European Union


EU Joint Programming aims at closer cooperation in development policies and European donor countries. The decentralised and flexible approach is showing initial signs of success.


Are the German Greens compatible with Angela Merkel? How can we explain the success of the xenophobic ‘Alternative for Germany’ (AfD) party? And what awaits Europe in the year 2017? An interview with Ralf Fücks.


The EU-Turkey relations have been put to test on numerous occasions this year. In the first half of 2017 further political events of importance are to be expected which will set the path for future relations.

Donald Trump Pinatas in a shop in the USA

Ralf Fücks visited the United States in the week after the elections for talks and events in New York and Washington DC. Reflections and highlights from a nation in shock.

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Latest Publications

The 2016 Presidential election results have been hard to predict but the Republican Donald Trump had been able to convince more than 50% of the electoral delegates. At our event we analysed the outcome and its impact on Europe.

After the ‘Leave’ vote in last June’s Brexit referendum, the European Union is shaking on its foundations. Our office invited young Europeans to debate about the Europe they want with EU veterans, Members of the European Parliament, EU experts from think tanks and representatives of civil society.

The results of the Russian parliamentary election in September 2016 were predictable in many ways, But is the situation as clear as it seems and what does this recent election tell us about the political situation in Russia?

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External Relations

Turkey and Europe: Taken on and around Taksim Square, Istanbul, in the first week of the protests

Pride and prejudice, polarisation and division, progression and tradition: what makes Erdogan so popular in and outside Turkey


This contribution deals with the issue of resilience, coordination of EU Member States and the Israeli controlled Area C


The EU lacks a decisive and clear policy  in the Middle East conflict and towards Palestine. Its aim is rather to contain the conflict and not let it spin out of control.

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European Integration

Italiano: Matteo Renzi alla conferenza stampa post referendum costituzionale 2016

Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi decided to stake everything on the referendum: his personal credibility and his political legitimacy. His failure leads us to the question what kind of change Renzi was actually representing.


Bulgarians worldwide have been called to vote in the national presidential election. For hundreds of Bulgarians in Brussels this turned into a Kafkaesque experience.

We are not putting our umbrellas away. Women's Strike.

Over the last weeks Poland has witnessed an unprecedented mobilisation of women against the tightening of the abortion law. Our colleague Gert Röhrborn from our Warsaw office sheds light on recent events.

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the year of living dangerously

Never since its foundation has the European Union been so close to the edge as in the beginning of this year. The ferocious terrorist attacks in Paris at the end of last year and the continuing influx of migrants and refugees have shaken up the comfort zone Europeans had taken for granted. Civil rights are being eroded; the Schengen system is near to death; fences and walls are being built not only at the external borders of the EU but even between Member States; right-wing parties are gaining ground throughout Europe; right-wing Eurosceptic governments make decisions on European level increasingly difficult and that the eurozone crisis is no longer talked about does not mean that it has disappeared over night. The UK might be leaving the EU soon and this could foster a new version of the apocalyptic domino theory. At the end of 2016: what will be left of the ‘ever closer union’ which was once designated as the aim of the EU treaties? Will there be enough time to reconnect what has been drifting apart and what has been destroyed?

For more information, please contact

Marianne Ebertowski
Director European Policy Programme
Tel. +32-2-743 41 05

New dossiers

Creator: Kent MacElwee. Creative Commons License LogoThis image is licensed under Creative Commons License.

Our "Expert Workshop Southern Neighbourhood" brought together experts from different backgrounds with our regional offices and the contributors to our web dossier Rebuilding the Neighbourhood to discuss the European Neighbourhood Policy.

The eastern and southern neighbourhood of the European Union are in turmoil. The conflicts at the EU’s eastern and southern borders no longer stop there. How can an unstable EU contribute to the stabilisation and the rebuilding of its neighbourhood? How do people in the neighbourhood see the European Union and the state it is in?

Browse our TTIP Index


Position papers, reports and and other materials

Events at hbs Brussels

Mar 20
The liberal democracy crisis and the future of the EU
Apr 01Apr 03
A Training Summit for European Immigrant & Minority Leaders

The Programme "Europe For Citizens" 2015

The programme "Europe for Citizens" aims to make the European Union, its institutions, committees, workings, and representatives, more visible and comprehensible to Europe's citizens.

Previous blogs

The Euro Crisis 2012 blog deals with the effects that the economic and financial crisis has had on the European Union and its policies. The authors of the blog look at European policies from different angles and evaluate and analyize the crisis management of the European Union.

The Eurozone 2013 blog reports and prospects and challenges of the Eurozone and points out possible solutions to the crisis.

This blog focuses on the question what reforms and actions are needed to reshape the European Union, its institutions and policies in a way that makes them more democratic, transparent and efficient.

Young people from France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Slovakia, Sweden and the United Kingdom share their ideas about the current state of Europe and the rise of right-wing populism and extremism.


Last year we invited 15 young people from the southern member states of the eurozone and from Germany to Brussels in order to discuss the future of their own countries with their peers and EU stakeholders.


When Croatia started negotiating its membership six years ago, the enthusiasm was great. What do Croatians think, hope and fear in light of the approaching EU-Membership?


The Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung European Union has asked authors from various European countries to write about what these various historical dates mean for the presence and future of Europe.


Reclaiming the European Project

Ever since the outburst of the sovereign debt crisis in the eurozone the EU makes the impression of a punch-drunk boxer just before the knock-out. Is the once great European project failing?

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