Book review

The people’s verdict – adding informed citizen voices to public decision-making by Claudia Chwalisz

Reviewed by Sophie Pornschlegl17 October 2017 | Sophie Pornschlegl
Foto: Rowman & Littlefield International

With case studies from Australia and Canada and a short comparative analysis of deliberative formats in the UK, this short book does not provide an in-depth analysis of deliberative formats; Rather, it is an attempt to show skeptical decision-makers that, given the right framework, people can be good, legitimate and efficient decision-makers. (more…)

Greece Sustainable Growth Analysis Opinions

Greek islands going green

Greek islands going renewable and intelligent: a driver for the energy transition in the EU?2 October 2017 | Vasiliki Kyriakou
"Power transmission lines" (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) by Oran Viriyincy

Greek non-interconnected islands are small isolated systems bearing the great potential to become autonomous in terms of energy, using renewable and intelligent systems. Is there a potential for small islands to drive Europe’s transition into a sustainable, low-carbon and inclusive economy? What role can Greek islands play in this process?

Greece Migration & Integration Interview

Migration crisis in Greece: the need for a European action plan

An expert interview with Dimitris Varadinis for #DialogueOnEurope2 October 2017
"Refugee Crisis in Greece" - CAFOD Photo Library

Long considered as an emigration country, Greece started receiving immigrants in the 90’s. Over the last few years, the country had to deal with huge number of newcomers and despite the engagement of the social society, it doesn’t have the means to properly assist them. Greek authorities repeatedly asked for the support of the other European member states, which are reluctant to take responsibility.

France Migration & Integration Interview

The French migration policy: a tragic lack of long-term vision

An expert interview with Marie-Laure Basilien-Gainche for #DialogueOnEurope25 September 2017 | Marie-Laure Basilien-Gainche
European Parliament

Marie-Laure Basilien-Gainche comments on the way France and Europe fail to deal with the so-called “refugee crisis”. If some improvement have been achieved, in particular regarding the relocation system, integration remains a major issue, even for second or third-generation immigrants.

Italy Migration & Integration Interview

Adapting to increased immigration: the problems faced by Italy

Insider perspective on working towards integration and refugee inclusion with Valentina Fabbri18 September 2017
"Refugees at Reception Centre in Rome" - United Nations Photo

In this interview for #DialogueOnEurope, Valentina Fabbri highlights flaws and particularities of the Italian system and its effects on refugees living in various capacities in Italy, comparing these to the European context.

Portugal Migration Integration Interview

Migration and Integration in Portugal: An example to follow?

A look at a country with one of the world's best level of protection for refugees' human rights, by Claudia Petra11 September 2017 | Claudia Pedra
Pedro Ribeiro Simões

Claudia Pedra, Director of the Network for Strategic and International Studies, comments on the way Portugal deals with the refugee crisis. Even in a country with one of the best asylum laws worldwide, integration and tolerance seem to remain problematic issues.

Populism

Populism is not the problem

Why we should focus on values in political debate instead of style25 July 2017 | Hanno Burmester
"AfD Wahlkampfauftakt" (CC BY-NC 2.0) by strassenstriche.net

Populism is everywhere these days. Not only as a phenomenon but also as a topic in political discourse. Yet, the closer you look at it, the more you will realize that populism is quite a messy term. It signifies everything from an unease towards dissent, to the fear of a weakened democracy. More importantly, once you get a grip on how you define the term you will realize that populism may be destructive and inflammatory but is not the real problem. It is mostly a symptom for fundamental conflicts in society.

Social Cohesion Opinion

Tackling the exclusion of minorities in Europe

Mentoring: towards a culture of inclusion in Europe24 July 2017 | Hanaé Allali
"Mustang Mentoring 2011" (CC BY-NC 2.0) by bujiie

In Europe we know that Portugal, France and Italy are the most unequal countries according to OECD household incomes.
 In addition to income inequality, inequality of opportunities may result from different types of discrimination, including discrimination based on gender, ethnicity, or religion. Widespread inequalities lead to the exclusion of minorities. Despite the fact that ethnic, cultural and religious diversity is a central feature and value of the European Union minority exclusion still persists in the EU.

Smart thinking is needed to control immigration

Might it be possible for the government to copy Switzerland and focus on internal controls?23 March 2017
Photo: David McKelvey (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Internal controls are a smarter modern way of controlling immigration and should be examined carefully before a unilateral Home Office decision – almost certainly unworkable – turns Article 50 into a train crash.

Populism Thinking Lab Summit Analysis

Security Pivot Towards a Police State in France

Populisms' Slippery Slope5 February 2017
"Police Francaise - Policía francesa - F" (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) by Oscar in the middle

The first European Thinking Lab took place from 25-27 November in Lisbon. During the Summit, the contributors cooperated within their Thinking Lab and worked out brief policy proposals. Félix Blanc is engaged with the topic of a Security Pivot towards a Police State in France.