Past Program

Sep 27 - Sep 28, 2009

Stress-testing the European Union: The EU and the Global Financial Crisis


The EU has been transformed in the last decade by an enlargement beyond anyone's wildest dreams as of 25 years ago, and by the emergence of the Euro which has gathered strength as a prospective rival to the dollar. However, it is facing one of its greatest tests to date as it grapples with the most severe economic challenges since its foundation. How will the policy differences among the leaders of its constituent nation states play out in the medium to longer term? Is the Euro working as a 'safe haven' or facing severe strain as it inhibits diverse responses appropriate to the different economies within the Eurozone? How far have the European institutions and its older members been able to offer effective support to the more recent and, in some cases, very vulnerable members? How have the EU or its member states reacted to the siren calls towards protectionism, and how will the EU respond to protectionist moves elsewhere in the world?

The European Union has been identified as a post-modern phenomenon in its unprecedented sharing of sovereignties. Will this model emerge from present circumstances strengthened or undermined?

This meeting will culminate with the Delors Lecture on European affairs, to be delivered by Lord (Chris) Patten.