It is high time to boost and broaden the debate on Europe by focusing on culture, and who better to turn to for an honest view of Europe from the outside than our neighbours? In this first volume of The Dwarfing of Europe? series, thinkers from the Balkans, Belarus, the Middle East and Asia reflect on the continent’s identity, triumphs and foibles. Their insights can help us craft new narratives for Europe.
The European Cultural Foundation has just published my essay “Between pessimism and hope: Europe as seen from the Balkans” in The Dwarfing of Europe? Perspectives from the Balkans, Belarus, the Middle East and Asia, (ECF, Amsterdam 2013). Here's a quote from the back cover:
For more information, click here.
I contributed a chapter on the social affairs agenda of the Belgian EU Council Presidency (co-written by Danielle Dierckx) to this new book: Steven Van Hecke and Peter Bursens (eds), Readjusting the Council Presidency, Brussels: ASP, 2011.
On the occasion of the publication of this book a lunch conference is organized in Brussels, hosted by the Permanent Representation of Belgium to the EU, Wetstraat/Rue de la Loi 61-63. The event takes place on Monday 23 January 2012, 12:30 - 14:30. For more information about the programme and to register follow this link.
On 14 and 15 January I'm participating in a conference on "Romani Mobilities in Europe: Multidisciplinary Perspectives", organized by the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford. The programme can be found here. My paper is called "Between Europeanization and Discrimination: The Roma as a Special Focus of EU Policy". And this is the abstract:
Since the accession of ten post-communist countries to the European Union (EU), various EU institutions have expressed their concern about the precarious social position of the Roma in these new member states. The EU has singled out this group for extra attention. This strategy is based on the assumption that the Roma need support "from above" because they - in contrast to other minorities in this region - have no clear national lobby or external homeland to defend their interests. The EU is thus considered to be the Roma's best ally. This paper sets the benefits of such special EU concern against the problem of its politicization. The EU has managed the put the Roma on the political agenda by considering them a category of people who are exceptionally vulnerable and therefore in need of special attention; but this EU attention - although well intended and, in certain aspects, not unlikely to produce some positive effects - can have problematic unintended consequences once it becomes politicized in the domestic arenas of countries where politicians try to mobilize voters on an ethnic basis and seek to win the support of Euroskeptic citizens.
On October 1st, I'm taking part in "The European Dream", a debate evening about the EU organized by deBuren, the Flemish-Dutch cultural house in Brussels. Location: Flagey, Studio 1, Heilig Kruisplein, 1050 Brussels. More details here.
Update: see pictures here. Video below.
At the annual conference of the Political Studies Association I presented the paper "The Europeanization of Euroskepticism? The meaning of Europe in domestic political competition in Poland", University of Manchester (UK).
Jon Fox and I wrote a paper on "Backdoor nationalism: EU accession and the reinvention of nationalism in Poland and Hungary". We presented it on April 2nd, at the 19th Annual Conference of the Association for the Study of Ethnicity and Nationalism (ASEN), London School of Economics.