The European Parliament and Article 50 negotiations – on the sidelines or front and centre?

By Lisa Nolan Following the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union was invoked for the first time since its creation as part of the Treaty of Lisbon. Article 50(2) states that the role of the European Parliament (EP) shall only be to consent to aContinue reading “The European Parliament and Article 50 negotiations – on the sidelines or front and centre?”

Poland and the EU: A Bitter Divorce

By Kaitlyn Byrne Poland became a member of the European Union on May 1st, 2004, under the Accession Treaty signed in Athens in April 2003. This involved the commitment to “a stability of institutions guaranteeing democracy, the rule of law, human rights, and respect for and protection of minorities” (European Council, 1993).  However, recently, theContinue reading “Poland and the EU: A Bitter Divorce”

The Joint Procurement Agreement (JPA) vs. public health emergencies: can the JPA win?

By Claudia Mantovan With the current COVID-19 crisis, the ability of the European Union (EU) to effectively face public health emergencies is being questioned once again. In the context of the pandemic, there is need for coordination and solidarity and one of the EU’s tools to try to achieve that is the Joint Procurement AgreementContinue reading “The Joint Procurement Agreement (JPA) vs. public health emergencies: can the JPA win?”

Is the European Commission becoming less independent?

By Jamie Millar As the steady enlargement of the European Union continues, the issue of its main executive arm’s independence and politicisation persists. But just how well-founded are these claims that Commissioners are losing autonomy? Is it a merited cause of concern for the overall strength of the Union and for its smaller member statesContinue reading “Is the European Commission becoming less independent?”

State sovereignty, anti-elitism and coal: how national politics affect the implementation of the EU Green Deal in Poland

By Lieke Wiersum In December of 2020, the EU Green Deal was finalized. Since then, progress has been made, but efforts are still insufficient to reach the climate targets formulated in the Paris Agreement. Although all 27 member states signed the deal, many are significantly behind others in implementing suitable measures (Climate Action Tracker, 2021).Continue reading “State sovereignty, anti-elitism and coal: how national politics affect the implementation of the EU Green Deal in Poland”

Rule of Law Conditionality on EU Funds: Why this addition to the rule of law toolbox is important in addressing rule of law backsliding in the EU

By Suzanne Rowe Article 2 of the TEU states that the EU is “founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities”. It is considered that these values are common to all Member States andContinue reading “Rule of Law Conditionality on EU Funds: Why this addition to the rule of law toolbox is important in addressing rule of law backsliding in the EU”

Interest Groups: Some say donations others say bribes – What is the money really for?

By Nicola Mc Grath The European Parliament (EP) has been able to amend legislation since the entry into force of the Single European Act in July 1987, thereby incorporating certain interests and policy aims in the decision making process. Since 2008, the European Union’s (EU) political parties and foundations can receive private financial donations asContinue reading “Interest Groups: Some say donations others say bribes – What is the money really for?”

How is public health expenditure hindering Albania from EU accession?

By Dovile Milisauskaite Since the fall of its communist regime in 1990, the Balkan nation of Albania has worked toward a clear goal: European integration. The country, which was isolated economically and politically from the rest of the world just 20 years ago, has been an official candidate for accession to the European Union since 2014.Continue reading “How is public health expenditure hindering Albania from EU accession?”

The One that got away? How Poland is sidelining the EU’s anti-authoritarianism measures.

By Ekaterina Tarasova Since the accession of the Law and Justice party (PiS) in 2015, Poland has been engaged in democratic backsliding – a process defined as the deliberate undermining of liberal democratic values and the system of checks and balances by the domestic elite in order to achieve its long-term hegemony (Pech and Scheppele,Continue reading “The One that got away? How Poland is sidelining the EU’s anti-authoritarianism measures.”

The EU and Upholding Human Rights: Are Trade Deal Stipulations Enough?

By Elena Devereux With a considerable rise in the social awareness of human rights issues/violations globally, many have alerted attention to how international organizations such as the EU use their power to aid or tackle these situations. Whilst some argue that the EU’s use of trade deals and specific stipulations relating to human rights isContinue reading “The EU and Upholding Human Rights: Are Trade Deal Stipulations Enough?”