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European Strategy and Policy Analysis System

Global Trends to 2030: The Future of Migration and Integration

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, October 18, 2018
Abstract in English: 
International migration and geographic mobility have major implications for societies and economies. This is true at global level, and, perhaps even more so, at European level. The special impact on Europe is partly down to its history. Until just two generations ago, most European countries recorded much more emigration than immigration. In fact, some EU Member States and neighbouring countries still do which implies a potential loss of talent and skills. As a result, there are no ‘classical’ immigration countries on the European continent, comparable to the US, Canada or Australia. This goes some way towards explaining why Europe’s migration policies often lack coherence, selectivity and a focus on socio-economic outcomes. Since the 1990s temporary or permanent admission granted by EU Member States is dominated more by rights-based and humanitarian considerations (family reunion, asylum, humanitarian protection) than by economic interests.
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Global Trends to 2030: Identities and Biases in the Digital Age

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Publication date: 
Thursday, October 18, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Digital technologies have opened up ways of discovering the world, creating an unprecedented access to knowledge and information. Fostering vast communication and connection opportunities, they came with the promise of furthering free and open democratic deliberation. And they have initially delivered: facilitating freedom of expression, enabling easier and faster access to information and greater transparency, boosting media diversity, and creating broader opportunities for civic engagement and political participation. Social media in particular now allow for unparalleled connectivity of a truly interactive nature. They help people stay in touch with friends and family, and find people who share the same passions, interests or beliefs across borders, facilitating new groups and communities of interest to form and grow.
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10
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Global Trends to 2030: The Future of Work and Workplaces

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, October 18, 2018
Abstract in English: 
In some ways, the future of work is here; in others, it is shrouded in uncertainty or heralded with great expectations. Of course, throughout human history, work has changed, as have societies. Transformations in how and where work is conducted, by whom it is performed and under what conditions, as well as how it is remunerated and valued, have come hand in hand with changes in individual and family life, social cohesion and wellbeing, and civic and political life. Today, a number of observed mega-trends are again shifting the tectonics of work: Pervasive digital technology is opening up boundless new opportunities while at the same time blurring workplace boundaries and impacting human behaviours and expectations in ways that may still be unknown. Continuing population growth will create the biggest – but potentially most precarious and polarised – global workforce to date, with sustainability implications of an existential scale.
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14
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The Future of International Trade and Investment (ESPAS Ideas Paper)

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Publication date: 
Thursday, September 20, 2018
Abstract in English: 
This paper examines current trends, uncertainties and wild cards in relation to international trade and investment. It then considers implications for the European Union.
The European Union’s interest remains clear: a rules-based order is better than a transactional or winner-takes-all approach to international trade. But it is wise to plan for the worst, while hoping for the best.
The future of international trade and investment may lie somewhere between the extremes of the status quo and a reversion to protectionism. This would involve a thorough revision and rebalancing of multilateral norms, to take account of major global changes on many fronts. The EU has traditionally been a leading player in the creation of international institutions and norms. But the days when Europe could dictate the global agenda are over. Europe’s role will be increasingly a matter of seeking to influence events, rather than asserting dominance. In the coming decades, internal unity and a strong sense of purpose will be all the more important.
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12
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The Future of Warfare (ESPAS Ideas Paper)

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The Future of Warfare (ESPAS Ideas Paper)
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Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, September 20, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Warfare is shaped by geopolitical, societal, technological, economic and military trends:
Geopolitical: The multipolar relations between ever bigger political entities with overlapping spheres of influences are defined by surpise and uncertainty. Smaller political entities will be weaker and proxy wars more common in the future. Detterence will be reinterpreted, vulnerable states more prone to aquire nuclear weapons and international norms weakened. Megacities will be central battlefields that leave ground forces vulnerable.
Social: Warfare will shift to the internet, it will be uncontrollably ‘open-source’, live and shocking, with ever more spectacular terror. Armies will be more network-centred, waging more personalised wars and will have to find new ways to interact with democratic societies. Women in combat and the disappearance of world war veterans change the way people think about war.
Technological: Mankind becomes more powerful over time, with non-state actors possessing capabilities currently restricted to super-powers. It will struggle to outlaw technological advances and wage war without violence. The West will lose its technological superiority and will have even bigger problems in knowing how and what to research. Both inferior and highly developed armies will develop new ways of engaging the enemy. Artificial intelligence (AI) will mean that democratic armies have to balance the ‘human in the loop’ policy against effectiveness.
Economic: The economy of the opponent will be a bigger target than in the past, with commercial and dual-goods becoming more important, and the environment a more widely used weapon.
Military: Possible future military situations will be more diverse then ever. Western armies will be vulnerable to cheap weaponry. The idea that wars will be easy to win will make the world more dangerous.
Key uncertainties are China, the cyber-dimension, robotics, autonomous systems and artificial intelligence, paradigmatic breakthroughs such as quantum computing, general AI and anti-ballistic systems, nuclear detterence and nuclear bargaining. Ten key questions for policy-makers focus on strategic autonomy, adaptation, balancing reserves, R&D, cooperation and export, interventions, China, weakening norms, anticipation, communication and procurement.
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Global Trendometer - Essays on medium- and long-term global trends

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, September 4, 2017
Abstract in English: 
The European Union has come through difficult years. A succession of crises, often interlinked, have been the major concern of European leaders for much of the past decade. This experience has driven home the lesson that prevention is better than the cure, and that more can be done to identify and prepare for future challenges. The EU as a whole has worked to enhance its foresight capacity, notably through the work of the inter-institutional ESPAS process. For its part, the European Parliament is placing greater emphasis on agenda-setting and on horizon scanning, both to support its work in shaping the future through legislation and to improve the quality of public policy discussion of key challenges and choices ahead.
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62
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Shaping the Future - Thoughts on the Future of Society and Governance

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Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, November 16, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The ESPAS process is committed to identifying global long-term trends facing the European Union and its decision-makers. In addition, it is intended as a framework for engaging with international strategic allies, counterparts and experts from around the world in order to reflect on common global trends and challenges.
This publication represents an important step in this direction and we are tremendously grateful that amidst their heavy professional, academic and personal commitments, our speakers generously responded to our request for contributions. The result is a unique collection of over 40 original short essays addressing the different themes of this year’s Annual Meeting. The diversity of perspectives, we hope, will stimulate our readers’ thinking about the ways in which mega-trends, game-changers and our policy and political choices intersect and what this may mean for the future.
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84
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ESPAS in Brief - #espas16

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Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Saturday, October 1, 2016
Abstract in English: 
The European Strategy and Policy Analysis System (ESPAS) provides a framework for cooperation and consultation at administrative level, on a voluntary basis, between the European Parliament, the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, and the European External Action Service, with the Committee of the Regions and the European Economic and Social Committee as observers, to work together on medium and long-term trends facing or relating to the European Union.
In 2015, we inaugurated a three-year work programme of events, built around key themes laid out in the ESPAS Report on Global Trends to 2030: Can the EU Meet with Challenges Ahead?
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Citizens in an Interconnected and Polycentric World

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, March 1, 2012
Abstract in English: 
The report correctly draws a picture of global multipolarity. Of particular interest is the scope of its content and research, which was conducted not only in the developed world but also in the major poles of the emerging world. The analysis of the report is based on thorough and far-reaching research which is very useful to understand the complexities of the present global context.
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Executive summary: 
The report correctly draws a picture of global multipolarity. Of particular interest is the scope of its content and research, which was conducted not only in the developed world but also in the major poles of the emerging world. The analysis of the report is based on thorough and far-reaching research which is very useful to understand the complexities of the present global context.
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Global Trends to 2030: Can the EU meet the challenges ahead?

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Abstract in English: 
Built on the previous reports drawn up under the ESPAS project to date, this study seeks to map more comprehensively the five major trends that are likely to shape the future and will need to be taken into account by the Union as it defines coherent strategic options for the next governance cycle. They include:
- A richer and older human race characterised by an expanding global middle class and greater inequalities
- A more vulnerable process of globalisation led by and economic G3
- A transformative industrial and technological revolution
- A growing nexus of climate change, energy and the competition for resources
- Changing power, increased interdependence and fragile multilateralism
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82
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