solved by nations acting alone. They can only be tackled successfully by deploying exactly the soft power that Europe has built over the last half century.
All of these problems are urgent. The ticking clock of Climate Change warns us of the dangers of inaction. In order to live by its values, Europe must invest externally as well as internally to secure the success of all.
Europe has the economic resources, social cohesion and political alignment to do this, but needs a modern prospectus for its citizens built around a clear vision of its place in the world. This must instil confidence in European citizens who remain unaware of Europe’s unique assets. This will require a very different set of political choices than those currently on offer.
The political choices we must now make will define Europe’s future; its purpose; and its identity. The ‘Europe in the World’ pamphlet sets out five critical choices:
Redefining Success: Europe must be confident, not anxious. Anxiety paralyses, confidence energises. We must redefine the meaning of economic success, underpinning it with meaningful measures of sustainable prosperity such as well-being, income stability, environmental quality and social mobility.
Building Intergenerational Cooperation: Europe must build a new intergenerational contract between young and old. We must agree a fair sharing of future risks between the generations or we will fail to invest in a sustainable future.
Achieving Energy Security and Climate Security: Europe must develop a secure, low carbon economy without waiting for others. Progress towards achieving these twin goals should become the critical measure by which Europe’s future success is judged.
Investing in a successful China: Europe must engage positively with China on the basis of mutual interests. Europe best defends its core economic and security interests by investing in China’s development as a stable economy and society.
A European budget for the future: Europe must invest in managing the future instead of the past. The most powerful tool in Europe’s policy armoury is the budget. Spending should drive innovation, resource-efficient infrastructure and external stability.
Further details of the workshops and thinking events undertaken in the creation of the pamphlet can be found in the library.
On the 6th April, E3G held the second in its series of Thinking Events, this time in Berlin in association with our friends at the European School of Governance. Discussion Overview The discussions at the roundtable revealed a shared sense that: Europe needs to take global interdependence seriously –...
On the 21st February, E3G held a Thinking Event in Brussels in association with our friends at The Centre. The aim of the event was to undertake some critical shared thinking on whether Europe can become a pathfinder for the global transition to sustainable development. A focus was placed...
On the 11th October E3G held a roundtable discussion in Brussels on the topic of ‘A Vision for Europe in the 21st Century’ in association with The Centre. Senior figures from the European Parliament and European Commission participated in the discussion which brought together the topics of Climate Security...
On the 14th April, John Ashton participated in a debate in Bonn hosted by Stiftung Zukunftsfähigkeit (the Foundation for Sustainability) and Nordrhein-Westfälische Stiftung für Umwelt und Entwicklung (North-Rhine/Westphalian Foundation for Environment and Development) entitled “Thinking about world responsibility”. The text of John Ashton’s speech follows...
On the 7th March 2005, E3G held a brainstorming workshop at Venice International University to start its work on Europe. The summary, full report and list of participants are attached.
The May / June 2004 edition of Green Futures magazine featured an opinion piece by John Ashton on the connection between environmentalism and the Future of Europe. The environmentalist’s case for Europe Pundits are predicting record low turnouts in the European elections this June – though only heroic levels of apathy would...
The Spring 2004 edition of ‘Inside Track’ - the magazine of Green Alliance - was a special edition entitled “All in the same boat: what the US/Europe relationship means for the environment”. John Ashton contributed an article, which can also be found on page 8 of the attached PDF version.